MARIJN VAN DEN BERG
The young Dutch classics prospect on going French and following the family path
ADutch rider on a French team?
Marijn van den Berg is a 21-year-old who rides for Groupama-FDJ’s Continental team. He’s from De Meern in the Netherlands, on the outskirts of Utrecht, which is not far from where his illustrious compatriot Annemiek van Vleuten comes from. This is his first year with FDJ, and his final year at under-23 level.
What kind of rider is he?
He’s a classics rider with a bit of a fast finish, so looks good for the one-day races. He told Procycling: “I’m more of a classics rider, but a little bit all round. I can do small climbs too, 10 minutes max. I like Flanders and races like that.”
How is he finding FDJ?
Pretty good so far, he says. Marijn’s older brother Lars is at the Groupama-FDJ WorldTour team having followed the same path through the U23 squad, so he’s treading good ground. He says: “It is really nice here. I changed teams for this year, I was at a Dutch Continental team before. That was also really good, but I got the opportunity to come to FDJ, which was a good idea to develop and go to some really nice races, and get in the picture a bit more.”
Has he had some good results?
He has already won a race this year, so yes. He was victorious at the GP Adria Mobil in Slovenia. Marijn says: “I won from a small group, 30 guys in the sprint. It was pretty hard, there were two big climbs and two short, steep ones. A lot of guys couldn’t follow, and were dropped. It wasn’t really like we were a break, people were just dropping out the back. That kind of sprint is good for me, a small group after a hard race. And the team worked really well with the leadout. With the Carpathian Couriers Race I won when I was at Metec, this is the biggest win of my career.”
How did he get into cycling?
He followed his brother. He said that he has never stopped cycling: “It was always my dream to become a pro, and we’re doing everything we can to make that happen.” Pandemic permitting, Marijn wants to prove his worth this year and get a pro contract for 2022.