Will Mathieu van der Poel really take on an Ironman after losing YouTube bet?

Alpecin-Deceuninck rider appears on YouTube to teach mountain biking skills but ends up agreeing to compete in an Ironman triathlon

Clock19:12, Thursday 16th November 2023
Will cycling, swimming and running will be on the cards for Mathieu van der Poel in 2024?

© Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images

Cycling, swimming and running will be on the cards for Mathieu van der Poel in 2024

Alpecin-Deceuninck leader Mathieu van der Poel might be about to embark on a whole new discipline in his athletic career.

Already a world champion road and cyclo-cross racer - alongside being one of the best mountain bikers in the world - Van der Poel has now lost a wager that may see him compete in an Ironman event.

Read more: Alpecin-Deceuninck Team Talk: Best season yet for the team who just keep on improving

The Dutchman appeared in a video on the YouTube channel Average Rob, which in itself was a result of a wager that Van der Poel had made on the channel previously. The deal was, that if the original video reached 10,000 likes, Van der Poel would teach 'Average Rob' and 'Arno the Kid' how to mountain bike.

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With over 400,000 subscribers, the video unsurprisingly smashed this target and Van der Poel made good on his promise. In their latest collaboration, entitled 'Becoming a Mountain Bike Champion ft. Mathieu van der Poel,' Average Rob floated the wager of Van der Poel taking part in an Ironman if the video got 42,000 likes.

Hands on hips, and with an inquisitive look on his face, Van der Poel only took a brief moment to ponder the challenge before breaking into a smile and shaking on the promise. A full 66,000 likes later, and seeing as Van der Poel is clearly a man of his word, we can expect to see the Dutchman taking on this almighty challenge.

His only worry - aside from the 2.4-mile swim and 26.2-mile run tagged on either side of a 112-mile bike ride, is the small matter of when and how the Dutch rider could fit the event into his already busy calendar.

Read more:

"But when?" asked Van der Poel. "It has to fit the schedule."

"You choose one and we come with you," said Arno, before joking about how long it may take himself and Rob to finish the event. "You just have to wait like seven hours at the finish and then I will come."

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