Paris Roubaix Reactions
Johan Museeuw (fifth place), in an emotional last Paris-Roubaix, was robbed of a chance of a fourth victory by a cruel, late puncture. "I dare to say this" said Museeuw, "I thought my fourth victory was in the making. I raced at the front, and thought 'I win today'. 2 seconds later, I hear 'sssss' [the deflation of his tyre]. It is nonetheless natural that I am emotional, the way I took farewell was large. I participated at the highest level for my own gain, but I had bad luck."
Sixth place Peter van Petegem's late puncture very likely cost him a victory
today. He said that at that point, "My legs felt possibly still better than
in 2003. After that I still came after Museeuw, but he told me that he had
problems with his acceleration. He was gone. On the sprint Museeuw asked me to
take his hand. I did it, but I would have rather tried to win the sprint. If
Johan and I had not punctured, it would have been us for the victory."
British champion Roger Hammond, third place. "Bäckstedt was simply too
strong, I saw that the last 15 kilometres. That sprint, wow. I messed up in the
sprint and I paid for it (letting Backstedt pass him). On the other hand am I
very glad that I am third in my dream race. I had never thought that I would
line up in the last 100 meters of my dream race for the victory. Magnus has a
most deserved won, he showed that on Wednesday at Gent-Wevelgem (where he was
Tristan Hoffmann (second place): "This is one of the races which I can
certainly win. I got a serious chance here today but, perhaps I will succeed
later. I really wanted to win today, but I'm happy I at least came on the podium. When I have some time to think about the experience, I'll probably be happy with second spot."