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Welcome to Cyclingnews' live coverage of Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

The day has finally arrived! We are 45 minutes away from the start of the second edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes avec Zwift. The riders and teams are being invited one-by-one onto the pre-race presentation stage in Deinan, and waving to the crowds.

Notably absent from the favourites on the start line in Deinan is none other than Marianne Vos. 

It is hard to believe that anything could top the history-making first-ever Paris-Roubaix Femmes last autumn, won in remarkable fashion by Deignan as she was crowned the inaugural champion.

There are some welcomed changes to the event this year, and we can thank ASO for these:

Second, fans were quite upset by the limited live television coverage last year, and we all missed Deignan's winning move ahead of the first cobblestone sector, Hornaing à Wandignies. This year, however, ASO promise live television that begins before the first set of cobbles, at the 40km mark.

Third, the race last year started at 8:30 am CET! This year's race starts at a much more reasonable 12:30pm CET. 

Last but not least, the route is slightly longer at 124.7km thanks to an extra opening lap in Deinan. But otherwise the route is much the same, the women's peloton will tackle 17 sectors for 29.2km of cobbles. Two are rated five-star difficulty: Mons-en-Pévèle with 49km to go, and the Carrefour de l'Arbre with 17km to go en route to the velodrome in Roubaix. 

Here are the cobblestone sectors:

Cyclingnews' Daniel Ostanek is at the start in Deinan, and he has interviewed many of the favourites this morning.

The women are lined up on the start line, ready to begin the second edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes!

And they are off!

Another pre-race favourite is Lorena Wiebes from Team DSM. She is one of the fastest sprinter in the women's peloton at the moment. It will be exciting to see what she can do at today's Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

In an exclusive Cyclingnews blog, World Champion Elisa Balsamo wrote about her recent 'golden week' of racing where she won Trofeo Alfredo Binda, Classic Brugge-De Panne and Gent-Wevelgem. Of Paris-Roubaix Femmes, she wrote:

Cyclingnews' Daniel Ostanek spoke with Balsamo at the start in Deinan, too.

Our favourite Canadian, Alison Jackson (Liv Racing Xstra), pulls out her best dance moves ahead of Paris-Roubaix Femmes. 

120km to go

The race begins with four local circuits in Deinan before the peloton heads out toward the first cobble sector : Hornaing à Wandignies (km 42.3 - 3.7 km) ****

The breakaway of five riders have extended their lead out to over one minute.

We can't forget that Lizzie Deignan made her winning move just ahead of the Hornaing à Wandignies last year, when it was least expected. This time around, the bigger teams might be more prepared to manage the early breakaway.

Crash - 103km to go

Marta Cavalli is back up on her bike and in the peloton. She is one of the pre-race favourites after her after winning Amstel Gold Race last weekend.

Cyclingnews' Laura Weislo highlighted 10 riders to watch for Paris-Roubaix Femmes. Unfortunately, Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma) was not able to start due to a positive Covid-19 test, so here is our list of 9 riders to watch:

Julie de Wilde (Plantur-Pura) has also crashed ahead of the first cobble sector.

Paris-Roubaix Femmes Route

The five riders in the breakaway have increased their lead to 1:30 minutes:

Sector 17 - Hornaing à Wandignies (3.7 km) **** 82km to go

Lutro, Erath and Masetti have pushed on ahead as Bos and Clouse have lost contact over the cobbles.

Cavalli's predictions were correct, the peloton behind is being led over the cobbles by Trek-Segafredo, and many gaps and splits have opened up as riders struggle to hold on to the fast pace.

The main field, which has been reduced drastically, is about to catch Bos and Clouse.

Time trial World Champion Ellen van Dijk (Trek-Segafredo) is using her flat-out power to reduce the gap to the breakaway. She has also single-handedly reduced the main field to some 40 riders. 

The three breakaway riders are back on the tarmac holding a one minute lead:

Sector 16 - Warlaing à Brillon (2.4 km) *** 75km to go

Van Dijk crashed in the race last year and suffered a serious concussion. She said that she was nervous and had anxiety ahead of the race this year:

Sector 15 - Tilloy à Sars-et-Rosières (2.4 km) **** - 72km to go

Van Dijk also has a flat tire and pulls over to the side of the cobbles to request a whee change. It might take a while for her team car to reach her.

Crash

Back on the pavement, Van Dijk is now getting a wheel change.

Cyclingnews' Editor Peter Stuart is following Paris-Roubaix Femmes today, and watching from the side of the cobblestone sectors. Here is a selection of images from the race.

Sector 14 - Beuvry-la-Forêt à Orchies (1.4 km) *** - 60km to go

Erath has been caught as the peloton barrel down the pavement and into the next sector at Orchies (km 64.6 - 1.7 km)

Sector 13 - Orchies (1.7 km) *** - 59km to go

Back on the pavement, but it's a bad-luck sort of day for Marta Cavalli who needs a bike change.

Canyon-SRAM's Shari Bossuyt has ridden off the side of the road, while Alison Jackson (Liv Racing Xstra) has crashed. 

Italian Champion Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) is leading the field that looks to be about 40 riders.

Other riders who are at the front off the reduced field are van den Broek-Blaak (SD Worx), Teniel Campbell (BikeExchange), and Romy Kasper (Jumbo-Visma).

Sector 12 - Auchy-lez-Orchies à Bersée (2.7 km) **** - 54km to go

Former cyclo-cross World Champion Sanne Cant (Plantur Pura) has a flat tire.

And Kopecky launches a huge attack! 

Kopecky, who won Strade Bianche and Tour of Flanders, has a gap on the field, and the only rider capable of following her is former World Champion Marta Bastianelli (UAE Team ADQ).

Bastianelli takes a corner wide and Kopecky briefly rides off the side of the road, but she saved it and is back on the Italian's wheel.

The peloton is completely shattered behind the two leaders.

Coryn Labecki (Jumbo-Visma) has a flat tire.

The race is briefly back on the pavement. 

Sector 11 - Mons-en-Pévèle (3 km) ***** - 48km to go

World Champion Elisa Balsamo (Trek-Segafredo) has a flat tire.

Van Dijk is no longer at the front of the race but here is an image of her blowing the peloton to pieces earlier in the race

Bastianelli is so powerful over the cobbles, she is pulling Brand and Kopecky through the last few hundred metres of the Mons-en-Pévèle, often riding the faster line along the dirt at the sides of the roads.

In case you missed it, there is a dangerous breakaway that has emerged and they have 20 seconds on the reduced field:

Lucinda Brand opted to skip the first-ever Paris-Roubaix Femmes to focus on cyclo-cross last fall but she watched the race live on television as her teammate Deignan secured a history-making victory and was crowned the Queen of the Classics.

There were two key points she took away from watching that remarkable performance in which she believed would help in her as she lined up to race her first Paris-Roubaix this morning - "stay in front and don’t look back."

Sector 10 - Merignies à Avelin (0.7 km) ** - 42km to go

Sector 9 - Pont-Thibault à Ennevelin (1.4 km) *** - 39km to go

Balsamo has lost a lot of ground and is taking an opportunity to get a water bottle from the team car.

The gap to the breakaway has further dropped to 8 seconds and if they looked back over their shoulders they could see the field right behind.

Canyon-SRAM's Elise Chabbey counter attacks and tries to bridge across to Brand, Kopecky and Bastianelli.

Sector 8 - Templeuve - L'Epinette (0.2 km) * - 34km to go

Longo Borghini is off the cobbles and back onto the tarmac, stretching her lead out to 15 seconds.

The Italian Champion is in a time-trial-like position, pushing a big gear, and gaining time with every pedal stroke.

Breaking News

Sector 7 - Cysoing à Bourghelles (1.3 km) *** - 25km to go

The Italian finished third place last year and will know this final very well.

Sector 5 - Camphin-en-Pévèle (1.8 km) **** - 20km to go

Longo Borghini is flying over the cobbles, over-cooking a corner and briefly riding off the side into the dirt before saving herself, and carrying on her efforts to win the race.

Sector 4 - Carrefour de l'Arbre (2.1 km) ***** - 17km to go

The chase group now includes:

Sector 3 - Gruson (1.1 km) - 14km to go

Sector 3 - Gruson (km 109.9 - 1.1 km) ** - 14km to go

Sector 2 - Willems à Hem (1.4 km) *** - 8km to go

Behind, the chase group swells to include Van den Broek-Blaak (SD Worx), Elise Chabbey (Canyon-SRAM), and Floortje Mackaij (Team DSM) - along with Kopecky, Cavalli, Van Dijk and Brand.

The 

Longo Borghini might be channeling advice from her teammate Lizzie Deignan, who won last year, and who said before the race,

6km to go, and Longo Borghini is on the tarmac with just one last cobble sector remaining - Roubaix-Espace Charles Crupelandt - before entering the velodrome in Roubaix.

The chase group behind almost looks to have given up as they approach the final of the race. Van den Broek-Blaak is towing the group with Kopecky on her wheel. 

It also confirmed that World Champion Elisa Balsamo was disqualified from Paris-Roubaix Femmes for taking an illegal tow from her Trek-Segafredo team car as she chased back on after a puncture. Full story below.

Sector 1 - Roubaix-Espace Charles Crupelandt (0.3 km) * - 1.2km to go

She enters the velodrome and crosses the finish line, hearing the bell ringing, signifying one lap of the velodrome.

Elisa Longo Borghini is the winner of Paris-Roubaix Femmes 2022

The chase group enter the velodrome and a sprint for second place will take place.

Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) secures second place after winning the chase-group sprint ahead of Lucinda Brand (Trek-Segafredo) in third.

For a second year in a row, Trek-Segafreo secure 1st and 3rd at Paris-Roubaix.

Longo Borghini can hardly believe that she has won Paris-Roubaix. She is seated on the ground in the velodrome with her head in her hands.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Top 10
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo Women 3:10:54
2Lotte Kopecky (Bel) SD Worx 0:00:23
3Lucinda Brand (Ned) Trek-Segafredo Women
4Elise Chabbey (Swi) Canyon-Sram Racing
5Marta Cavalli (Ita) FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope
6Floortje Mackaij (Ned) Team DSM Women
7Ellen van Dijk (Ned) Trek-Segafredo Women
8Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (Ned) SD Worx 0:00:32
9Pfeiffer Georgi (GBr) Team DSM Women 0:02:22
10Sandra Alonso Dominguez (Spa) Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team

Elisa Longo Borghini

Paris-Roubaix Femmes 2022 - 2nd Edition - Denain - Roubaix 124,7 km - 16/04/2022 - Elisa Longo Borghini (ITA - Trek-Segafredo) Lotte Kopecky (BEL - Team SD Worx) Lucinda Brand (NED - Trek-Segafredo) - photo Rafa Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2022

(Image credit: Sprint Cycling Agency)

Read the full race report, results and gallery: Longo Borghini secures solo victory at Paris-Roubaix Femmes

Thank you for following our live coverage of Paris-Roubaix Femmes. Join us again for live coverage of La Flèche Wallonne Féminine on April 20 and Liège-Bastogne-Liège Femmes on April 24.

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