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Cancellara wins his third Paris-Roubaix

Fabian Cancellara (RadioShack Leopard) pulled off a thrilling performance to win the 2013 Paris-Roubaix in a dramatic sprint finish with Sep Vanmarcke (Blanco). Niki Terpstra (Omega Pharma QuickStep) sealed the final place on the podium.

Cancellara and Vanmarcke pulled clear on the Carrefour de l'Arbre pave when Stijn Vandenbergh (Omega Pharma QuickStep) and then his teammate Zdenek Stybar crashed into spectators. But for one last ditch attack from Cancellara in the closing five kilometres, the leading duo shared the pace setting all the way to the Roubaix velodrome.

Vanmarcke led out, but Cancellara simply had more in the tank and had enough to win his third Roubaix title and his second Flanders and Roubaix double of his career.

“I was in another world of riding! I still don’t know how I did it. I was dropped and pretty far back but then I started to move up. This is a race you can never give up on until the end. I had to play with him in the end because I tried to go away but he followed so then I knew it was man against man. I’m happy for the team and for me. Now I look forward to rest and a holiday. Mission accomplished,” Cancellara said.

The foundations for Cancellara's win were built on solid work from his teammates, who controlled the race in the opening 200 kilometres, never allowing a break to gain more than two minutes and then shepherding their leader towards the front on the Auchy-lez-Orchies - Bersée sector of pave.

It was clear from as early as last weekend's Flanders triumph that Cancellara would be the marked man, but he took the race by the scruff of the neck and although his surge forward in Orchies didn't win him the race, it drew out his main challengers. Thor Hushovd, Taylor Phinney and Edvald Boasson Hagen were the first to fall by the wayside but those that remained played their cards, and allowed Cancellara both a brief respite and opportunity to see would match him.

By the end of the 11th sector, only Cancellara, the Omega Pharma-Quickstep trio Nikki Terpstra, Zdenek Stybar and Vandenbergh, Europcar duo Sébastien Turgot, Damien Gaudin, Blanco duo Sep Vanmarcke and Lars Boom and also Sebastiaan Langeveld, Greg Van Avermaet (BMC), Bernard Eisel (Sky), Juan Antonio Flecha (Vacansoleil-DCM) and Luca Paolini (Katusha) remained in contention.

In front, Langeveld and Vanmarcke anticipated the next pavé stretch where Vandenbergh and Gaudin impressed as they rode away from the rest of the group. Behind the four leaders, a poker game unfolded. The result was that four more riders rode away from the Cancellara group. When exiting sector 7, the eight leaders were Langeveld, Vanmarcke, Gaudin, Vandenbergh, Stybar, Van Avermaet, Flecha and Paolini.

On the roads towards sector 6, Cancellara closed to the eight leaders on his own, by far his most impressive feat in the race. Having dropped back to his team car and dragging Boom, Terpstra and Eisel with him, he quickly realised he had isolated three major threats. Within a flash, he had left them for dust and was soon back with the Flecha group.

Meanwhile Vandenbergh and Vanmarcke didn't wait for Spartacus and snuck off the front. When reaching sector 6, Cancellara and also Terpstra joined the chase group, half a minute behind the two Belgian leaders. On the same section where Cancellara crashed during the reconnaissance, the second part of sector 6, the cobbles of Bourghelles à Wannehain, the Swiss rider accelerated. Only Stybar was able to keep up with Spartacus.

While Cancellara time trialed towards the two leaders on the wide roads after the cobbles, Stybar tried to hold his wheel. Just before reaching sectors 5 and 4 there were four leaders in the race: Cancellara, Vanmarcke and teammates Vandenbergh and Stybar. Chasers Flecha, Langeveld, Terpstra, Van Avermaet and Gaudin were half a minute down on the leaders. A large group with Boom, Eisel, Paolini, Kristoff, Leukemans and others were further behind.
Vandenbergh was already losing contact on the cobbles of the Carrefour de l'Arbre when he clipped a spectator and fell in the early phase of the sector, leaving Stybar with the difficult job of marking both Cancellara and Vanmarcke.

The former cyclo-cross star looked comfortable on the cobbles though, but when he also rode into a fan, there was no way back.

Bright skies for Compiègne start

In contrast to the massive crowds in Bruges last week, the start in Compiègne was much more low-key. Teams were still rolling in toward the Place Charles de Gaulle in front of the Compiègne castle less than an hour before the start of the race. While temperatures dived under freezing point early in the morning, the sun did enough to persuade riders to wear short-sleeved kits once the race got underway at 10:20 am.

The pace was high right from the start with many teams trying to get a rider in the breakaway group. Thirteen riders managed to get a gap after 17km of racing, but the sizeable group didn't receive the ok from the peloton. The outcome was a blistering fast first hour of racing, averaging just under 50km per hour. The group was caught, and several more attempts fell short.

Upon hitting the first pavé sectors after 100km of racing, the peloton was back together. On the second cobbled stretch of the day, there was a crash which quickly reduced the peloton and hindered men like Stijn Devolder and Ian Stannard. In front, four riders finally managed to get away. Former winner Stuart O'Grady (Orica-Greenedge) was joined by Gert Steegmans (Omega Pharma-Quickstep), Matthew Hayman (Sky) and Clément Koretzky (Bretagne-Seche Environnement). The four got away in sector 22, at 124km from the finish. Behind them, André Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) tried to bridge up but the German sprinter fell short. At the back of the peloton, Yoann Offredo (FDJ) crashed out of the race when he didn't notice a traffic island.

The four leaders built up a lead of more than two minutes over the peloton where Team Saxo-Tinkoff set the pace for their leader Matti Breschel when heading towards the famous Wallers-Arenberg forest. Steegmans led the breakaway into the Trouée Arenberg with a gap of 1:30 on the peloton. Thanks to the efforts from Taylor Phinney (BMC), John Degenkolb (Argos-Shimano) and Stijn Vandenbergh (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) that gap was brought down to 40 seconds once out of the 2400m long pavé sector. In contrast to previous years, there were barely no crashes in this zone.

The four leaders struggled to hold off the peloton which at sector 17 closed in to touching distance. Nevertheless they reached sector 16 with a 30-second bonus. At that point Steegmans and Hayman left their companions behind. At the same time, Michael Schär (BMC) launched a solo move to join the leaders. In the peloton, outsiders like Filippo Pozzato (Lampre-Merida), Matthieu Ladagnous (FDJ) and Geraint Thomas (Sky) were affected by a crash while BMC's leader Thor Hushovd (BMC) flatted.

After 185km of racing and with 69km left to cover, the riders reached the second feed zone. The duo forced Schär to work hard and long but 20km after his initial acceleration, he finally joined the two leaders. A little later, Damien Gaudin (Europcar) bridged up with the leaders, who were riding only half a minute ahead of the reduced peloton.

Sector 11 was the first one where Cancellara moved to the front and from there the pace never dropped. By the time the race reached sector 10, the famous Mons-en-Pévèle the leaders were caught.

Former Paris-Roubaix winner Johan Vansummeren (Garmin-Sharp) flatted while his compatriot Stijn Vandenbergh (Omega Pharma-Quickstep) impressed in front. No more than 13 riders survived the selection of this sector. They were top favourite Cancellara, Terpstra, Stybar, Vandenbergh, Turgot, Gaudin, Vanmarcke, Boom, Langeveld, Van Avermaet, Eisel, Flecha and Paolini. A little later, Turgot dropped out of the lead group with a flat tyre and Cancellara moved into position.

“It’s amazing having a third victory. When I see how in this race everyone was against our team, against me, I just had to do a selection. The team came into a little bit of difficulty because we lost a few guys because of bad luck. But that’s Roubaix. It’s always nice to win alone but today there was pure fighting until the very end. I could not believe it when I crossed the finish line. My legs and my head wanted to bring me here,” Cancellara said.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Fabian Cancellara (Swi) RadioShack Leopard5:45:33
2Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
3Niki Terpstra (Ned) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team0:00:31
4Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
5Damien Gaudin (Fra) Team Europcar
6Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team0:00:39
7Sebastian Langeveld (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge
8Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
9Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Katusha0:00:50
10Sébastien Turgot (Fra) Team Europcar
11Heinrich Haussler (Aus) IAM Cycling
12Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Sky Procycling
13Maarten Wynants (Bel) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
14Lars Boom (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
15Matti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
16Björn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
17Steve Chainel (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
18Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
19Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
20Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
21Luca Paolini (Ita) Katusha0:01:00
22Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Lampre-Merida0:02:52
23Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team0:03:13
24Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Lotto Belisol
25Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
26Johan Le Bon (Fra) FDJ0:03:17
27Lloyd Mondory (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
28John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Argos-Shimano0:03:29
29Adrien Petit (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
30Robert Wagner (Ger) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
31Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Astana Pro Team
32Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
33Roger Kluge (Ger) Team NetApp-Endura
34Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team
35Thor Hushovd (Nor) BMC Racing Team
36Tom Veelers (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
37Francisco José Ventoso Alberdi (Spa) Movistar Team
38Iljo Keisse (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
39Marco Bandiera (Ita) IAM Cycling
40Gael Malacarne (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
41Martin Elmiger (Swi) IAM Cycling
42Sébastien Hinault (Fra) IAM Cycling
43Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto Belisol
44Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Argos-Shimano
45Sébastien Minard (Fra) Ag2R La Mondiale
46Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica-GreenEdge
47Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling
48Bjorn Thurau (Ger) Team Europcar
49Vladimir Gusev (Rus) Katusha0:03:32
50Johan Van Summeren (Bel) Garmin-Sharp
51Ian Stannard (GBr) Sky Procycling
52Mathew Hayman (Aus) Sky Procycling
53Hayden Roulston (NZl) RadioShack Leopard0:06:07
54Stijn Devolder (Bel) RadioShack Leopard0:06:11
55Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
56Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Cannondale Pro Cycling
57Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
58Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-Sharp0:08:37
59Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Movistar Team0:10:27
60Ioannis Tamouridis (Gre) Euskaltel-Euskadi
61Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Ag2R La Mondiale
62Florent Barle (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
63José Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Movistar Team
64Rudiger Selig (Ger) Katusha
65Pierre-Luc Perrichon (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
66Jos Van Emden (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
67Viacheslav Kuznetsov (Rus) Katusha
68André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol
69Arnaud Labbe (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
70Jack Bauer (NZl) Garmin-Sharp
71Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing Team
72William Bonnet (Fra) FDJ0:10:30
73Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin-Sharp0:13:16
74Nikolas Maes (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team0:13:42
75Clément Koretzky (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
76Dmitriy Muravyev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team0:14:34
77Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Sojasun
78Roy Curvers (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
79Geraint Thomas (GBr) Sky Procycling
80Jesse Sergent (NZl) RadioShack Leopard
81Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
82Imanol Erviti (Spa) Movistar Team
83Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale Pro Cycling
84Bob Jungels (Lux) RadioShack Leopard
85Benoit Jarrier (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
86Grégory Rast (Swi) RadioShack Leopard0:14:38
87Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
88Yohann Gene (Fra) Team Europcar
89Andrea Palini (Ita) Lampre-Merida
90Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ0:14:40
91Wesley Kreder (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
92Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
93Vegard Stake Laengen (Nor) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
94Jonas Aaen Jörgensen (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
95Jan Barta (Cze) Team NetApp-Endura0:19:12
96Stuart O'grady (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge0:20:37
97Gabriel Rasch (Nor) Sky Procycling
98Anders Lund (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
99Ricardo Garcia Ambroa (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
100Yannick Talabardon (Fra) Sojasun
101Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) RadioShack Leopard
102Gediminas Bagdonas (Ltu) Ag2R La Mondiale
103Michael Morkov (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff0:25:31
104Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Arg) Cannondale Pro Cycling
105Marko Kump (Slo) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
106Dominic Klemme (Ger) IAM Cycling
107Andreas Schillinger (Ger) Team NetApp-Endura
108Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Team NetApp-Endura
109Luke Rowe (GBr) Sky Procycling0:26:16
110Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
111Edward King (USA) Cannondale Pro Cycling
112William Clarke (Aus) Team Argos-Shimano
113Arman Kamyshev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
114Jetse Bol (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
115Russell Downing (GBr) Team NetApp-Endura
116Andrea Guardini (Ita) Astana Pro Team
117Morgan Lamoisson (Fra) Team Europcar
118Christopher Juul Jensen (Den) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
HDTom Stamsnijder (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano0:43:59
DNFGuillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
DNFSébastien Chavanel (Fra) Team Europcar
DNFJerome Cousin (Fra) Team Europcar
DNFDavid Veilleux (Can) Team Europcar
DNFMarkel Irizar Aranburu (Spa) RadioShack Leopard
DNFMarcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team
DNFDaniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing Team
DNFDanilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team
DNFSalvatore Puccio (Ita) Sky Procycling
DNFRick Flens (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team
DNFMarco Haller (Aut) Katusha
DNFVladimir Isaichev (Rus) Katusha
DNFGatis Smukulis (Lat) Katusha
DNFAndreas Klier (Ger) Garmin-Sharp
DNFRaymond Kreder (Ned) Garmin-Sharp
DNFJacob Rathe (USA) Garmin-Sharp
DNFSébastien Rosseler (Bel) Garmin-Sharp
DNFMatthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ
DNFDavid Boucher (Fra) FDJ
DNFMickael Delage (Fra) FDJ
DNFMurilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) FDJ
DNFYoann Offredo (Fra) FDJ
DNFLars Ytting Bak (Den) Lotto Belisol
DNFKenny De Haes (Bel) Lotto Belisol
DNFJens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Belisol
DNFGreg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Belisol
DNFVicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Lotto Belisol
DNFBorut Bozic (Slo) Astana Pro Team
DNFEvan Huffman (USA) Astana Pro Team
DNFRuslan Tleubayev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
DNFFumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Orica-GreenEdge
DNFBaden Cooke (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
DNFMitchell Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
DNFJens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge
DNFBertjan Lindeman (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
DNFMirko Selvaggi (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
DNFFrederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
DNFElia Favilli (Ita) Lampre-Merida
DNFMassimo Graziato (Ita) Lampre-Merida
DNFAlessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-Merida
DNFMaximiliano Ariel Richeze (Arg) Lampre-Merida
DNFDavide Vigano (Ita) Lampre-Merida
DNFLuca Wackermann (Ita) Lampre-Merida
DNFKristof Goddaert (Bel) IAM Cycling
DNFGustav Larsson (Swe) IAM Cycling
DNFAleksejs Saramotins (Lat) IAM Cycling
DNFKoen De Kort (Ned) Team Argos-Shimano
DNFDavide Appollonio (Ita) Ag2R La Mondiale
DNFHugo Houle (Can) Ag2R La Mondiale
DNFValentin Iglinskiy (Kaz) Ag2R La Mondiale
DNFJimmy Engoulvent (Fra) Sojasun
DNFMaxime Daniel (Fra) Sojasun
DNFChristophe Laborie (Fra) Sojasun
DNFRony Martias (Fra) Sojasun
DNFJean-Lou Paiani (Fra) Sojasun
DNFEvaldas Siskevicius (Ltu) Sojasun
DNFGuillaume Boivin (Can) Cannondale Pro Cycling
DNFMauro Da Dalto (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
DNFAlan Marangoni (Ita) Cannondale Pro Cycling
DNFEgoitz Garcia Echeguibel (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFJan Ghyselinck (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFGert Joeaar (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFNico Sijmens (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFRomain Zingle (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNFMarkus Eichler (Ger) Team NetApp-Endura
DNFBlaz Jarc (Slo) Team NetApp-Endura
DNFAlexander Wetterhall (Swe) Team NetApp-Endura
DNFAlex Dowsett (GBr) Movistar Team
DNFJesus Herrada Lopez (Spa) Movistar Team
DNFEloy Teruel Rovira (Spa) Movistar Team
DNFJean-Luc Delpech (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
DNFFlorian Vachon (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
DNFBenjamin Le Montagner (Fra) Bretagne-Seche Environnement
DNFPeio Bilbao (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
DNFJuan Jose Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
DNFSteffen Radochla (Ger) Euskaltel-Euskadi
DNFAdrian Saez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
DNFAndré Schulze (Ger) Euskaltel-Euskadi
DSQGiovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team


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