Cancellara storms to Paris-Roubaix win

Eurosport - Sun, 11 Apr 16:29:00 2010

Switzerland's Fabian Cancellara stormed to victory in Paris-Roubaix to become just the 10th man in history to win both of the cobbled classics in the same year.

CYCLING 2010 Paris-Roubaix Fabian Cancellara - 0

The 29-year-old followed up his victory in last Sunday's Tour of Flanders with an emphatic winning margin of two minutes over Norwegian Thor Hushovd (Cervelo) who beat Spain's Juan Antonio Flecha of Team Sky in the sprint for second place in the Roubaix velodrome.

The Olympic and world time trial champion attacked on the flat roads on the approach to the 18th of the 27 cobbled sections, Mons-en-Pévèle.

The Saxo Bank rider bridged the gap to the leading trio of Sébastien Hinault, Leif Hoste and Björn Leukemans before dropping them in quick succession and time trialing the 45km to the finish.

As he did seven days before, Cancellara waved a tiny gold angel to the television cameras as he claimed a famous victory in the 108th edition of Paris-Roubaix, four years after his first success in one of the 'Monuments' of the cycling calendar.

"I launched an attack in a quiet moment of the race where the riders in the group were trying to recover from earlier attacks. When I noticed that no one was able to follow, I kept my head down and the legs going to the finish line," Cancellara said.

"I know it's a historic victory as I took 'the double' which only very few riders have done before me and this title has been my biggest motivation throughout the week."

Two-time defending champion Tom Boonen led an eight-man chase group but they never looked like getting on terms with the Swiss who secured the fourth major Classic win of his career.

Belgian national champion Boonen, one minute 15 seconds behind Cancellara when finishing second in Flanders, had to settle for fifth after being outsprinted by Britain's Roger Hammond.

A 19-man escape group, featuring Britain's Jeremy Hunt, formed around two hours into the 259km trek from Compiègne and they opened up a four-minute lead.

The main group was gradually whittled down as they crossed the 52km of pave on this year's route although dry conditions meant the pivotal Arenberg forest section of cobbles failed to produce the decisive selection that it often has in previous years in the race known as the 'Hell of the North'.

The final escapees were caught with 60km remaining before Cancellara produced a scintillating solo performance, opening up a lead of over three minutes at one point, as he followed his fellow Swiss Henri Suter to become just the second non-Belgian to complete the double.

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Lee Walker / Eurosport

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