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Hincapie: I can see Phinney winning Paris-Roubaix in the future

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Taylor Phinney (BMC)

Taylor Phinney (BMC)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Smokey the Bear pays his respects to George Hincapie in Golden, Colorado prior to the BMC American's last road race in the professional peloton.

Smokey the Bear pays his respects to George Hincapie in Golden, Colorado prior to the BMC American's last road race in the professional peloton.
(Image credit: Jonathan Devich/epicimages.us)
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An iconic image of George Hincapie

An iconic image of George Hincapie
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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George Hincapie kisses the dolphin back

George Hincapie kisses the dolphin back
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Taylor Phinney (BMC) on the Kemmelberg

Taylor Phinney (BMC) on the Kemmelberg
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Taylor Phinney (BMC) helps to drive the pace

Taylor Phinney (BMC) helps to drive the pace
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Taylor Phinney putting in a shift for BMC

Taylor Phinney putting in a shift for BMC
(Image credit: Courtesy of Polartec-Kometa)

George Hincapie can see Taylor Phinney competing with the best riders in Paris-Roubaix this year and has tipped the American to one day win the race.

Phinney won Paris-Roubaix at Under 23 level twice - in 2009 and 2010 - and has again established himself in BMC core Classics team after suffering a career threatening injury in 2014.

Phinney helped Greg Van Avermaet seal the overall classification in Tirreno-Adriatico last month before riding well in Gent-Wevelgem last week. He will form part on the squad around Van Avermaet in the Tour of Flanders on Sunday, but Hincapie expects the 25-year-old to come into his own on the pave in Paris-Roubaix a week later.

“If there’s any American rider who can take up the reigns after me then it’s Phinney,” Hincapie told Cyclingnews.

“He’s incredibly powerful rider and he has everything that it takes. He’s a great bike handler and can position himself well. If he’s fully recovered from his injury, and he looked great in Gent Wevelgem working for Greg, I think he’ll get better this week and I think he can be a contender in Roubaix. With the week he’s had, he can be a winner in he future.”

As for the Tour of Flanders, Hincapie sees a cluster of riders capable of winning, rather than one stand-out contender.

“There are many players in the mix for Sunday. If you’ve been watching the races leading up to this, Edvald Boasson Hagen has been having a great year. He’ll be right up there. Then you have Sagan and Cancellara, and Greg Van Avermaet has has been having the year of his life. Boonen has had a rough start to the year but he’s looking better every day too."