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The Italian powered clear of the peloton through sector 8 at Templeuve, and despite a valiant chase from several rivals, Longo Borghini hung on for a historic and well-deserved win. Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) won the sprint for second, with Lucinda Brand rounding out the podium for Trek-Segafredo with third.
“It’s been a very tough spring for me. I had sinusitis for a month, and I couldn’t really perform the way I wanted, and then I knew I was worth more than what I was performing, and it was also a little bit frustrating so it was a little bit of a hard time,” Borghini said. “And then [Trek-Segafredo] brought me to this race and I was like, ‘I don’t think I’m ready. I really don’t want to do it,’ and they kept saying you already you’re more than ready and we know you are capable of doing this so yeah, I have to say that they were right.”
The Trek-Segafredo leader was forced to fight for every second after her well-timed attack, with her lead at one point standing at just a handful of seconds, but she took a measured approach through the cobbled sectors and then built on her advantage at every opportunity when the surface eased.
Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) missed the attack from Longo Borghini but created several key moves. The Belgian rider was aggressive at almost every turn and set the pace behind the Trek-Segafredo rider for much of the chase, but with 10km to go, and the gap at 30 seconds, there was no way back for the pre-race favorite.
Longo Borghini entered the Roubaix velodrome alone to take victory and make it two wins from two for Trek-Segafredo after Lizzie Deignan won in 2021.
How it happened
The race began under blue skies and perfect sunshine – a complete contrast to last year’s mudfest that saw Deignan attack on the first sector of cobbles and dominate the race from that moment on.
This time around an early break formed with five riders, Leonie Bos (Parkhotel Valkenburg), Katie Clouse (Human Powered Health), Tanja Erath (Canyon-SRAM), Gaia Masetti (AG Insurance-NXTG), and Amalie Lutro (Uno-X Pro Cycling) forging clear in the opening kilometers. The quintet rode strongly and built up a two-minute lead over the peloton after 30km of action but with the first sector of cobbles approaching soon after, the fight for position at the front of the bunch dramatically reduced the break’s lead.
As soon as the bunch hit the first of cobbles at Hornaing to Wandignies, Trek-Segafredo took control. Ellen van Dijk (Trek-Segafredo) stormed to the front, discarding her hopes of winning by setting a blistering pace that not only cut the break’s lead in half but also splintered the peloton into several echelons.
Up front, only Erath, Masetti, and Lutro survived the onslaught as van Dijk repeated her efforts through the next two sectors to leave roughly 40 riders still in contention.
Control in a race such as Paris-Roubaix can be hard to gain but easy to lose and in the blink of an eye Trek’s dominance began to crumble with 70km to go.
First, van Dijk suffered a front wheel puncture just as a sector of cobbles began. Without support she was forced to navigate over the cobbles at half-speed, while SD Worx and Movistar began to turn the screw in an attempt to distance her. Soon after, another Trek rider, Chloe Hosking, hit the deck. It looked as though the American team’s hopes were in the balance. The situation became perilous when Elisa Balsamo was booted from the race for taking a sticky bottle.
Erath created a gap between hers and the remnants of the break but she too was caught just before sector 13.
Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (SD Worx) put the hammer down through the Orchies sector, but the pace eased just enough for van Dijk to return to the bunch.
Broek-Blaak’s pace-setting was the prequel for Kopecky’s first assault with 53km to go. Only Marta Bastianelli (UAE Team ADQ) could initially follow the Belgian champion but when Lucinda Brand (Trek-Segafredo) made it a trio up front it briefly looked as though the winning move had formed.
The leaders held a 17-second advantage through sector 10, but there was still enough firepower back in the bunch, as Movistar, Canyon-SRAM, and Jumbo-Visma set about orchestrating a chase.
The all-important catch was made with 34km to go, just as the front-runners hit sector 8. Longo Borghini carried both speed and momentum into the sector and blasted clear at the perfect moment. Her acceleration appeared to catch several pre-race favorites by surprise and only Emma Norsgaard and Elena Cecchini were able to mount a chase.
However, both riders were called back, a move that proved to be a slight tactical mistake, as the Italian leader extended her gap through sector 7.
Tide turns for Trek
With 30km to go the gap stood at 32 seconds, but there was still more to come from the main field as van den Broek-Blaak put in a series of accelerations to reduce the gap to fewer than 10 seconds. Longo Borghini looked to be within striking distance as a chase that included van den Broek-Blaak, Grace Brown (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope), Brand, and Chiara Consonni (Valcar Travel & Service) emerged after Kopecky was briefly gapped.
The presence of just one SD Worx rider in the chase appeared to hold back the momentum of those in the move, but with two huge sectors remaining at Camphin-en-Pévèle and Carrefour de l’Arbre, the race remained on a knife-edge.
Longo Borghini almost overcooked it on a corner, and rode into the grass on the left side of the road but remained upright, and after sailing through those key sectors, even managed to build on her lead before taking an incredible win.
“I need to thank first of all, my family, my boyfriend the supporters, and my mom, my dad and my nieces, because they are all the time keeping my morale really up. And secondly, I want to thank Trek-Segafredo because they still have faith in me even I don’t perform the way I was supposed to.
“Honestly, I wish I could bring all my teammates to the podium today because it was really a very good team performance, and I need to thank everybody, and also this is also a little bit for Elisa that was disqualified. But yeah, sometimes in the race, you just grab a sticky bottle, and yeah, the rule is the rule but they still feel a little bit sorry. And part of this race is also for Elisa Balsamo,” Borghini said.
Paris-Roubaix Femmes Results
|1||LONGO BORGHINI Elisa||Trek - Segafredo||3:10:54|
|2||KOPECKY Lotte||Team SD Worx||0:23|
|3||BRAND Lucinda||Trek - Segafredo||0:23|
|4||CHABBEY Elise||Canyon//SRAM Racing||0:23|
|5||CAVALLI Marta||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||0:23|
|6||MACKAIJ Floortje||Team DSM||0:23|
|7||VAN DIJK Ellen||Trek - Segafredo||0:23|
|8||VAN DEN BROEK-BLAAK Chantal||Team SD Worx||0:32|
|9||GEORGI Pfeiffer||Team DSM||2:22|
|10||ALONSO Sandra||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||2:22|
|11||NORSGAARD Emma||Movistar Team||2:22|
|12||BROWN Grace||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||2:22|
|13||JACKSON Alison||Liv Racing Xstra||2:54|
|14||BEEKHUIS Teuntje||Team Jumbo-Visma||2:54|
|15||BASTIANELLI Marta||UAE Team ADQ||2:54|
|16||CROMWELL Tiffany||Canyon//SRAM Racing||2:54|
|17||BERTEAU Victoire||Cofidis Women Team||2:54|
|18||MARKUS Femke||Parkhotel Valkenburg||2:54|
|19||KASPER Romy||Team Jumbo-Visma||2:54|
|20||CASTRIQUE Alana||Cofidis Women Team||2:56|
|21||DEMEY Valerie||Liv Racing Xstra||3:00|
|22||LACH Marta||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||4:02|
|23||PLUIMERS Ilse||AG Insurance - NXTG Team||4:08|
|24||LABECKI Coryn||Team Jumbo-Visma||4:35|
|25||CONSONNI Chiara||Valcar - Travel & Service||4:35|
|26||MAJERUS Christine||Team SD Worx||4:35|
|27||CORDON-RAGOT Audrey||Trek - Segafredo||4:35|
|28||LE NET Marie||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||4:35|
|29||HONSINGER Clara||EF Education-TIBCO-SVB||4:35|
|30||FOUQUENET Amandine||Arkéa Pro Cycling Team||4:35|
|31||MARKUS Riejanne||Team Jumbo-Visma||4:39|
|32||NORMAN LETH Julie||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||5:39|
|33||ERIĆ Jelena||Movistar Team||5:39|
|34||BARNES Alice||Canyon//SRAM Racing||5:39|
|35||GROSSETÊTE Maëlle||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||5:39|
|36||MORICHON Anais||Arkéa Pro Cycling Team||5:41|
|37||MARTINS Maria||Le Col - Wahoo||7:01|
|38||VAN DER HULST Amber||Liv Racing Xstra||7:03|
|39||JASTRAB Megan||Team DSM||8:53|
|40||GUARISCHI Barbara||Movistar Team||8:56|
|41||ROY Sarah||Canyon//SRAM Racing||8:56|
|42||CAMPBELL Teniel||Team BikeExchange - Jayco||8:57|
|43||ANDERSEN Susanne||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||8:57|
|44||BIANNIC Aude||Movistar Team||8:57|
|45||WIEBES Lorena||Team DSM||8:57|
|46||BOOGAARD Maaike||UAE Team ADQ||8:59|
|47||FOURNIER Roxane||Team SD Worx||9:01|
|48||BOSSUYT Shari||Canyon//SRAM Racing||9:16|
|49||WILLIAMS Lily||Human Powered Health||9:16|
|50||ALZINI Martina||Cofidis Women Team||9:16|
|51||DRONOVA-BALABOLINA Tamara||Roland Cogeas Edelweiss Squad||9:16|
|52||ROSEMAN-GANNON Ruby||Team BikeExchange - Jayco||9:16|
|53||RIJNBEEK Maud||AG Insurance - NXTG Team||9:16|
|54||SMITH Abi||EF Education-TIBCO-SVB||9:16|
|55||KUMIEGA Karolina||Valcar - Travel & Service||9:16|
|56||AHTOSALO Anniina||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||9:16|
|57||VAN 'T GELOOF Marjolein||Le Col - Wahoo||9:19|
|58||BREDEWOLD Mischa||Parkhotel Valkenburg||9:19|
|59||VERHULST Gladys||Le Col - Wahoo||9:19|
|60||KERBAOL Cédrine||Cofidis Women Team||9:19|
|61||BOILARD Simone||St Michel - Auber93 WE||9:19|
|63||BORGLI Stine||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||9:19|
|64||UIJEN Elise||Team DSM||9:19|
|65||POMPANON Margot||St Michel - Auber93 WE||9:19|
|66||BUJAK Eugenia||UAE Team ADQ||9:19|
|67||CLAUZEL Perrine||St Michel - Auber93 WE||9:19|
|68||MASETTI Gaia||AG Insurance - NXTG Team||9:19|
|69||JOUNIER Lucie||Arkéa Pro Cycling Team||9:19|
|70||FONSECA Barbara||St Michel - Auber93 WE||9:19|
|71||VIGIE Margaux||Valcar - Travel & Service||9:19|
|72||DUVAL Eugénie||FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope||9:19|
|73||VAN ALPHEN Aniek||Plantur-Pura||9:19|
|74||VALLIERES Magdeleine||EF Education-TIBCO-SVB||9:19|
|75||KRÖGER Mieke||Human Powered Health||9:26|
|76||HOSKING Chloe||Trek - Segafredo||9:28|
|77||KLEIN Lisa||Canyon//SRAM Racing||9:28|
|78||BRAUßE Franziska||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||9:28|
|79||TOMASI Laura||UAE Team ADQ||9:28|
|81||OYARBIDE Lourdes||Movistar Team||9:34|
|82||KUIJPERS Evy||Human Powered Health||9:42|
|83||BARNES Hannah||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||11:57|
|84||CONFALONIERI Maria Giulia||Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling||12:20|
|85||KOOL Charlotte||Team DSM||12:20|
|86||LUTRO Amalie||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||13:14|
|87||ERATH Tanja||EF Education-TIBCO-SVB||14:09|
|88||RAGUSA Katia||Liv Racing Xstra||14:09|
|89||AVOINE Alison||St Michel - Auber93 WE||14:11|
|90||CHRISTIE Henrietta||Human Powered Health||14:42|
|91||TACEY April||Le Col - Wahoo||14:42|
|92||GRANGIER India||Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime||14:42|
|93||JANSE VAN RENSBURG Frances||Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime||14:42|
|94||GAFINOVITZ Rotem||Roland Cogeas Edelweiss Squad||14:42|
|95||OTTESTAD Mie Bjørndal||Uno-X Pro Cycling Team||14:42|
|96||ABGRALL Noémie||Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime||14:46|
|97||NORBERT RIBEROLLE Marion||Plantur-Pura||14:46|
|98||UNEKEN Lonneke||Team SD Worx||14:48|
Results provided by ProCyclingStats.