I know, we discussed this before. I was tempering expectations a few months ago. And i still do. I was just saying what Van Aert has said. For me, i wouldn't be surprised if he's an actual contender. But i'm not automatically assuming he will. (I expressed similar sentiments in the Evenepoel topic).Dekker_Tifosi said:Ofcourse. I expect that as well. I even expressed that.Logic-is-your-friend said:Van Aert expects him (Mathieu) to be a contender in the big classics.Dekker_Tifosi said:Yeah, in just 3 weeks time we get to see him ride in Turkey. And then another month to Nokere Koerse. First big WT race will be Gent Wevelgem.. Curious
If I look at his program I think Nokere Koerse and Brabantse Pijl are probably the races that will suit him best. Because they end in uphill sprints..
I have no doubt he will do well in at least 1 of GW, Dwars, RvV or AGR. If he wins a big one though that would be a huge surprise. More likely he'll do like Van Aert last year
However, there is a big difference between being a contender and between actually winning one. Even Sagan didn't win the big classic at his first attempt. And look how long it took Greg Van Avermaet to finally win one.
Stybar still hasn't gotten his big classic win and he's a 3 time world cx champion.
It could well be that MvdP is a category above Stybar, but, winning a big classic on his first attempt would be absolutely surprising and spectacular.