Lotto-Davitamon and CSC reconnaissance

Lotto-Davitamon left at 9.30 am on Friday morning to scout all the cobbled sections of...

Lotto-Davitamon left at 9.30 am on Friday morning to scout all the cobbled sections of Paris-Roubaix. More than likely the riders will be experiencing the same weather conditions as are predicted for the weekend. Their team selection: Wim De Vocht, Nico Mattan, Bert Roesems, Tom Steels, Leon Van Bon, Peter Van Petegem, Aart Vierhouten and Henk Vogels.

Their colleagues from the CSC team already did their reconnaissance on Thursday. Team director Scott Sunderland said, "It went very well. We covered all of the new sections of the parcours. We only got a sprinkle of rain, nothing bad. The redesigned route is a lot hillier in between the sections of cobbles; in general the whole parcours is more undulating. There's one section of cobbles, 4.4 km long followed by 500m normal road, and then again 1.6km of cobbles which I think will be a critical point in the race. Alain Gallopin agreed with me that this year's edition of Paris-Roubaix will be a tough one, harder than previous years and Lars Michaelsen also has that idea."

Being a freshly retired pro, Scott seemingly can't get enough of it. Today he's out on the bike on the parcours again, in the company of a group of American tourists. Cyclingnews contacted him to enquire about the state of the parcours: "It's a lot worse today, believe it or not. There's a greasy film on the cobbles, it's muddy and slippery. A lot different to how it was to ride yesterday. I think the race will definitely blow open a lot earlier this year; they won't be waiting long to give it a good lashing. We've had no rain so far but the skies look threatening."

The CSC selection: Lars Bak, Matti Breschel, Thomas Bruun Eriksen, Vladimir Gussev, Allan Johansen, Lars Michaelsen, Christian Müller. Luke Roberts

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