By Brecht Decaluwé in Roubaix, France
Quick Step's Stijn Devolder believes he will need a few days to recover following a crash at the weekend's Pars-Roubaix. The Ronde van Vlaanderen winner was considered one of the top riders in this year's Roubaix, but the Belgian's efforts came to a crashing halt.
"It was tough and I'll need some time to recover from this but the most important thing is that we won the race with our team," Devolder said. "I crashed hard in the forest. They crashed right in front of me.
"I managed to jump over the first one but then I went down hard as I rode into the next rider," Devolder said. "I've got a serious cut in my shinbone."
Devolder had lost one minute on the leaders after the Trouée d'Arenberg. The former Belgian champion started pulling in the second group with teammate Sylvain Chavanel and 10 kilometres later they managed to catch the leaders but then a punctured set Devolder back again.
Twenty kilometres later the race exploded with a series of upsets. George Hincapie punctured as the Saxo Bank team started pulling into the crosswinds and Tom Boonen (Quick Step) attacked while a motorbike crashed into spectators. From that moment on Devolder was out of sight.
"After [my] crash I thought about stepping out of the race several times but then I decided to ride on until the finish," said Devolder.