Historic Overview Adrie van der Poel
Adri van der Poel (born 17 June 1959 in Bergen op Zoom, Netherlands) is a retired Dutch cyclist. Van der Poel was a professional from 1981 to 2000. His biggest wins included 6 classics, two stages of the Tour de France and the World Cyclo-Cross Championships in 1996. He also obtained the second place and silver medal in the World Road Championships in 1983 behind Greg LeMond and five second places in the World Cylo-Cross championships. The Grand Prix Adri van der Poel is named after him.
Van der Poel began his career on the road and during his first season as a professional he obtained second place in Paris–Nice behind Stephen Roche and second place in the La Flèche Wallonne. In the Tour de France, he won two stages; his stage win in 1988 set the record for fastest stage (since then only surpassed by three cyclists). Van der Poel also competed in cyclo-cross during the winter and obtained great results – that he turned full-time to cyclo-cross in the latter part of his career where he won the World Championships in 1996 and the World Cup and Superprestige classifications in 1997. Van der Poel retired after the 2000 Cyclo-Cross World Championships where he finished fourth and which was won by his teammate Richard Groenendaal.
In 1983 he tested positive for strychnine. He said that his father-in-law had served a pigeon pie for Sunday lunch, and only when he tested positive did he realise that the pigeons had been doped with strychnine.