Suspect identified in search for man responsible for throwing beer over Mathieu van der Poel at Tour of Flanders

There was uproar on Sunday when a 'fan' at the roadside threw their cap towards the wheels of Mathieu van der Poel at Paris-Roubaix. A week earlier however, the world champion was the victim of more crowd trouble at the Tour of Flanders with a culprit now having been identified by police.

As van der Poel rode onto the Oude Kwaremont en route to a fabulous victory, the Dutchman was showered with abuse from certain crowd members, not just verbally either with beer being thrown over the Alpecin-Deceuninck leader. In an update to the investigation, Joost Duhamel of the Flemish Ardennes police zone gave Het Nieuwsblad some positive news.

On the incident at Paris-Roubaix, Duhamel is shocked at the brazen stupidity of such spectators. “If that gets into his gear, he could fall,” Duhamel laments. “We cannot tolerate such things. Based on these facts, we are once again receiving tips about beer throwing during Van der Poel's third climb on the Oude Kwaremont during the Tour of Flanders. People who think that things cannot continue like this. Rightly so. First throw a beer, now a hat. Where is it going to end? We need to set limits on that behavior. If you can't just go out and support, then stay home."

“Following last week's beer throwers at the Oude Kwaremont, one person is already clearly in the picture. He has not yet been interrogated, but he can expect an invitation. Although there are also two camps regarding investigations. People who think we are right to track down those beer throwers, and others who openly wonder if we have nothing better to do," Duhamel says. "But Sunday's incident during Paris-Roubaix clearly shows that we must take action. That behaviour must stop before it goes from bad to worse.”

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