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When was the last time you saw a Tour de France champion defining a race at a cobbled classic? Go on and think a while; we’ll wait.
Tadej Pogačar raced the Tour de Flanders for the first time Sunday, and he wasn’t just perusing the event as a tourist — the two-time Tour champ rode to win. And while he didn’t pull off the victory, he absolutely did force every rider in the field to play on his terms until the final meters.
In the women’s race, defending champ Annemiek van Vleuten rode similarly in many ways to Pogačar — defining the race, chasing down the break, and forcing the critical selection. And, like Pogačar, she came up just a bit short as SD Worx had the numbers.
On this podcast, Ben Delaney and Andy Hood break down both races, taking a look at the tactics, the contentious points, the power numbers of Mathieu van der Poel, and the gear used at the classics this year.