Iserbyt does not blame "sly" Pidcock for maneuver in final corner: "It was just within the limits" Cyclo-cross

Iserbyt does not blame "sly" Pidcock for maneuver in final corner: "It was just within the limits"

Iserbyt does not blame "sly" Pidcock for maneuver in final corner: "It was just within the limits"

In the evening cyclo-cross race of Diegem won by Mathieu van der Poel, Eli Iserbyt eventually finished third. The Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal rider had to let runner-up Tom Pidcock go in the final phase but managed to secure the overall victory in the Superprestige standings with his third place. was there from start to finish!

The 26-year-old Iserbyt is in great form. On Boxing Day, he finished sixth in Gavere, the next day he was able to keep up with eventual race winner Wout van Aert for a long time in Heusden-Zolder, finishing second. Add in a third place in the evening cyclo-cross race of Diegem and that's three top results back to back. "Hopefully, I can also make things difficult for Mathieu," Iserbyt looked ahead about two hours before the start of the sandy cyclo-cross. "That would be very nice for the viewers too. But if that really happens, it will be more because of Mathieu himself, if he holds back a bit."

Iserbyt clinches Superprestige overall victory and praises Van der Poel and Pidcock

It was written in the stars that today was going to be an important day. After all, Iserbyt is leading in the three most important regularity classifications and could already clinch the first of these in Diegem. "Every race is important, but this race in Diegem really stands out at the moment. I know what I have to do. I have the luxury of being a few points ahead, but I also just want to compete for the podium again here."

And so it was: the first three to four laps were completed in a sort of peloton, following which MVDP then launched his decisive attack. Iserbyt, just like the previous days, was alert. The small in size Flemish rider battled Pidcock for silver. He put pressure on the INEOS Grenadiers Brit several times, but ultimately had to admit defeat to the man from Leeds. Yet, Iserbyt had no reason to mourn, as he was no longer at risk in the battle for the overall classification. "I surprised myself again," was his conclusion in the flash interview. "Mathieu's acceleration was phenomenal once again, but Tom also rode strongly. I was able to follow him well and ultimately thought I had him, but that turned out not to be the case."

"Hats off to him," says Iserbyt on Pidcock's overtaking maneuver

While Van der Poel had long left the rest of the pack behind, the battle for second place was definitely a thrilling one. Iserbyt seemed to have good cards, but eventually saw Pidders take off after a cunning move. "In the last corner, I actually let myself be outsmarted. I did not expect that maneuver anymore. Tom was a few meters back, but he was cunning enough to come through the inside of the corner. It was just within the limits, so hats off to him," he explains the 'incident'. "The third place is somewhat disappointing, but for me, the second or third place does not matter much, the most important thing was the classification."

"I may just be in the best form of my life," concludes Iserbyt, who can now rightly be said to be knocking firmly on the door of 'the Big Three'. Throughout the season - from the very beginning - he has been stringing together podium places and victories. And that is, of course, quite impressive. But whether there is already talk of 'the Big Four'? "For me, that doesn't matter. Three, four or five. It doesn't necessarily have to be labeled. It's something that mainly lives among the press. I just do what I can with my legs. I do my best and I recover well, so I'm super happy that I can deliver such performances. It gives me wings."

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