Jarno Widar's teammate compares the U23 Giro champion to Giro winner Tadej Pogacar: "He's even more explosive than Tadej"

Aleksandr Vlasov. Tom Pidcock. Juan Ayuso. The list of former winners of the U23 version of Giro d'Italia (currently called 'Giro Next Gen') is brimming with stars of the professional peloton and Jarno Widar is the latest addition to the exclusive club. At the age of 18! The Belgian won both decisive mountain stages which was enough to secure an overall triumph.

Most of his predecessors went on to have great careers afterwards. Whether Widar can also follow that example remains to be seen. "But this still makes us hope for the very best for the future," says Lotto Dstny sports director Kurt Van de Wouwer to Sporza.

"We knew that the Giro Next Gen was within its potential," said Van de Wouwer. "But as a first-year promise, we thought he would lack experience. He has enormous potential. The honors list of the Giro Next Gen also includes many big names. Will he follow them? The level is even higher among the pros. So it is important to keep your feet on the ground and keep working."

What does the Baby Giro say about Jarno Widar's future? Can the Limburg climber ever follow in the footsteps of the recent big Giro winner Tadej Pogacar? In any case, it is not the first time that the Belgian promise is mentioned in the same breath as the Slovenian. "It is the rider that Jarno comes closest to," his teammate and close friend Milan Donie even said. "I'm sure he's even more explosive than Tadej."

Not a small comparison, but not completely blown away either. On the climb of La Redoute, according to Strava, the difference is barely one second... Yet the Lotto talent is horrified by the comparison. "But Pogacar is a good example that the combination of classics and stage races is possible," he said at Het Nieuwsblad.

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