Van der Poel wins as Pogacar leads Tirreno

·1-min read

Mathieu van der Poel emptied his tank to take a remarkable solo win in the fifth stage of the Tirreno-Adriatico as Tour de France champion Tadej Pogacar extended his overall lead in impressive style.

Dutchman Van der Poel first attacked the main bunch with 60 kilometres left on a stormy, cold Sunday in the Marche, accelerating repeatedly until he was on his own before extending his advantage to almost three minutes.

At the end of the 205km ride from Castellalto to Castelfidardo, he seemed to have another dominant win in the bag but cracked in the finale and Slovenian Pogacar, who had jumped away from a group of overall contenders, ended up finishing only 10 seconds behind.

Van der Poel did not even have the strength to raise his arms to celebrate.

Belgian Wout van Aert, second overall, limited the damage to end the stage in third place, 49 seconds off the pace.

On a brutal day, Britain's Simon Yates, leader of Australia's Team Bike Exchange, came home just over five minutes behind and is now 10th overall, nearly seven minutes down on Pogacar.

The Slovenian leads van Aert by 1:15 and Spain's Mikel Landa by 3:00 with 2019 Tour de France winner Egan Bernal in fourth place, 3:30 off the pace.

Monday's sixth stage is a 169km ride from Castelraimondo to Lido di Fermo.