Lars Van der Haar’s Three Challenges
Articles from Belang van Limburg and Het Nieuwsblad on 22 October. Important to note, prior to the Cauberg Cross. Master of the Cauberg/Dutch Runner-Up at the World Championship Has a Tough Winter Ahead of Him
(I’ll mix both but both papers are from the same press group, so the articles must be the same after all.)
By 1 January Lars Van der Haar officially races for under Sven Nys’ wings as a member of the Telenet-Fidea cycling team. It will his to put his team back on the map. Until then in theory he can race his own race. Also next Sunday in Valkenburg, on the Cauberg. Lars won the first three editions of the Cauberg Cross as a World Cup event [Bart Wellens won it as a non-ranking event before]. There were a few changes on the route, which Lars was unaware of and he hoped that it still suits him because the 2018 Worlds will be held there.
#1 Working with Sven Nys“Sven Already Coaches Me”
Officially the “wedding” is for 1 January but unofficially Sven Nys & Lars Van der Haar are already “living under the same roof”.
The partnership is going very well. We have almost daily contact and Sven already coaches me during the races. Hij’s got an agreement with Giant about that. I expect to land again in a team in which cross in central. With Giant-Alpecin, I have a fantastic trainer: Adriaan Helmantel but during the races he cannot bring me anything more. That must be Sven’s added value. We already work hard but when most stop at 100%, Sven was someone who went to 110%. I hope that he can bring me there too but it should also be fun, which I don’t doubt. The outside world has made Sven more serious than he really is
Van der Haar stands famous for being an impulsive rider. Whether Sven Nys should try to make him race more conservatively:
Richard Groenendaal at Rabobank has tried to do that but I have my nature. If I see a hole, I’m diving in it.
#2 Competing with the Two Greats[/b]“On a Good Day I Can Beat Them
I know from last year that I can beat them on a good day but I admit that over the whole season they are better than I am. I am no Mathieu Van der Poel and no Wout Van Aert but I should be the third man who can be the closest to them. I feel that I am closer to Wout & Mathieu race after race but I’m still at the standard I should perform. I’ve quickly reached my current level but the last percents are the hardest. As far as the results are concerned, I’m not bad but the way I get those results are not the way I’m eyeing to.
Lars feels like he’s still too much undergoing the facts. His racing style he describes as “attacking, racing along, flying in”:
Do more than just racing your own tempo. I see it as a miss that I’m not able to battle it out with Wout and Mathieu. At the moment they are playing with the competition. It’s not easy to bridge the gap. I cannot easily judge how far my condition is. I feel that I’m getting better every race and that my top condition isn’t so far. The next two weekends will show whether it can bring up podium places. With regards to training, I’m not at my peak yet. I’m still in the build-up phase: longer trainings, longer blocks. I’m still lagging.
#3 Getting Top Fit AgainRaced Too Much On the Road
Lars missed a great deal of his preparation to the new season after a tendon injury. Thereby the Dutchman can still no complete every training and that irritates him.
That’s how I’ve resumed run training just this week. A bit of jogging, not more. And I felt right away that that tendon was acting up. It meant that I needed to adapt my training.
You don’t need to look too far away to get the cause to the injury, Van der Haar rode too much on the road last summer:
That’s clear, yeah. It was fun to for once look for my limits but in retrospect I wasn’t smart: Tour of Belgium, Dauphiné, Ster ZLN… Had I known that in advance I would never have done it.