Eric Vanderaerden (born 11 February 1962) is a retired road cyclist from the town of Lummen, Belgium.
He was a considerable talent, winning the prologue time trial of both the Vuelta a España and the Tour de France in his professional debut year 1983. In subsequent years, he won two monument races: in 1985, at 23, he won the storm ridden edition of the Tour of Flanders, and in 1987 he won Paris–Roubaix. In the Tour de France, his participation in the 1985 edition was a strong one, beating the later winner Bernard Hinault in a time trial stage. The following year, he won the green jersey.
After 1988, his career went in decline and, despite his talent, he failed to win major races. He certainly had considerable talent as a time trial racer, but as a climber in the mountains his talent was limited. Perhaps, he was partly a victim of the high expectations the Belgian public had to get a successor for Eddy Merckx, a cyclist who was very versatile in winning both classic races and big stage races.
After his active career, Vanderaerden has led a few semi-professional racing teams and was also assistant-manager of a professional Belgo-Italian team. He became a directeur sportif with the DFL-Cyclingnews-Litespeed team in August 2006. His son Michael Vanderaerden signed a contract with the team in September 2007.