250th win for Vos: 'Every victory has its story'

250th win for Vos: 'Every victory has its story'

Last Wednesday, Marianne Vos added Dwars Door Vlaanderen to her impressive list of honours. It was the Dutchwoman's 250th victory. Even after this latest success, the 36-year-old rider refuses to get carried away. "I prefer to cherish my highlights."

Asked how she feels about having just celebrated her 250th victory, Vos is down-to-earth rather than proud. "I am mostly reminded of it by others. It is not something I think about every day. Of course, I think about the ups and downs of my career from time to time. It is special that I have won so many races, but I am not fixated on the exact number. I try to cherish the highs", Vos says.

Numerous grand tour stage wins, several world titles, and even an Olympic gold medal. These are some of Vos's two hundred and fifty victories. When she first started her road career in 2004, she never imagined achieving this kind of success. "Not for a second did I dare to think about such milestones. I didn't really think about it back then. For me, it was all about getting better and reaching the finals. Reaching my maximum potential. That is still what I like to do best", Vos says.

"In all these years, women's cycling has developed a lot", she continues. "The calendar has expanded, and the competition has become stronger. The field is vast these days. It motivates me even more. You can't let up for a moment, or you'll fall behind. It keeps me on my toes. I work every day to get the best out of myself. I always try to start a race in the best possible condition."

Vos does not have a favourite victory. "Each victory has its own story. It would be easy to say that winning the world championship and Olympic gold are the highlights. But I don't feel that way. For example, a victory after an injury is extraordinary. I will remember my victory in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad last month for a long time. It was a signal that I still had it in me. It gives you confidence at a time like this."

"The satisfaction I get comes mainly from riding the finals"

Marianne Vos

"I certainly don't have a wish list of races I want to tick off", the ever-realistic rider continues. "The satisfaction I get comes mainly from riding the finals. I want to win as many races as possible but don't care about records. Like I said, I concentrate on getting the best out of myself. I still get a lot of satisfaction from training. The fun of cycling comes first."

Next Sunday, Vos will be at the start of the Tour of Flanders. The rider from the Dutch city of Den Bosch will be aiming for her 251st professional victory. There is no lack of motivation or quality.

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