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Wout van Aert as a Veranda’s Willems-Crelan rider in 2018. But now his abrupt departure from that team almost three years ago looks set to cost him a lot of money

Wout van Aert has been ordered by a court in Belgium to pay his former manager a sum of €662,000 in a severance payment after a near three-year legal action.

Nick Nuyens owned Sniper Cycling when
Van Aert broke his contract with the team in September, 2018. Nuyens said at
the time Van Aert was acting without the team’s consent, adding the matter was
in the hands of his lawyers.

While he previously was not successful
in an action seeking €1.2 million, the Labour Court in Antwerp has just overruled
that decision, and found that Van Aert should pay Nuyens.

However, the court also believed the
demand by Nuyens was too high and has instead said the payment should be

Van Aert was riding for Veranda’s
Willems-Crelan in 2018, which was owned by Sniper Cycling. The team almost
merged with Irish ProConti team Aqua Blue Sport.

However, while that deal was announced it did not happen.
And Aqua Blue Sport has since ceased trading.

Just weeks after that merger was announced and then fell
through, it became clear relations between Van Aert and Sniper Cycling were
very poor.

When Veranda’s Willems-Crelan later announced it had
merged with Dutch team Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij, van Aert was also critical
of that move.

He described his relationship with his team’s manager Nuyens
as “below freezing”.  And he said he did not want to ride for what would
be a mainly Dutch team.

Van Aert was already planning a move to Jumbo Visma for
2020 and said he did not want to ride for the new merged team Roompot–Crelan in
2019, which was initially planned.

At that point, August 2018, Sniper Cycling insisted it
had van Aert under contract for 2019. And it said it expected him to ride for
it next year, before moving on only in 2020. However, he quit the team within

In the end Van Aert became a Jumbo Visma rider from March
1st, 2019, and has recently signed another contract with the team, which will
take him through the end of 2024.

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