Mathieu van der Poel immediately hit his first race as a mountain biker in almost two years on Friday.

The Dutchman was the fastest in the World Cup sprint race in Albstadt, Germany.

The 26-year-old Van der Poel was two seconds faster than the Frenchman Victor Koretzky and a second behind, Nino Schurter, the eight-time world champion from Switzerland, finished.

On Sunday, Van der Poel will also compete in the cross-country race in Albstadt, after which he will ride in Nové Mesto in the Czech Republic next weekend.

Van der Poel's previous mountain bike race was 21 months ago. In August 2019 he won gold at the World Cup in Lenzerheide, after which he was only active as a cyclist and road cyclist.