2019 Paris-Roubaix Preview: Route, Sectors and the Favorites

This Sunday's classic features 29 secteurs of pave over 159 miles as Peter Sagan returns as defending champion

2019 Paris-Roubaix Preview: Route, Sectors and the Favorites

Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) returns to defend his 2018 Paris-Roubaix win where he outsprinted Silvain Dillier (AG2R La Mondiale), who had managed to follow the 3 times world champion from the day's original break. Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step Floors) rolled in alone to complete the podium.

Sagan made his winning move 33 miles (53km) before the finish, gambling by dropping most of the day's favourites, who then hesitated.

He caught and passed what was left of the breakaway, and  only Dillier could hang on, Sagan unsurprisingly outsprinted Dillier on the line to take one of his momentous wins of his career.

The race features 55 km of cobbles, that will break the mettle of the hardest riders minds and machines. Just finishing, is a trophy to wear with pride.

To win, requires the stamina of an Pronghorn Antelope, the mental strength of a U.S. Special Forces operative and the luck of a Los Vegas high roller. The winner will be forever remembered on the hollowed boards at the André-Pétrieux Vélodrome.

Paris-Roubaix was inaugurated in 1896, making it one of the oldest bike races in the world. Born of a familiar story involving entrepreneurial types, newspapers, and money-making schemes, in time the race has come to adopt monikers like the 'Queen of the Classics' and 'Hell of the North', and remains one of the most prestigious victories to take in pro bike racing.

The famous Arenberg Trench is tackled almost 100km from the finishing line, it often causes many problems for the peloton splintering the bunch into smaller groups, there is typically a mad dash to be at the front ahead of this important sector. 

The Cobbled Secteurs

The shortening of the Troisvilles sector to its first 900 metres is the major change to the course for this year, while several other cobbled sectors in the first part of the race have also been altered. From this point on, when the peloton rolls into the area of Valenciennes (sector 23), the course is exactly the same as in 2018. The total distance remains the same, even though the length of the Trouée d'Arenberg was revised to 2,300 metres based on more accurate measurements. 

The famous Arenberg Trench is tackled almost 100km from the finishing line, it often causes many problems for the peloton splintering the bunch into smaller groups, there is typically a mad dash to be at the front ahead of this important sector. 

2019 Paris-Roubaix Cobbled Secteurs

Sector Kilometres Name Length (km)
29 93.5 Troisvilles to Inchy 2.2
28 100 Briastre 3
27 109 Saint-Python 1.5
26 111.5 Quiévy 3.7
25 119 Saint-Vaast 1.5
24 130 Verchain-Maugré 1.2
23 134.5 Quérénaing 1.6
22 137.5 Quérénaing to Maing 2.5
21 140.5 Maing to Monchaux-sur-Écaillon 1.6
20 153.5 Haveluy to Wallers 2.5
19 161.5 Trouée d'Arenberg 2.4
18 168 Wallers to Hélesmes 1.6
17 174.5 Hornaing to Wandignies 3.7
16 182 Warlaing to Brillon 2.4
15 185.5 Tilloy to Sars-et-Rosières 2.4
14 192 Beuvry-la-Forêt to Orchies 1.4
13 197 Orchies 1.7
12 203 Auchy-lez-Orchies to Bersée 2.7
11 208.5 Mons-en-Pévèle 3
10 214.5 Mérignies to Avelin 0.7
9 218 Pont-Thibaut to Ennevelin 1.4
8 224 Templeuve (Moulin-de-Vertain) 0.5
7 230.5 Cysoing to Bourghelles 1.3
6 233 Bourghelles to Wannehain 1.1
5 237.5 Camphin-en-Pévèle 1.8
4 240 Carrefour de l’Arbre 2.1
3 242.5 Gruson 1.1
2 249 Willems to Hem 1.4
1 256 Roubaix (Espace Crupelandt) 0.3
Total 55 km

The Favorites

Peter Sagan: Following a bout of illness, the three-time world champion has been riding back into form finishing strongly at Flanders, after outsider Alberto Bettiol stole victory from all the favorites who were too busy marking each other.

John Degenkolb:  Recent performances would suggest the 30-year-old is enjoying the form he enjoyed four years ago when he won Paris-Roubaix in 2015. 

Greg Van Avermaet: he bounced back from two mechanical problems and went on to win in 2017, will be hoping to repeat his previous success on the unforgiving terrain of the Hello of the North. Van Avermaet narrowly missed the podium in 2018 with fourth place, will line up at Paris-Roubaix for the tenth time on Sunday with four top ten results to his name. He's made it clear he wants to win again.

Alexander Kristoff: showed excellent form with a win at Ghent-Wevelgem and third at the Tour of Flanders. Kristoff has yet to stand on the podium at Paris-Roubaix, the big Norwegian was this week tipped by no other than Johan Museeuw to win his first plinth-mounted cobble. 

Sep Vanmarcke: That finish in 2013 may still keep the Belgian awake at night, but after a strong ride at the Tour of Flanders where team-mate Bettiol took the honours, Vanmarcke will, one imagines, arrive buoyed with his recent form. Would be a hugely popular winner for a rider that has promised so much over the years, but has agonisingly always fallen short.

Wout Van Aert: The former world cyclo-cross champion has been an absolute revelation in his first season with a WorldTour squad with two podium finishes at Strade Bianche and E3 this season and finished in the main group at the Tour of Flanders.

Dylan van Baarle: The Dutchman turned out to be the strongest from Team Sky's seven-man squad at the Tour of Flanders which may see him take over leadership duties at Roubaix, supported by powerhouses Luke Rowe and Gianni Moscon.

Zdenek Stybar: Deceuninck-Quick Step have a strong classics lineup with team-mates Kasper Asgreen, Philippe Gilbert, Yves Lampaert. Stybar won Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and E3 arrives in great form and gives the team multiple cards to play.

Oliver Naesen: Naesen has been there at end of proceedings throughout the spring classics and is tipped by the bookies as an outside favorite, team-mate Silvan Dillier at Ag2r-La Mondiale may put soem weight behind this.

Paris Roubaix 2019: Start list and teams

WorldTour teams

AG2R La Mondiale (FRA)
Astana (KAZ)
Bahrain-Merida (BHR)
Bora-Hansgrohe (GER)
CCC Team (USA)
Education First (USA)
Groupama-FDJ (FRA)
Lotto Soudal (BEL)
Movistar (ESP)
Mitchelton-Scott (AUS)
Quick-Step Floors (BEL)
Dimension Data (RSA)
Katusha-Alpecin (SUI)
Jumbo-Visma (NED)
Team Sky (GBR)
Team Sunweb (GER)
Trek-Segafredo (USA)
UAE Team Emirates (UAE)

ProContinental wildcard teams

Arkea-Samsic (FRA)
Cofidis (FRA)
Delko Marseille Provence (Fra)
Direct Energie (FRA)
Roompot - Charles (NED)
Vital Concept (FRA)
Wanty-Gobert (BEL)

Recent winners of Paris-Roubaix: 

2018: Peter Sagan (SVK) Bora-Hansgrohe
2017: Greg Van Avermaet (BEL) BMC Racing
2016: Matt Hayman, (AUS) Mitchelton-Scott
2015: John Degenkolb (GER), Giant-Alpecin
2014: Niki Terpstra (NED), Etixx-QuickStep
2013: Fabian Cancellara (SUI), RadioShack
2012: Tom Boonen (BEL), Omega Pharma-QuickStep
2011: Johann Vansummeren (BEL), Garmin-Cervelo
2010: Fabian Cancellara (SUI), Saxo Bank
2009: Tom Boonen (BEL), Quickstep
2008: Tom Boonen (BEL), Quickstep

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