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Van der Poel's Alpecin-Fenix squad leads Paris-Roubaix wildcards

Mathieu van der Poel
Van der Poel tackles the cobbles of Gent-Wevelgem in 2019 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Paris-Roubaix organiser ASO has announced six wildcard invitations for the 2020 edition of the race, which will be run on April 12. The biggest news among the wildcards is the invitation of Mathieu van der Poel's Alpecin-Fenix team.

The Dutchman, who last year won Amstel Gold Race and Dwars door Vlaanderen, among other races, will tackle the cobbles of northern France for the first time this spring as he rides his fullest road calendar yet.

All four French ProTeams have secured invites, with Total Direct Énergie having an automatic invite after topping the Pro Continental rankings in 2019. They're joined by Arkéa-Samsic and B&B Hotels-Vital Concept, who will also be at the Tour.

Nippo Delko One Provence also get an invite – last year they were the best-performing French team at Roubaix, courtesy of Evaldas Šiškevičius' ninth place. Circus-Wanty Gobert, who also automatically qualified for a spot due to their second place in the Pro Continental ranks, round out the invite list.

Joining the six wildcard teams in Compiègne will be the 19 WorldTour teams, with all teams fielding seven-rider squads. Philippe Gilbert (now of Lotto Soudal) won the race last year, outsprinting Nils Politt in the Roubaix velodrome.

Paris-Roubaix is the latest confirmed addition to Van der Poel's 2020 calendar after his team was invited to Strade Bianche and Milan-San Remo last week, and before that, the Volta a Catalunya. 

The two-time cyclo-cross world champion, who will bid for a third title in Switzerland on February 2 before ending his 'cross season, is set to ride a full spring calendar from Strade Bianche through to the Ardennes Classics.

Later in the year he'll target the cross-country mountain-bike race at the Tokyo Olympics, and has expressed interest in riding the Vuelta a España if his team receives an invite.

Mathieu van der Poel's 2020 schedule

March 7: Strade Bianche

March 21: Milan-San Remo

March 23-29: Volta a Catalunya

April 1: Dwars door Vlaanderen

April 5: Tour of Flanders

April 12: Paris-Roubaix

April 15: Brabantse Pijl (unconfirmed)

April 19: Amstel Gold Race (unconfirmed)

April 22: La Flèche Wallonne (unconfirmed)

May 23-24: UCI XC MTB World Cup, Nové Mesto

June 20-21: UCI XC MTB World Cup, Andorra

June 28: UCI XC MTB World Championships, Albstadt

July 27: Olympic Games XC MTB, Tokyo