Paris - Roubaix - Live
Coverage Part 2
The bunch on the cobblestone section of Beuvry à Orchies. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
1545 CEST - The pace which gets a bit
higher now, is making it more and more difficult for Hincapie to get back. Van
Sumeren, Bonnen, Devolder, Ballan, Cancellara, O'Grady are making the cut...and
Maaskant Belgium’s Johan Van Summeren (Silence Lotto) is alone in the lead in
cobbled section 11. Van Summeren has been caught; yet another dutch youngster
doing well this spring. Hincapie is losing time, now 38 seconds down. Of greater
concern for High Road, they have nobody in this octet.
And it seems Hincapie has once again suffered a mechanical at the crucial
juncture of Paris-Roubaix. O'grady, Cancellara and Boonen, the three winners of
the three last editions are here. A Quick Step - Lotto - CSC looks to be on the
cards. At the end of section 11, Van Summeren was caught by a handful of
favourites, including Stijn Devolder, Fabian Cancellara, Leif Hoste, Stuart
O’Grady, Tom Boonen, Alessandro Ballan and Maertin Maaskant. Is it the right
break? They have a decent gap. This is some group.
Masskant "Slipstreaming" along with the big boys. In Roubaix at the time they
are cleaning up the track after the juniors finish, to make way for the big
Cancellara and Ballan together behind Murillo Fischer.
Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
Here comes Mons en Pevele, a bad 5 star rated sector. Devolder rockets to the
front, he's got form and morale to burn after last weekend. The chase group
being led by Rabobank and High Road. Look at Devolder go! As if flicking a
switch, the Belgian champion injects more pace and seems to glide over the
cobbles. He's got a gap on the pack Lotto leads the chase in the favorite group,
while CSC are holding off at the moment.
1559 CEST - 44 km to go, Devolder still
continues, though he will be caught soon enough. Ballan Attacks. The crowd here
is four and five deep in many places - No its O'Grady! O'Grady gets a gap.
Boonen chooses to mark Cancellara. And O'Grady closes the gap to Devolder
easily. We have a pretty strange situation - last year's Paris-Roubaix winner
and this year's Tour of Flanders winner are in front, acting as teammates. Now
Lotto and Ballan will have their work cut out for them. Van Summeren looks to be
hurting, but he has to dig deep for Hoste. Boonen and Cancellara will take a
ride in the armchair.
Sector 9 700m De Mérignies à Pont-à-Marcq - A good move by CSC it has to be
said; it ends their reason for chasing, forcing the hand of two other teams 18
seconds is the gap. Ballan doesn't look too bothered, neither does Maaskant. Why
should they burn their matches, after all?
Hoste attacks. Cancellara on his wheel, Boonen on his. But he isn't getting a
gap, though he is tearing up Sector 9.A minute behind, High Road continue to
lead the chase. Tour of Flanders winner Devolder and Paris-Roubaix holder
O’Grady are 40 kms from the finish on the Roubaix velodrome.
The big guns in the middle of the pack. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
16.01 CEST - Section 8 now Pont Thibaut.
Hopefully we won't see two Monuments where the "favourites" mark themselves out
of contention with cagey, predictable riding. Boonen on the wheel of Cancellara,
Hoste attacks again. Someone waves a Flandrian flag, Hoste gives it a disgusted
"Get that thing away from me" look. A few years ago (2004?), he rode over a
flag, which then got caught in his back wheel, causing him to skid to a halt.
Ballan is looking to be in trouble also... can't quite hold the wheels of the
riders in front. Hoste is riding strongly... I think he will bring them back.
Meanwhile, Rabobank are probably wondering "why did we sell Maaskant?" The
Dutchman still looks good. The peloton is almost 1'30" down with Hincapie et al.
Devolder and O'Grady are caught. Devolder goes again. Great work by Hoste,
but now he's isolated; but the riders have learned from Flanders, and are not
letting him go. Leif Hoste leads the chase and bridges the gap with the two
leaders. Seven riders in the lead. Belgium’s Johan Van Summeren is dropped by
the leading group. Quick-Step and CSC with all the cards right now, but we
haven't seen the last attack today.
The peloton "eats dust" of the lead riders as they chase. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
1'36'' back to the peloton, so this is the group (if anyone doubted it). The
favorites are taking a little rest before the fireworks start again on the next
pave. Puncture for Ballan and and the Mavic Motorbike is alongside him now.
Boonen attacks and Cancellara counters O'Grady and Devolder hanging and then
Devolder and O'Grady shot out the back momentarily. Ballan back on
Boonen's wheel - Hoste is in the middle.
1. Andrew Fenn, 122km in 3:12'33.
2. Peter Sagan
3. Etienne Fedrigo
4. Emil Houmand
5. Michael Humbert
top 30 at the bottom of the page.
The big favorites are gone... Ballan, Cancellara and Boonen, while Hoste,
Marskant, O'Grady and Devolder are dropped. Boonen and Cancellara did the
damage, and that is probably the race slipping through his fingers for Hoste.
O'Grady tries to bridge across from behind, but can't get away. 15 seconds now.
looks like Hoste is not getting support Hoste looks at his mates, and realizes
all is up. Maaskant comes up to help him.
1624 CEST - 35 km to go, The three
leading favourites at the start are now in the lead: Tom Boonen, Fabian
Cancellara and Allesandro Ballan. With 35 kms to go, the podium might be
decided! What a triumvirate - Boonen, Ballan and Cancellara, all kings of the
cobbled classics in previous years. And 2'30" back to the peloton. Boonen,
Cancellara and Ballan are 30 kms from the finish.
27 km to go, Sector 6, Cysoing. Four
stars, ouch. The 3 continue to work well together he attacks will come on Sector
5, it seems. O'Grady and Devolder drop Hoste and Maaskant. Hincapie continues to
fight... The Carrefour de l'Arbre is Sector 5, its jagged tooth-like cobbles
striking fear into any cyclist.
Hoste fights his way back up toward Devolder, while Maaskant is struggling. The
big three now lead the first chasers - Hoste, O’Grady and Devolder - by 40
And O'grady attacks again.... he is powerful today. I suppose he will be
worried about the peloton catching them? The Super Trio have a minutes gap now.
Devolder leaves O'Grady behind can he catch up the with the leaders? He's a
beast.Observe O'Grady's technique on those cobbled turns; he almost catches up
with Devolder solely using them.
1625 CEST - 22km - 1'08" is the gap, it's
still growing. The leading threesome of stars are working well together - for
now. Devolder goes again. O'Grady has a lot of fight left though, and is trying
to get back. It must be frustrating for two such good riders to have to be
forced to hold back because their captains are up front, and they're giving it
everything they've got now. Spartacus (Cancellara's nick) is riding smoothly.
Hoste, O'Grady, and Devolder 40 seconds. The first chasing group is now 1:10
behind the three leaders. The podium is almost certain - but in what order?
1632 CEST: 19km to go - Three kilometres
till the Carrefour de l'Arbre, it could break this race. The nerves are showing
in the riding of our three front-runners... they all know what is coming up.
Ballan powers along... is he testing his companions?
16km to go. Carrefour de l'Arbre...
Cancellara takes off! Ballan tries to close the gap, Boonen takes over. And the
gap is closed, dangerman Cancellara is reined in this time.
Huge crowds are on the side of the road - many with Flemish flags, all to
support "Tommeke" Boonen. Cancellara doesn't look comfortable on Boonen's wheel.
Boonen, Cancellara and Ballan on the Carrefour... and the favourites come off
the five-star section still together. What now for Ballan and Cancellara, what
now? They can't tow Boonen to the finish... Boonen sets the pace a bit higher,
testing his opponents. Ballan is in difficulty.
Cancellara attacks, but Boonen reacts. Ballan is still hanging in there. not
slow at the finish line either when it may come to a sprint... up to Ballan
still hanging in, he's is the joker, certainly. How much does Ballan have left?
How much do all three have left? Cancellara has the power to challenge a more
jaded Boonen in the sprint - he's no slow coach.
With 12 kms to go, Cancellara tries again! Boonen also attacks! The
psychological warfare is raging. Ballan is the only one not too make extra
efforts.My money is on Boonen - he isn't going to lose it from here, he's shown
that he's equal to Cancellara. Now for the coup de grace. I think Ballan has to
attack, he won't win otherwise
1544 CEST - Just 9 kilometres to go to
the finish of this Monument. If Boonen does not wins, there will, be huge
pressure on him in belgium, huge pressure for the tour and so on. he simply has
to win, according to impatient Belgium. Alessandro Ballan leads Cancellara and
Boonen, the three best Classics riders of this generation arguably. Well, he
certainly has all the cards right now.Boonen looks so determined
Ballan the only one of this trio who has not won this classic yet. He came
close several times, but if he wins this will be his first But Ballan will have
1645 CEST - 8 kilometres left, and this
is the penultimate section. It's one star, it's Hem. Ballan leads them over it;
will the attacks rain afterwards? They have 2'38" to the closest pursuers by the
way, impressive riding. The pace is devastating.
6 kilometres to go, suddenly they all
look very weary. Who can win... Cancellara wants Sunderland at his side once
more to check all uncertainties? to rule them out? It looks like Boonen to me;
Ballan is either very wily or very tired, and Cancellara looks tired.Boonen
still has to be very attentive, it's his to lose.
5 km to go, Boonen knows he can't give
Cancellara two meters; or one metre for that matter. It has not been a Classic
muddy, rainy, hellish edition of Paris-Roubaix as anticipated, but we still have
an amazing finish with three stars. They have made this race. With good help
from their teams.
Next cobble section three stars, with a five-star rating like the most
difficult cobbles the have conquered today 4km to go. Ballan has a quick look at
his rivals' faces, they're giving nothing away though. boonens last win was in
the tour of California, in February
less than 4 km to go, Cancellara has already won a Monument - Milano-San Remo.
How he'd love another cobblestone trophy though. they are close to the track
Hopefully not a repeat of 2005 Psychologically, it can't help knowing that green
jersey winner Boonen is with them when Boonen won.
Cancellara stretches, the pace is still high though. Just over 2,500 metres
to go. If he wins, Cancellara would be only the third rider to win Milan-San
Remo and Paris-Roubaix the same year after Sean Kelly (1986) and Cyrille Van
Hauwaert in 1908. If Boonen wins, he shuts up the persistent, nagging critics
and lifts the pressure of a nation off his shoulders.
Ballan, Cancellara and Boonen - final lap on the track. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
2km to go, And Ballan? Always a quiet
favourite, he is just as good as his two rivals. Perhaps not at sprinting
though... Belgian commentators mention: Boonen HAS to win, he has no choice but
win on the track I wouldn't have counted on a sprint if I were Ballan, but he
must have been worn out. The tension is unbearable. That must be on
his mind right now, I guess... who will win this 106th edition?
Ballan leads onto the track... last lap
Tom Boonen Wins!!!!!!!!!!
Boonen out distances Cancellara and Ballan for the 2008 victory.
Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
Easily... neither Ballan nor Cancellara had anything to fire with. What a
win! The mark of a true champion, he distanced them easily within 150 metres.
Close for second place. Boonen took off round the outside, and he had no real
competition for the win in the end
Rivals Boonen and Cancellara share a hug as Ballan follows after the sprint
while Quick Step's D.S. Wilfried Peeters and soigneur Dirk Nachtergaele are
celebrating. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
Cancellara is credited with second, Ballan takes third. How quickly that
sprinting grimace turned into a smile as he celebrated. All this fuss right now
makes it more quiet for him, he will have some peace around him now. He looked
mightily relieved as he crossed the line
Who's next in the velodrome? Cameras have been focused on the leaders for the
last 20km. Devolder, O'Grady and Hoste, seemingly. Maaskant looks to have given
the other the slip...
1 Boonen, 2 Cancellara, 3 Ballan. Boonen looks dazed but happy. Looks like
Maaskant sure did great in this Paris-Roubaix. Under the flamme rouge for
Maaskant, what a ride! If a Slipstream rider places 4th, that certainly will be
a good day's work for the American squad. The bell rings for Maaskant. For whom
the bell tolls... and a Dutchie has to finish it off for the American squad; and
only a 24-year old Dutchy at that! Excellent result for Slipstream... 4th.
And we have our surprise Top-5
Stuart O'Grady gets the leap on Leif Hoste to claim 5th. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
O'Grady 5th, Hoste 6th, Devolder 7th Vansummeren 8th.
Scott Sunderlands talks to Danish TV, explaining Cancellara had cramp for the
final kilometres. "He did his best" the Aussie says. That's why he couldn't
sprint. Saw him shaking his legs... near the end.
Vlaanderen-Roubaix double for Quick Step, their tactics have been spot on.4
Belgian riders in the top 8. High Road leads the group behind. Flecha sprints
for 9th. They covered the 260km in under 6 hours, impressive time. Hincapie 9th.
This has been an awful day for THR, they would have wanted a better result than
Stijn Devolder Belgian Champion finishes in 7th. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
2008 Paris - Roubaix Results (top 17
1. BOONEN Tom 51 QUICK STEP 5h 58' 42"
2. CANCELLARA Fabian 5 TEAM CSC 5h 58' 42"
3. BALLAN Alessandro 71 LAMPRE 5h 58' 42"
4. MAASKANT Martijn 247 SLIPSTREAM CHIPOTLE 6h 02' 21" + 03' 39"
5. O’GRADY Stuart 1 TEAM CSC 6h 02' 39" + 03' 57"
6. HOSTE Leif 31 SILENCE - LOTTO 6h 02' 39" + 03' 57"
7. DEVOLDER Stijn 54 QUICK STEP 6h 02' 41" + 03' 59"
8. VAN SUMMEREN Johan 37 SILENCE - LOTTO
9. HINCAPIE George 61 HIGH ROAD 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
Bernhard Eisel leads out George Hincapie for 9th place. Photo © 2008 Bart Hazen
10. BALDATO Fabio 72 LAMPRE 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
11. GUESDON Frédéric 121 FRANCAISE DES JEUX 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
12. FLECHA Juan Antonio 11 RABOBANK 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
13. QUINZIATO Manuel 47 LIQUIGAS 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
14. DE VOCHT Wim 32 SILENCE - LOTTO 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
15. SCHEIRLINCKX Staf 107 COFIDIS CREDIT PAR TELEPHONE 6h 0
16. LJUNGQVIST Marcus 8 TEAM CSC 6h 03' 54" + 05' 12"
17. EISEL Bernhard 62 HIGH ROAD 6h 04' 02" + 05' 20"
Did Baldato nick a top 10 in his last Roubaix? Mengin was up there too.
Indeed, on paper, the strongest team was High Road. Eisel crashed though,
Hincapie was held up... some bad luck.
"I went better than expected. I'm happy with how things have gone... We've
got nothing to complain about, we've ridden the race we planned and Boonen was
the strongest on the day," comments Stuart O'Grady
Not sure I agree about HR being the strongest team... Knaven doesn't count
(it's years since he's shown anything), and none of the other riders are notably
better than the support riders on other teams.
Boonen comments on the pressure put on
him via Belgian papers: they say I am like soo long without a real win.... sure
looks like this was high in his system, it sorta came out before him saying he
was happy with this win.
I'm going through the archives crazily, and this is the fastest Paris-Roubaix
for 20 years. Maybe more...
That's quite a top ten - kudos to surprise package Maaskant and super
workhorse Van Summeren in particular. Did I say workhorse, I meant work giraffe.
That guy is so tall! I like some of the other riders in the Top-20... Ljunqvuist,
Quinziato, Guesdon... good to see. Quinziato for one surprises me, 13th; but not
so much after De Panne. An excellent race that we have witnessed; just a pity
that neither Ballan nor Cancellara had anything left in the tank to give us
proper fireworks on the last 5kms.
Thanks for joining us for our live coverage. Thanks to Andy McGrath and Nick
Bull in London, Anita Van Crey in Belgium and Michael Akinde in Denmark for the
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28 Pave Sections - 57 total kms
13 194,5 1400m De Beuvry-la-forêt à Orchies
12 199,5 1700m Orchies
11 205,5 1200m De Auchy-lez-Orchies à Bersée
10 211,0 3000m Mons-en-Pévèle
09 217,0 0700m De Mér
09 217,0 0700m De Mérignies à Pont-à-Marcq
08 220,0 1400m De Pont-Thibaut à Ennevelin
07 225,5 0200m Templeuve - L’Épinette
07 226,0 0500m Templeuve - Moulin-de-Vertain
06 232,5 1300m De Cysoing à Bourghelles
06 235,0 1100m De Bourghelles à Wannehain
05 239,5 1800m Camphin-en-Pévèle
04 242,5 2100m Carrefour de l’Arbre
03 244,5 1100m Gruson
02 251,5 1400m Hem
01 258,0 0300m Espace Crupela
1. Andrew Fenn, 122km in 3:12'33.
2. Peter Sagan
3. Etienne Fedrigo
4. Emil Houmand
5. Michael Humbert
6. Barry Markus
7. Kenneth Vanbilsen
8. Ramon Domene
9. Romain Bacon
10. Nicolas Vereecken
11. Boris Zimne
12. Pablo Lechuga
13. Erick Rowsell
14. Damien Le Fustec
15. Toby Meadows
16. Sebastian Lander
17. Nejc Kosir
18. Claudio Mhof
19. George Atkins
20. Matvey Zubov
21. Alphonse Vermote
22. Luke Rowe
23. Sjoerd Kouwenhoven
24. Arnaud Demare
25. Gennadiy Tatarnov
26. Benjamin Sydlik
27. Bastian Burgel
28. Gil Jacot Descombes
29. Kokljaer Kristensen
30. Victor Fobert