There is nothing in sport that quite measures up to the chaos and carnage that is Paris-Roubaix. And outside of riding the race yourself, there's no better way to understand the madness then to go along for a virtual ride via this on-board race video courtesy of Velon CC. Hold on tight.
As for how the race went down, the day's triumph belonged to ORICA-GreenEDGE veteran Mathew Hayman, who was riding his 15th Paris-Roubaix. The 37-year old made all the right decisions in a race where more things can go wrong than right. The first decision was to jump into a break that formed after about 70 kilometers of racing. Hayman then stayed in the lead group all day establishing the foundation for his victory.
"I didn't have to surge to get in position before the cobbled sectors, I just had to make sure I saved as much energy as possible while being in the front group," Hayman said after the race. "Everybody that has ridden Paris-Roubaix knows it's one of those rare races where being in an early break can get a rider a good result."
Crashes - including one suffered by pre-race favorite Fabian Cancellara - shaped the day (click to enlarge).
When some of the big pre-race favorites caught up with the lead group, Hayman was in position to let the others work. "They knew I was in the breakaway during large parts of the race. I was able to just sit there and save energy," he added.
In a thrilling final, where all the riders in the lead group took their chances in attacks, Hayman proved to be the smartest, making his decisive move with less than two kilometers to go. Only pre-race favorite Tom Boonen was able to follow the Australian into the Roubaix Velodrome. On the last lap, however, the chasers closed the gap. When that happened, Hayman used the speed coming from up the banking to launch the sprint. Despite the efforts of passing him, not even the strong sprinting Tom Boonen had enough left in his tank to match Hayman's final surge.
Matthew Hayman jumps the line ahead of 4-time winner Tom Boonen and wins the 'Hell of the North' in style. Photo courtesy Scott Sports (click to enlarge).
"I had the feeling that everybody was pretty tired, so I decided to hit out and go for it," explained Hayman who is featured in this backstage pass video.
Hayman won Paris-Roubaix on a Scott Foil Team Issue. While the first edition of the Foil had a reputation of being super stiff yet not very comfortable, the engineers at Scott invested a lot of time in order to improve the comfort of the new Foil. The comfort values of the new Foil are now on a similar level as those of the Addict. Perhaps then it was the aerodynamic advantage of the Foil that might have tipped the scale during those final meters on the Roubaix cycling track.
Here's a full rundown of the winning bike.
The (dusty) winning bike of the 114th Paris-Roubaix 2016: The Scott Foil as ridden by Mathew Hayman. Photo courtesy Scott Sports (click to enlarge).
- Frameset: Scott Foil
- Stem: Integrated Scott Foil
- Handlebar: PRO alloy
- Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace direct-mount
- Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace direct-mount
- Brake levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 STI Dual Control ST-9070
- Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 FD-9070
- Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 RD-9070
- Shift levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 9070 + SW-R610 sprint shifters (on drops)
- Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace CS-9000, 11-25T
- Chain: Shimano Dura-Ace CN-9000
- Crankset: SRM Shimano 11-speed, 53/44T
- Pedals: Shimano 9000 Dura-Ace
- Wheelset: Shimano C-50tubular
- Tubulars: Continental Competition Pro LTD, 28mm
- Saddle: Fizik Antares
- Seatpost: Ritchey Foil
- Computer: SRM Power Control 8