Mathieu van der Poel has won the seventh and penultimate stage of Tirreno-Adriatico.
It was a stage from Pieve Torina to Loreto with some short but very difficult climbs in the final. Van der Poel overtaken Italian Matteo Fabbro in the short, difficult climb to the finish. Both had been in the front group all day, which was largely overtaken.
Wilco Kelderman finished fourth. The leader‘s jersey remained in the hands of British rider Simon Yates. Monday there will be another individual time trial over a distance of more than 10 kilometres.
The leader of Mitchelton-Scott is 16 seconds ahead of the Pole Rafal Majka, the British rider Geraint Thomas is third. Kelderman has to make up for 59 seconds to pass Yates in Monday’s final time trial.
Dutch champion Van der Poel was already eliminated from the general classification in the tough mountain stages, but in the certainly difficult seventh stage he showed himself from the front the whole day. It wasn’t really my plan to go in the breakaway, but it happened and it was a nice group, the rider from Alpecin-Fenix looked back. It was a tough stage with all those short steep climbs. But actually all the stages, even the flat ones, are heavy here
The stage win on Saturday by his Belgian teammate Tim Merlier had created extra morale. That did give extra confidence. I‘m happy that I’m finally back at level and can race the way I want: aggressive riding, that’s what I like to do
National coach Koos Moerenhout will gladly select Van der Poel for the world title race, in a fortnight time in Italy. He has not yet spoken about his possible participation.