Michal Kwiatkowski has uploaded his Amstel Gold Race winning ride to Strava – and the stats are suitably impressive.
The world champion outsprinted Alejandro Valverde and Michael Matthews to claim his first road race victory since winning the rainbow jersey in Ponferrada, Spain.
And Kwiatkowski’s Strava stats provide a leg-numbing insight into the 259km race. The Polish rider recorded an average speed of 39.6km/h (and a maximum of 83.5km/h), with an estimated average power output of 369 watts (it’s important to emphasise that’s estimated, with Kwiatkowski’s power data hidden and Strava not taking into account the drafting effect of the peloton). Kwiatkowski earned eight KOM titles and seven yearly KOM marks. Of course, there’s only one title the 24-year-old has his sights set on.
The ride shows how the race pace increased with each lap, with the Pole shaving 15 seconds off his time up the Cauberg on the final climb compared to the penultimate ascent of the race’s decisive hill, when Kwiatkowski admitted he was suffering.
Kwiatkowski’s time of 1:31 minutes on the climb, which averages eight per cent, places him top of the Strava leaderboard, while Philippe Gilbert – who attacked on the climb but isn’t a regular Strava user – is likely to have gone even faster.
However, the final sprint on Sunday wasn’t as fast as previous races on the course – for example, during the 2012 World Championships, in which Gilbert soloed to victory. On that day, Laurens ten Dam (Netherlands) and Ronan Mc Laughlin (Ireland) both finished in a group nearly nine minutes back but still top the Strava leaderboard after covering the final 1.6km in 90 seconds.
The fact this year’s Amstel Gold Race finale was slower may have helped Kwiatkowski and the other main contenders catch Gilbert and Michael Matthews (Orica-GreenEDGE) before contesting the sprint finish. According to Strava, Kwiatkowski covered the same 1.6km in 1:43 minutes, at an average speed of 56.4km/h.
Kwiatkowski was one of 22 riders to upload his Amstel Gold Race ride, with Mike Terpstra – brother of the Kwiatkowski’s Etixx-QuickStep team-mate, Niki – revealing the stats from the day’s break.
Terpstra, riding for Rompoot Oranje Peloton, shot up the day’s first climb – the Slingerberg (1.1km at 6 per cent) in 2:01 minutes, the fastest time on Strava. Kwiatkowski and the rest of the peloton were three seconds slower, by contrast.
Marcus Burghardt, meanwhile, is among the riders to have uploaded his stats from both the 2015 and 2014 editions of the Amstel Gold Race. The BMC Racing man was tasked with controlling the front of the bunch for Gilbert on both occasions and his two rides show this year’s race started quicker but was much slower up the Bergseweg as they settled into the chase.
The first ascent of the Cauberg was also slower (for Burghardt, at least), as was the fourth and final time up the climb. In the case of the latter, Burghardt recorded a time more than half-a-minute slower, though that owes much to the different role he played.
Twelve months ago, the German finished alongside two team-mates, Ben Hermans and Dominik Nerz, just a minute behind their successful team-mate Gilbert.
This time out, Burghardt was ten minutes behind the race leaders by the time the race finished, with his job for the day long since over and no need to charge up the Cauberg.
Michal Kwiatkowski’s Strava stats
Moving time: 6:32:47 hours
Energy output: 8,686kJ
Average speed: 39.6km/h
Maximum speed: 83.5km/h