Thor Hushovd and Garmin-Cervelo teammate Johan Vansummeren have taken a first look at Paris-Roubaix with the new team Classics advisor Peter van Petegem. Hushovd has finished second and third in the race the last two years and is aiming to win it this year wearing the World Championship jersey.
The trio had hoped to recon the cobblestones unnoticed, but they were spotted. “We wanted to do it quietly so we could do our thing,” van Petegem told Het Nieuwsblad. “Thor combined this ride with a strong workout. We ended up on the stretch after the Carrefour de l'Arbre. The stones there are very bad, lots of mud and puddles.”
Hushovd tried a new bike, “that is slightly longer with a custom fork. He also tested some tires.”
The Norwegian had ridden the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday, while Vansummeren rode the Omloop and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, but both took on the muddy cobblestones of Paris-Roubaix on Monday. “I guess that says everything about the ambition that we both have,” Vansummeren told Het Belang van Limburg.
"Initially we chatted, but after a time we didn't. Thor was in a good rhythm,” he continued. “We also had to be extra careful, because the stones were covered in mud.”
Van Petegem, who won Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Flanders in 2003, has joined Garmin-Cervelo as an advisor through Paris-Roubaix.