He was never going to pull hard with van Aert and Pog on his wheel. Both have strong sprints so he probably didnt want to tow them up to vDP. The lead rider always has the upper hand as they can just go all in vs a group who all try to save a bit.
Great race. As always the last 30km is a great watch
As expected everyone was watching Pog and one of the ‘off form’ stars was able to counter attack and get a gap because he wasn’t the top favorite. Just not the one I picked.
Maybe more impressed by Ganna than MVDP today - think he overperformed his prior monument races significantly
Most surprising thing for me was the almost complete lack of moto assistance that MVDP received - seemed the descent was filmed almost entirely from the air and there was a significant effort by the organizers to not have motos impacting the finale in any way
VdP has demonstrated that his raw power on terrain like this is just greater than like… 99% of the peloton for one-day events. He’s the quintessential “finesse” rider. Just like old muscle cars that got 10 miles to the gallon but had more horse power than today’s F350s.
Did anyone notice that Wout was more focused on blocking Pog than crossing the finish line? (For the record, I’m a huge Wout fan.)