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Stuyven: Lappartient should focus on rider safety rather than moving Paris-Roubaix

LE CREUSOT FRANCE JULY 02 Jasper Stuyven of Belgium and Team Trek Segafredo at arrival during the 108th Tour de France 2021 Stage 7 a 2491km km stage from Vierzon to Le Creusot 369m LeTour TDF2021 on July 02 2021 in Le Creusot France Photo by Benoit Tessier PoolGetty Images
Former Milan San-Remo winner Stuyven feels Paris-Roubaix should remain in the Spring (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

UCI President David Lappartient should focus on rider safety ahead of considering rescheduling the Spring Classics to October, Jasper Stuyven said ahead of targeting Paris-Roubaix  with Trek-Segafredo teammate Mads Pedersen this weekend.

Stuyven argued that it would potentially mean "worse weather" in the already dangerous race.

"I saw today the Tour of Turkey, and I think Lappartient is always claiming to care for our rider safety, that he should maybe focus on that instead of changing the calendar," Stuyven said as he sat alongside Pedersen and faced questions. 

 "I'm not saying it should never happen again but putting it there is only making your advertising video nicer for the upcoming year."

Mads Pedersen similarly criticised suggestions of moving the race, which was held in October for the first time ever last season having been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"If you take a monument from the spring Classics and move them, you don't have the Classics anymore," Pedersen suggested. 

"Why not move the other races instead of the Classics? The Basque country races could also be at the end of the season. So for me, it would be a pity if that's going to be the decision," he added.

Lappartient made the comments in an interview with Wielerflits, celebrating the new position in the schedule as "This was one of the most heroic editions of 'l'Enfer du Nord' in history." Other riders and team manager have also come out against the idea.

Stuyven and Pedersen preferred to talk about Sunday's Paris-Roubaix, the growing tension and excitement clearly visible and audible in their responses to questions.  

Former world champion Pedersen has had a successful early season and solid results in the cobbled Classics so far. He believes in his chances.

"The shape is good. I truly believe I can be in the mix of the win on Sunday," he said.

Commenting on the weather conditions, Pedersen said: "I don't like 20 degrees, and it's going to be 17/18 on Sunday. So definitely eight degrees would have been better. But at least it's not 30."

Stuyven added: "We know that Sunday is the race that fits us the best so we know we have the shape and we did our preparation. So we are racing to win on Sunday."

Amid some sightings of a new dedicated cobbled bike from Trek, likely the next generation of the Trek Domane, Pedersen and Stuyven explained they couldn't comment on which bike they will be riding for the weekend.

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Peter Stuart has been editor of Cyclingnews since March 2022, overseeing editorial output across all of Cyclingnews' digital touchpoints.

Before joining Cyclingnews, Peter was the digital editor of Rouleur magazine. Starting life as a freelance feature writer, with bylines in The Times and The Telegraph, he first entered cycling journalism in 2012, joining Cyclist magazine as staff writer. Peter has a background as an international rower, representing Great Britain at Under-23 level and at the Junior Rowing World Championships.