Wout van Aert finishes the Tour de France in style
Our Belgian champion had three stage wins in the Tour de France and they were important ones. He was the first to cross the finish line on the Champs Elysées after the historic ascent of Mont Ventoux and the Saint Emilion time trial.
Although his start in Brittany was not promising, Wout van Aert showed his versatility by winning a mountain stage with the double ascent of Mont Ventoux, the Saint-Émilion time trial - the last Belgian to win a time trial was Eric Vanderaerden in 1985 - and finally the sprint on the Champs Elysées. He is the third Belgian to achieve such a triple, after Jean Aerts and Eddy Merckx.
He finished the 21st and last stage of the Tour in the lead at the end of a 108 km course between Chatou and Paris. This victory means that Eddy Merckx keeps his record of 34 stage win in the Tour. Because if Cavendish (3rd place in the stage) had won, he could have boasted of having broken the record by adding a 35th victory to his record. Van Aert also gave Belgium a fifth victory in this Tour de France... the last time Belgium won five times in the Tour was in 1986.
The Tour de France was won for the second time in a row by the brilliant Slovenian Tadej Pogačar, aged just 22.
Our champion Wout van Aert is in great shape, which gives us considerable hope for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, where he flew as soon as he had celebrated his victory.