I was born on 30th December 1985 in Vlijmen, North Brabant.
At the start of this century, I made a spectacular entrance into the world of cycling. As a young cyclo-crosser. I soon became the terror of the Belgian cross enclave. Riders such as Sven Nys could barely keep up with me at times.
In 2008 I achieved my greatest triumph until then. In the Italian city of Treviso I became world champion cyclo-cross. Throughout my career I had always combined the field with the road. After my success in the mud, it was only a matter of time before I started to shift my focus.
At Rabobank I found a new challenge on the road. Prologues and time trials are my specialty, but one-day races also suit me. In 2008 I became Dutch road champion, while in 2012 I finished sixth in Paris-Roubaix and fifth at the World Championships in Limburg. The overall victory in the Eneco Tour (WorldTour) was the icing on the cake for me.
Between all the road races I also return to cyclo-cross every now and then. Since 2007, I successfully defended my national title five times in a row.
My greatest triumph was in 2014, When I won the fifth stage of the Tour de France. The stage was marked by difficulty due to wet conditions and significant sections of cobblestones. It was exactly nine years ago that a Dutch rider, Pieter Weening, won a Tour de France Stage.
In 2015 rode for the Astana Cycling team. For me it was time to sign a new contract after 11 years on the same team. I was ready for something new and different to Team Belkin. My mind needed this, new people, new coaches, new directors, new people around me, new challenges.
After two years, I returned to my former employer (Team LottoNL-Jumbo). Last year was not the best in my career, but with a stage victory in the Binckbank Tour and the Ovo Energy Tour of Britain, where I became the overall winner as well, there are some very nice victories on my list of achievements.
The classics are at the top of my list for this year as well. I want to be very strong in March and April. Afterwards, the Tour de France is the next major race of the season and it is my goal to help Dylan Groenewegen as good as I can. And I want to win the cobblestones stage. I am particularly eager in any case.