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Paris - Roubaix - Road race - Men

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  1. 17:00 - Thanks for joining us today for what was an utterly scintillating race - perhaps even better than last week's Tour of Flanders.

  2. 0km - Result: 1. Terpstra, 2. Degenkolb, 3. Cancellara, 4. Vanmarcke, 5. Stybar, 6. Sagan, 7. Thomas, 8. Langeveld, 9. Wiggins, 10, Boonen.

  3. 0km - Geraint Thomas took seventh in the sprint and Wiggins took ninth.

  4. 0km - John Degenkolb punches the air to take second place ahead of Fabian Cancellara. They finished 20 seconds down.

  5. 0km - The host broadcaster failed to show the final spring for the remaining podium positions! Terrible stuff there - they were following the third group to the line!

  6. 0km - Victory in Paris-Roubaix for Niki Terpstra of Omega Pharma-Quick Step!

  7. 0.5km - The bell rings!

  8. 1km - Terpstra makes the turn into the velodrome and he'll be able to parade himself to victory!

  9. 1.5km - Unless he picks up a flat, this is his. What a ride from Terpstra.

  10. 2km - Terpstra approaching the final cobbled section, just 300m outside the velodrome. It's his to lose now.

  11. 2.5km - It's a race for second place now... 18 seconds now the gap.

  12. 3km - They are all cooked. None of the chasers has an answer. Sagan looks like he's about to wilt and fall to the side of the road.

  13. 3.5km - Terpstra's face is a picture of pain as he gasps for air. He has 15 seconds. Finally, a success for Omega Pharma-Quick Step!

  14. 4km - It's now back up to 14 seconds. They have given up!

  15. 4.5km - Eight seconds now for Terpstra. It's now a pursuit. This is very exciting.

  16. 5km - Tepstra has 11 seconds and they're hesitating behind. He can do this.

  17. 5.5km - All or nothing for Terpstra. Quick Step had to do that - with the numerical advantage it would have been offensive had they not.

  18. 6km - ATTACK: Niki Terpstra pings off the front!

  19. 6.5km - De Backer is burying himself for team-mate Degenkolb. Just the one more cobbled section before the velodrome...

  20. 7km - Wiggins, Thomas, De Backer, Degenkolb, Boonen, Terpstra, Stybar, Cancellara, Vanmarcke, Langerveld and Sagan... one of these will win. The chasing group is at 22 seconds.

  21. 7.5km - Two from Sky, two from Giant, three from Omega Pharma, one Trek, one Belkin, one Garmin, one Cannondale.

  22. 8km - We're onto the penultimate section of cobbles: the 2-star Hem, which is just 1.4km long.

  23. 8.5km - The junction is made! We now have 11 riders, with Wiggins pulling on the front. This is quite amazing.

  24. 9km - Just eight seconds now!

  25. 10km - Quickest rider on paper? Degenkolb. But he's never done it before at Roubaix. Cancellara has been there, done that, and last week showed his sprinting credentials. Sagan looks cooked. Vanmarcke?

  26. 10.5km - Just two more cobbled sections, but they're not biggies. This is fascinating. 16 seconds still the gap for the five leaders.

  27. 11.5km - Bert De Backer of Giant-Shimano and a Garmin rider - Langerveld - are with the Wiggins chasing group. Still 15 seconds.

  28. 12km - Sagan refuses to do any work, understandably. These five riders have 15 seconds on the chasing Wiggins-Boonen group.

  29. 13km - Degenkolb missed two bottles of water in succession and shakes his head. The chasing group has pedigree though - Boonen, Terpstra, Thomas, Wiggins and two others.

  30. 14km - Cancellara leads the race with Vanmarcke, Stybar and Degenkolb. Sagan is now back, so we have five ahead. They have been through the Gruson section too, the 2-star 1.1km section.

  31. 14.5km - Sagan is struggling to keep up with the leaders.

  32. 15km - Sagan is caught. This is a very select group: Vanmarcke, Cancellara, Degenkolb and Stybar. Terpstra is in prsuit with Thomas. Wiggins not far behind.

  33. 16km - Sagan is on the dirty track, as are his chasers. Thomas is back with the Cancellara group. Wiggins is not far behind.

  34. 17km - It's the third and final 5-star section of cobbles: the Le Carrefour de l’Arbre (2.1km). Sagan hits a pothole but somehow manages to stay up.

  35. 17.5km - It's Stybar and Degenkolb with Vanmarcke and Cancellara. They will catch Sagan soon.

  36. 18km - Only two riders can keep up with Cancellara and Vanmarcke. Sagan pops a gel. His lead is slender.

  37. 18.8km - ATTACK: Vanmarcke surges forward. Cancellara reacts, then Lars Boom hits the deck on a tight right-hander.

  38. 19km - Sagan has 15 seconds on the pack.

  39. 20km - Sagan onto the 5th section, the 1.8km Camphin-en-Pévèle (4-star). The chasing group is about to be caught by the main pack. Belkin drive the pace. Cancellara is on the wheel of Vanmarcke. Neither has punctured today, but the Swiss did go down in that crash involving his team-mate Roulston.

  40. 21.5km - ATTACK: Sagan throws the dice with an uphill dig. He distances the leaders and now rides solo towards the finish. Meanwhile, back with the pack, Van Avermaet and Schar are back.

  41. 22km - Belkin have both Tankink and Wynants in this leading group, which still has about 8 seconds over the Cancellara main group. Wiggins and Eisel are still there for Sky.

  42. 23km - CRASH: BMC's Greg Van Avermaet hits the deck on the right right-hander. Michael Schar, his team-mate, stops to help him back on his feet. That came after Cancellara upped the tempo considerably.

  43. 24km - Sagan and Wynants join the leaders just ahead of the next cobbled section, the 3-star Bourghelles – Wannehain section, which is 6 part B.

  44. 25km - Geraint Thomas squeezes a gel down his trap. It's going to all go back together soon, although Hushovd is now driving a fierce pace.

  45. 25.5km - Just 10 seconds now for the leaders as Boonen akes up the pace.

  46. 27km - Hushovd back on the front in the 1.3km sixth sector of Cysoing – Bourghelles (4-star rating). The gap is 20 seconds with Sagan and Wynants about to be caught.

  47. 28km - The main pack is about 25-strong now, slashing the advantage of the leading Boonen group to 25 seconds. Sagan and Wynants may catch the six soon, although Sagan is clearly aggrieved at the sandbagging antics of his companion in green.

  48. 29km - Boonen is still waving his arms around in disgust, Thor Hushovd the object of his annoyance this time. They have 20 seconds on the Sagan-Wynants duo and 30 seconds on the main pack.

  49. 30km - Borut Bozic is on the back of the small main group, but he's smashing his handlebars - clearly unhappy with something. A quick bike change and he's now fighting back on.

  50. 32km - The Belkin rider with Sagan is Maarten Wynants. Trek lead the chase but it's all so close and extremely well poised for an exciting finale. Sagan is 18 seconds back on the leaders, with the peloton another 20 seconds back.

  51. 33km - Boonen is irate and takes it out on Thomas. The gap is 21 seconds as Peter Sagan manages to bunny hop back onto the road after taking a bend too acutely.

  52. 34km - Thomas now tries to lead the chase on Boonen. The Welshman manages to close the gap and brings it back together as they enter sector 7, the 2-star Templeuve – Moulin de Vertain, the second shortest at 500m.

  53. 35km - Boonen is trying to ride clear of his fellow escapees - and he's opened up a small gap on the tarmac. Meanwhile, Sagan rides with the Belkin man and an Astana rider in pursuit. Sagan is shaking his head, clearly unhappy with something. Behind, the pack has regrouped.

  54. 36km - ATTACK! Just as the Cancellara group calms down, Sagan rides back on to his rival's wheel and them bursts clear, taking a Belkin man with him.

  55. 36.5km - The six leaders have 25 seconds now as they pass through another feedzone.

  56. 37.5km - After a brief hesitation, Cancellara counters the attack by Vanmarcke. Despite riding with Belkin's Lars Boom as an anchor, he manages to power past the others and join the man he beat to the line in last year's race.

  57. 38km - ATTACK: Sep Vanmarcke launches at the start of the cobbled section.

  58. 39km - Reminder of those leading six riders: Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma-Quick Step), Geraint Thomas (Sky), Thor Hushovd (BMC), Yannick Martinez (Europcar), Bert De Backer (Giant-Shimano) and Bram Tankink (Belkin). They're onto the 8th sector, the 1.4km Pont-Thibaut, which has a three star rating.

  59. 40km - No one looks prepared to fully take the lead in the chasing pack. Trek, Belkin and Cannondale are there - but they're not combining well.

  60. 42km - Trek have now taken up the chase for Fabian Cancellara. Wiggins and Sagan are there too. But the gap is now 42 seconds. They just passed through the short 700m 9th sector, the 2-star Mérignies – Avelin.

  61. 45km - The gap is growing, but still Boonen urges his fellow escapees to pick it up. They all take on a gel after the Mons-en-Pevele section. The gap is now 35 seconds. This is poised wonderfully.

  62. 46km - Damien Gaudin is now on the back of the peloton after bring caught, taking a well-earned breather alongside Cancellara. Hushovd, in the Norwegian national champion's jersey, grimaces as he sets the pace ahead of Boonen, De Backer, Thomas, Tankink and Martinez. 25 seconds now. Belkin and Cannondale lead the chase.

  63. 47km - Some lunatic with a French flag waves it in front of Boonen, much to the Belgian's annoyance. He looks back in disgust before powering on. Martinez, of Europcar, is holding in. The lead has creapt up to 20 seconds.

  64. 48km - It's the second of three 5-star sections, number 10, the Mons-en-Pévèle, which is 3km long. There's been a big thinning down, with a chasing peloton of around 40 riders.

  65. 49km - De Backer, Martinez and Tankink have joined Boonen, Hushovd and Thomas. They looked to be dooned, but the peloton eased up. The gap is 15 seconds. Wiggins is now towards the back of the peloton, while Cancellara is in the centre.

  66. 50km - It's virtually back together - but the pack is split into numerous streaks. Hushovd drives the pace with Boonen and Thomas in tow.

  67. 51km - It looks like Boonen has given up as Hushovd joins the leading group. They only have eight seconds and they all sit up on exiting the cobbled sector.

  68. 52km - Thos Hushovd rides off the front of the pack in pursuit of the leaders, who are down to four riders: Boonen, Thomas, De Backer and Martinez.

  69. 53km - Boonen ups the pace just after taking over from a Gaudin turn on the front. The Belgian powerhouse is laying on the pain for the others, but they wil all be caught by the pacl soon, despite Thomas's half-hearted efforts (the Sky man has team-mates in reserve).

  70. 54km - We onto the 4-star 11th section of Auchy-lez-Orchies – Bersée (2.7km). Boonen is riding on the grass to the right of the cobbles.

  71. 55km - Team Sky's Wiggins, Boasson Hagen and Eisel are still very much in contention, just behind BMC. The Boonen group only has 11 seconds to play with. Other riders are De Backer, Ladagnous and Martinez.

  72. 56km - It looks like Boonen is sacrificing himself for his team here. If he continues with this futile break he'll knacker himself before the business end of the race.

  73. 57km - BMC have six riders leading the chase here, with Sky and Belkin tucked behind. We've had no sighting of Cancellara for quite a while. Trek's race has gone out the window since that Roulston spill.

  74. 58km - We have riders from Giant, Europcar and FDJ here with Boonen, Thomas and Gaudin. Boonen is angry at the slack work ethic.

  75. 58.5km - The Boonen group have shed the deadwood and ride with 20 seconds over the peloton. It's extremely dusty.

  76. 59km - Sector 12: Orchies (1.7km, 3-star). Boonen, Gaudin and Thomas set the pace for the leading group, with BMC still manning the chase.

  77. 60km - In this leading group of 10 riders is Geraint Thomas and Damian Gaudin. Other names coming up. BMC lead the chase - they have missed out. Meanwhile, Boonen urges his fellow escapees to work harder, but it's to no avail - the peloton are closing in.

  78. 61km - The likes of Cancellara, Wiggins and Sagan are all in the peloton as the Boonen chasing group catches the three leaders.

  79. 62km - Boonen has joined that chasing group as a bit of panic spreads behind in the peloton.

  80. 63km - CRASH: Luca Paolini and Ramon Sinkeldam hit the deck, while a Cofidis rider falls headlong into a ditch.

  81. 64km - BOONEN ATTACKS! The big Belgian powers clear of the peloton and uses a OPQS team-mate to block the others.

  82. 65km - Schillinger, Jarrier and De Troyer - the three leaders - now have just 55 seconds on the chasing group as they enter section 13 at Beuvry-la-Forêt – Orchies (1.3km at 3-star).

  83. 66km - Geraint Thomas in a small group off the front now for Team Sky.

  84. 66.5km - Another bike change for Peter Sagan on a wide stretch of tarmac. Ag2R and Europcar have taken up the pace on the front entering the second feed zone.

  85. 67km - Boasson Hagen counters an attack from Ag2R. Nervous stuff in France.

  86. 68km - FDJ's Arnaud Demare has another punture and his race will effectively be over. He's riding on a flat until he can find a new wheel.

  87. 69km - CRASH: One of the Sky riders hits the deck at speed on the tight left-hander. Almost landed in a pile of horse manure.

  88. 70km - It's back as one for the peloton, who have caught FDJ's Boucher, who was held up by that train earlier.

  89. 71km - The break enters the 14th sector, the 4-star Tilloy – Sars-et-Rosières. They have 1:50 over a small chasing group that's formed around Hushovd. Wiggins has punctured and in trouble off the back.

  90. 72km - Hushovd counters an attack from an IAM rider on the Warlaing – Brillon 15th sector (3-star at 2.4km).

  91. 74km - The Hushovd chasing group has been neutralised and so we may have a spot of calm now as all the favourites assess who's who.

  92. 75km - Now Thor Hushovd drives the pace for BMC in an eight-man chasing group ahead of the peloton, which is back together but still strung out. No riders from OPQS, Cannondale or Sky here.

  93. 76km - It's the 4-star Hornaing sector now with most riders choosing the gutter rather than the cobbles. It's a long 3.7km stretch. A regrouping is underway as some of the initial escapees are caught, including Dehaes.

  94. 77km - The peloton has split into numerous groups now, with Tom Boonen and one of his OPQS team-mates driving the pace. There's a group of around a dozen riders with Boonen - including Van Avermaet and Hayman. A Belkin rider too - will be interesting to see if that's Vanmarcke.

  95. 78km - Geraint Thomas needs some mechanical assistance - he was caught up in the crash for Sky.

  96. 79km - Alex Kristoff was one of the riders who hit the deck after Roulston's bunny-hop fail there - just after the Norwegian had rejoined the peloton following his Arenberg flat.

  97. 80km - Meanwhile, the four leaders are onto the 3-star Wallers - Hélesmes, aka “Pont Gibus” - section. They have four minutes over the pack, which is in disarry following the Arenberg and the subsequent crash.

  98. 82km - CRASH! CANCELLARA DOWN! It's a complete comedy of errors as the favourite's team-mate Hayden Roulston clips the curb and takes out Spartacus and half a dozen others.

  99. 83km - Just four leaders now following a combination of punctures, cobbles and inopportune train crossings. They are Andreas Schillinger (NetApp), Benoit Jarrier (Bretagne), Tim de Troyer (Wanty) and John Murphy (UnitedHealthcare).

  100. 84km - CRASH: three riders hit the deck on the cobbled corner, including a Europcar rider, who looks the worst off.

  101. 85km - Poor David Boucher - the FDJ rider, who is fighting back to join the leaders, has to stop and wait for a passing train. "Putain de merde!" he shouts.

  102. 87km - The sun is out in northern France - but try telling that to Alex Kristoff, who's still struggling back to the peloton. Meanwhile, his Katusha team-mate Luca Paolini is on the front of the pack trying to calm the pace down, understandably. He'll shave his beard if he finishes in the top five, apparently.

  103. 89km - Alexander Kristoff picked up a puncture during the Arenberg and he is one of the big-name casualties in this first 5-star sections. He'll have to fight back now.

  104. 90km - Hayden Roulston - correction Gregory Rast - stands in a muddy verge and throws his bike to the ground. He clearly has an issue but will near to wait until his Trek car comes.

  105. 91km - John Degenkolb is riding near the front. Jan Barta has hit the deck for NetApp. Sky still have some men on the front, Eisel in particular.

  106. 93km - It's a massive fight as the peloton hit the Arenberg Forest - the gateways of Hell.

  107. 94km - Punctures galore - one of the Bretagne riders, plus Dehaes for Lotto. Kolar is struggling while Schillinger is riding out ahead.

  108. 95km - ARENBERG FOREST: It's the 5-star 18th sector, which lasts for 2400m. This is the Dutch Corner of Paris-Roubaix.

  109. 96km - Boucher picks up a puncture. Better now than in the Arenberg - but he'll have to fight on.

  110. 97km - The leaders are approaching the Arenberg Forest with a lead of 4:45. They are: David Boucher (FDJ), Kenny de Haes (Lotto Belisol), Andreas Schillinger (NetApp-Endura), Michael Kolar (Tinkoff-Saxo), Clement Koretzky and Benoit Jarrier (both Bretagne-Seche Environnement), Tim De Troyer (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) and John Murphy (UnitedHealthCare).

  111. 98km - Boasson Hagen, Wiggins, Eisel and Thomas are all there for Sky. Riding here means they don't have to inhale all that dust.

  112. 100km - Now Sky come to the front, with four men leading the peloton onto the Haveluy section. Sagan is back and now it's business. Wiggins is one of those riders. This is interesting.

  113. 102km - The escapees are on sector 19 at Haveluy (2.5km, 4-star).

  114. 103km - Puncture for Peter Sagan! Terrible timing for the Slovak sensation. He has some Cannondale team-mates with him, but his rivals might smell blood. He's struggling with his gears and chain following that rear wheel change.

  115. 105km - Van Avermaet wasn't involved in that crash but he was caught up in the aftermath. There's a second peloton fighting back on now, while the eight leaders now have 5:50.

  116. 106km - CRASH: A number of riders hit the deck going into a rail tunnel. It looks like three were some blue bars on the side of the road separating the road from the pavement and some of the pack rode right into them. They should have been marked, those barriers...

  117. 108km - Mechanical for Greg van Avermaet, who is being paced back on by two BMC team-mates. Runner-up last weekend in Flanders, can the perennial bridesmaid finally get a monumental win today?

  118. 110km - Six minutes for the leaders. All the arm warmers have come off now with the exception of Michal Kolar of Tinkoff-Saxo.

  119. 112km - Wiggins is still sticking to the back of the pack and keeping out of trouble. He won't be able to stay there for much longer - if he's not near the front in the Arenberg then he won't stand a chance. Trek and Garmin set the pace with a spattering of OPQS riders.

  120. 116km - The leaders are onto sector 20: Monchaux-sur-Ecaillon (1.6km, 3-star). Kenny Dehaes takes the lead, driving along the centre of the road. The jostling for positions ahead of the Arenberg Forest will soon begin in earnest on the front of the pack.

  121. 119km - Arnaud Demare was one of the riders caught up in that earlier spill - apparently just as he got back into the peloton. Nothing serious, mind. Not long until the Arenberg Forest - just 23km to be precise.

  122. 120km - The leaders are onto sector 21: Quérénaing – Famars (1.2km and 2-star). Still no rain and the cobbled roads are extremely dusty.

  123. 124km - Boucher is back with the leaders, with the gap currently 6:40 over the peloton.

  124. 125km - FDJ's David Boucher edges ahead of his fellow escapees in sector 22, the 3-star Verchain – Maugré (1.6km).

  125. 126km - Belkin, Trek and Omega Pharma set the pace on the front of the pack as they pass a field of bright yellow oilseed rape.

  126. 127km - CRASH: Four riders come to a standstill on the back of the pack as they enter the Saulzoir section. No one comes down on the cobbles, but a couple of them roll over into the crash verge.

  127. 129km - Bradley Wiggins currently taking things easy on th eback of the peloton for Team Sky. He's the first Tour winner since Greg LeMond in 1995 to ride Roubaix. His best finish here was in 2009, when he rode for Garmin and took 25th place.

  128. 131km - Sector 23 at Saulzoir for the leaders - 1.2km and 2-star. They have 6:15 on the pack.

  129. 133km - Jimmy Engoulvent stops to change bikes with a Europcar team-mate in the Solesmes sector. He must have got a flat.

  130. 134km - Benoit Jarrier, one of the eight escapees, has just taken his helmet off and is busy cleaning something off the top of his head with a disgusted look on his face. Perhaps he's just been pooed on by a bird?

  131. 136km - Rear wheel change for FDJ's Arnaud Demare in the feed zone. The French youngster is an interesting outside bet today.

  132. 138km - The leaders are onto the fifth cobbled sector, the 2-star Solesmes (just 800m). They have 6:45 ovr the pack.

  133. 140km - The gap is back up to seven minutes for the eight leaders as Boonen gets back in touch with the peloton.

  134. 142km - With Boonen off the back following that puncture, the Trek team of Fabian Cancellara are driving the pace on the front of the pack.

  135. 144km - Tom Boonen, the four-time winner, has picked up a puncture in the Saint-Python section. That's something that doesn't happen often - in fact, it's the first time it's ever happened to Boonen. To win Roubaix, you need luck, strength and skill. If you do puncture, you want to do it here, not later.

  136. 145km - Approaching the 2-star Saint-Python (1.5km) section and the lead is tumbling pretty rapidly. The escapees now have just five minutes to play with.

  137. 150km - And now the 3.7km Quievy sector (4-star). It's very dusty on these bone-jangling roads. The lead is down to 7:30 for the eight escapees.

  138. 153km - The leaders are onto the second cobbled sector, the 3-star 1.8km Veisley.

  139. 156km - A fast average speed of 46kmph so far in this race. The eight leaders pass through Troisvilles without too much ado. They are: David Boucher (FDJ), Kenny de Haes (Lotto Belisol), Andreas Schillinger (NetApp-Endura), Michael Kolar (Tinkoff-Saxo), Clement Koretzky and Benoit Jarrier (both Bretagne-Seche Environnement), Tim De Troyer (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) and John Murphy (UnitedHealthCare).

  140. 157km - Weather update: the wind is kicking up, with strong cross and tailwinds. The clouds are gathering too, which means we could be in line for some afternoon showers.

  141. 158.5km - LET THE COBBLES COMMENCE: The eight leaders jangle onto the first sector of pave, a 3-star 2.2km section at Troisvilles.

  142. 160km - The lead of the eight escapees is 8:35 as they approach the first of 28 cobbled sectors, the 3-star Troisville a Inchy (2.2km long).

  143. 165km - We're approaching that first sector of cobbles as OPQS (Boonen), Belkin (Vanmarcke), Katusha (Kristoff) and Trek (Spartacus) come to the front.

  144. 170km - Another Quick Step rider to watch is the imposing Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, who won the Three Days of Depanne a fortnight ago. He's only 23 but his physical presence is enormous. Put him and Vandenbergh on the front of the peloton and they can act like a couple of burly nightclub doormen.

  145. 175km - The Arenberg Forest is where things usually really hot up. That comes with 104km remaining and is usually where the first big selection is made. Crash or puncture there and it's a real struggle to get back in contention.

  146. 180km - Who else should we look out for today? Flanders runner-up Greg van Avermaet (BMC) is due a major win, while Orica-GreenEdge's Mathew Hayman is a tough cookie. Filippo Pozzato (Lampre) is probably past it but John Degenkolb (Giant-Shimano) is a rising star. We can probably discount the Spaniards, to be fair, but Borut Bozic (Astana) looked solid until a flat last weekend. How about Wanty's Mirko Selvaggi for a huge outside bet on the podium?

  147. 185km - NEWSFLASH: Vuelta a Espana winner Chris Horner is a major doubt for the Giro d'Italia following his crash on Friday. The Lampre Merida veteran was hit by a car in training near Lake Como and suffered a punctured lung, four broken ribs and head wounds. The American is in hospital in Lecco.

  148. 190km - Not long to go until those cobbles. There are 28 sections this year with a total of 51km of cobbles. They all have a star rating with three sections gifted 5-star status: the famous Arenberg trench (after 161km), Mons-en-Pevele (at 208km) and the Carrefour de l'Arbre (240km).

  149. 195km - Wiggins was typical Wiggins in an interview with reporters this week: "If you could just drop out of a helicopter with 40k to go on Cancellara's wheel and then see if you could hold it when he goes, that's an ideal scenario. But there's 220k before that of little French guys coming underneath you, chopping you, calling you a w and all this. That's the reality of it."

  150. 200km - Another huge engine to watch is American youngster Taylor Phinney. The BMC rider put in some cobble kilometres off the front of Flanders last weekend, and told media this week that should he win Roubaix, he'll affix his cobble trophy on the front of a Rolls Royce. Talk about cycling bling...

  151. 205km - The peloton has drasticaly taken its foot off the gas in this opening section ahead of the cobbles. The gap of the leaders has now ballooned to a massive nine minutes after just over 50km of racing.

  152. 210km - Bradley Wiggins is the first Tour de France winner to ride Paris-Roubaix since the American Greg LeMond in 1995. LeMond was fourth that year, and ninth three years earlier in 1992. Asked about Wiggins' participation, LeMond told Cyclingnews: "I just love that he is doing it. I think if the is doing it he obviously feels he has the legs to do it and he is a great racer and might have something to prove."

  153. 215km - The eight escapees now have 2:20 over the peloton as they continue their trek towards the first of 28 cobbled sectors in this third monument of the season.

  154. 220km - One rider we shouldn't forget is Milan-San Remo winner Alexander Kristoff of Katusha. The Norwegian is in superb form and is one tough nut.

  155. 225km - As well as dark horse Wiggins, Team Sky also have Edvald Boasson Hagen, Bernard Eisel and Geraint Thomas, not to mention Gabriel Rasch, who rides his final race for the British team before retirement.

  156. 230km - ATTACK: Eight riders have pinged off the front. They are David Boucher (FDJ), Kenny de Haes (Lotto Belisol), Andreas Schillinger (NetApp-Endura), Michael Kolar (Tinkoff-Saxo), Clement Koretzky, Benoit Jarrier (both Bretagne-Séché Environnement), Tim De Troyer (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) and John Murphy (UnitedHealthCare).

  157. 235km - Johan Vansummeren, the 2011 winner, starts today despite that horrific collision last Sunday with a spectator. If Boonen doesn't do the business for Omega Pharma-Quick Step, then the Belgian team have a wealth of secondary options in Zdenek Stybar, Niki Terpstra and Stijn Vandenbergh, two of whom collides with fans towards the finale of last year's race.

  158. 240km - Other favourites to look out for today are Sep Vanmarcke, the young Belkin rider who finished behind Cancellara last year in the Roubaix velodrome, and, perhaps, Bradley Wiggins, the 2012 Tour de France winner, who is taking this race very seriously.

  159. 245km - ATTACK: A handful of riders ping off the front. But the peloton neutralises the threat.

  160. 250km - The riders face the best part of 100km (97.5km to be exact) before they face the first of 28 cobbled sectors at Troisvilles a Inchy.

  161. 255km - It's chilly in northern France with the temperature still in single figures.

  162. 257km - They're off! The 199-strong peloton rolls out of the main town square in Compeigne to get the show on the road. One of them has already dropped a water bottle, which probably fell out of its cage thanks to the bumpy cobbles.

  163. 10:10 - After his victory in the Tour of Flanders last week, Fabian Cancellara is the hot favourite. Should the Swiss win, he'll become the first man in history to nail three Flanders-Roubaix doubles. But Tom Boonen will look to become the first man in history to win five Roubaix titles, while Peter Sagan still looks for that elusive monument win.

  164. 10:05 - It was cloudy this morning as the riders signed on at Compeigne. There's a slight chance of some rain but the most likely scenario is a dry race, which means as much dust as the Strade Bianche. Bring it on!

  165. 10:00 - Welcome to live coverage of the 112th edition of Paris-Roubaix - the 'Hell of the North' - the third monument of the spring classic season, a brutish schlep across the cobbles of northern France.

 

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