The very first Paris-Roubaix Women 2021 – Preview

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The cycling world has been patiently awaiting one of the most historic moments in cycling history, and the day has finally arrived, with the very first women’s Paris-Roubaix to be held on October 2 in France.

The Hell of the North has been the most famous monument on the men’s racing calendar for 117 editions, with the inaugural race taking place in 1896. The UCI and ASO organizers have made the decision to add an inaugural women’s event to the calendar. revised at the end of the season. in COVID-hit 2020. It was a historic moment for women’s cycling, as one of the world’s most iconic spring classics had opened its doors to the women’s peloton.

The inaugural edition was canceled last October, then canceled again, and rescheduled, this spring due to the pandemic.

The first edition of the event this Saturday will be a day in the history of women’s cycling and the rider who will be crowned the first Paris-Roubaix Women’s champion, 125 years after the crowning of the first men’s edition German champion Josef Fischer .

Join Cyclingnews for live text coverage of Paris-Roubaix 2021 Women, and register after the race for our full report, results, gallery, news and features on October 2, 2021 from 1 p.m. CDT until the finish.

How to watch

To follow Cycling news to Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for alerts on important stories, news, interviews and all the action during Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

The Paris-Roubaix Women will offer fans live race coverage and post-race programs on TV broadcast and live streaming platforms on October 2. The women’s race will start at 13:35 CET (local time) and is expected to end between 4:00 a.m. 45 and 5 p.m. CET.

You can purchase a Eurosport Player subscription for £ 6.99 / $ 9.26 for one month, £ 4.99 / $ 6.61 for a one-year monthly pass, or £ 39.99 / 52.99 $ for a 12 month pass.

Coverage via the GCN Race Pass, available on the GCN app, will be available in the UK, across Europe and select other countries around the world. Access to the UK will cost you £ 39.99 for one year. There is also an option to pay for the Race Pass month by month, although the annual pass is much better.

FloBikes owns the TV rights for Canada – a subscription will cost you $ 12.50 per month or $ 150 per year. Paris-Roubaix Femmes will be broadcast in Australia by SBS.

Paris-Roubaix Femmes will be available in the United States on NBC’s Peacock Premium. A seven-day free trial is available, while a Peacock Premium subscription will set you back $ 4.99 (or $ 9.99 ad-free) per month.

Around the world, a number of other broadcasters will broadcast the event, including Rai in Italy, Sporza and RTBF in Belgium, France TV3 in France, RTVE in Spain and NOS in the Netherlands, J Sports in Japan, Sky Sports in New Zealand. , TV2 Norway, DKTV2 in Denmark, RTL in Luxembourg, Señal Colombia and SuperSport Africa Saharan.

If you are outside your home area, you may be able to access your streaming programs with ExpressVPN which gives the possibility to simulate the return to your home country, allowing you to watch the race live on various devices, including Smart TV, Fire TV Stick, PC, Mac, iPhone, Android phone, iPad, tablets, etc.

Who to watch

Italy's Elisa Balsamo R sprints to the finish line to win ahead of the Netherlands Marianne Vos L in the elite women's 1577 km road cycling race from Antwerp to Leuven on day seven of the UCI Road World Championships de Flandre 2021 on September 25, 2021 in Leuven Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD AFP Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARDAFP via Getty Images

Elisa Balsamo (right) and Marianne Vos compete in a sprint for the rainbow jersey at the UCI Road World Championships, won by Balsamo (Image credit: Getty Images)

Organizers were forced to move Paris-Roubaix Femmes from its initial April slot on the Spring Classics calendar to an end-of-season October slot due to COVID-19, and many top riders in the peloton have targeted this event as goal number one. for the 2021 season.

Chantal van der Broek-Blaak will be the leader of SD Worx, while her newly retired compatriot Anna van der Breggen is expected to enter the race to gain experience before her new role as team manager. Van den Broek-Blaak targeted the event in the spring and, when it was canceled, she revised her plan for an end-of-season peak to try and win at Roubaix.

Cyclo-cross world champion Lucinda Brand has opted out of Paris-Roubaix in favor of the start of the Cyclo-cross World Cup schedule, however, Trek-Segafredo will field a candidate for Lizzie Deignan and support runners like Elisa Longo Borghini and Ellen van Dijk.

Two-time Belgian champion Lotte Kopecky will be on the starting line for Liv Racing with the support of Alison Jackson and Sabrina Stultiens. After finishing 16th at the World Championships at home last week, Kopecky will no doubt be looking for a big win at Paris-Roubaix before the end of the season.

Lorena Wiebes (Team DSM) returns to racing after recovering from a concussion suffered in an accident at the Simac Ladies Tour, which saw her absent from the World Championships last week. She will have strong support from Floortje Mackaij and Megan Jastrab on the cobblestones.

Emma Norsgaard will wear the Movistar colors, and chosen as favorite by her teammate Annemiek van Vleuten, who was added to the roster at the last minute. Van Vleuten had initially planned to take part in the Women’s Tour the following week, but instead opted for the more historic moment of Paris-Roubaix.

American champion Lauren Stephens will be on the starting line with her TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank team, and certainly a dark horse to watch after a successful gravel season.

The world witnessed an incredible elite women’s road race at the World Championships last weekend in Belgium, which ended in a showdown between new world champion Elisa Balsamo (Valcar Travel & Service) and Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma). The two powerful, hard-hitting drivers will also be on the starting line at Denain to be part of the memorable experience that will be the first women’s Paris-Roubaix.

The road

Paris-Rouabix Women 2021 - Profile

Paris-Rouabix Women 2021 – Profile (Image credit: Paris-Roubaix Femmes / ASO)

The very first edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes will start in Denain, south of Roubaix and near the border with Belgium.

The peloton will cover 115.6 kilometers, starting with three circuits around Denain. The women’s course will join the men’s course at Hornaing after 31 kilometers. The women’s route will follow the last 85 kilometers of the men’s route to Roubaix.

The women will tackle 17 cobblestone sectors, for a total of 29.2 km of cobblestone, and part of the course includes the two five-star sectors; Mons-en-Pévèle at km 67 and Carrefour de l’Arbre at km 98.5, before the famous velodrome-arrival of Roubaix.

The 17 cobbled sectors

  • 17 – Hornaing to Wandignies (km 31.1 – 3.7 km) ****
  • 16 – Warlaing to Brillon (km 40.6 – 2.4 km) ***
  • 15 – Tilloy to Sars-et-Rosières (km 44.1 – 2.4 km) ****
  • 14 – Beuvry-la-Forêt to Orchies (km 50.5 – 1.4 km) ***
  • 13 – Orchies (km 55.5 – 1.7 km) ***
  • 12 – Auchy-lez-Orchies to Bersée (km 61.6 – 2.7 km) ****
  • 11 – Mons-en-Pévèle (km 67 – 3 km) *****
  • 10 – Merignies to Avelin (km 73 – 0.7 km) **
  • 9 – Pont-Thibault to Ennevelin (km 76.4 – 1.4 km) ***
  • 8 – Templeuve – L’Epinette (km 81.8 – 0.2 km) *
  • 8 – Templeuve – Moulin-de-Vertain (km 82.4 – 0.5 km) **
  • 7 – Cysoing to Bourghelles (km 88.8 – 1.3 km) ***
  • 6 – Bourghelles to Wannehain (km 91.3 – 1.1 km) ***
  • 5 – Camphin-en-Pévèle (km 95.8 – 1.8 km) ****
  • 4 – Carrefour de l’Arbre (km 98.5 – 2.1 km) *****
  • 3 – Gruson (km 100.8 – 1.1 km) **
  • 2 – Willems to Hem (km 107.5 – 1.4 km) ***
  • 1 – Roubaix-Espace Charles Crupelandt (km 114.2 – 0.3 km) *

What to expect

What to expect

Paris-Roubaix countryside

Paris-Roubaix countryside (Image credit: Thomas Maheux)

It’s hard to predict how the first edition of the women’s Paris-Roubaix will unfold, but there are a few things to expect from a race so renowned for its sharp cobblestone sections en route to the Roubaix velodrome.

As the first female edition of the most famous monument in cycling history, there will be similarities in the limitless approach to cobblestone. The women’s race will not feature the nearly 100 km of open asphalt, but will start with short circuits in Denain before going straight to the point with 29.2 km of pavement integrated into the last 85 km of the race.

The most powerful riders will do well on cobblestones, and we think of Jolien D’hoore, Chantal van den Broek-Blaak or Ellen van Dijk as a few examples of strong riders who could win a race of this nature.

It’s not just about power, however, and positioning in the pavement will be just as important. We can expect riders who have great skills in handling and positioning the bike among the peloton to be successful in a race like Roubaix, as it will be the riders who can hold their own position at the front of the peloton and climb. the first on the cobblestones. We can turn to cyclists like Marianne Vos or Christine Majerus, whose cyclo-cross skills will give them extra confidence in handling and positioning the bike on rough terrain.

The best equipped teams for a race like Paris-Roubaix will have an advantage. Teams such as Trek-Segafredo and SD Worx have bikes custom designed for comfort and speed on cobblestones.

Rain is forecast for this weekend. Rain has already fallen and southwesterly winds are expected to blow showers over northern France on Saturday and Sunday, meaning tailwinds and even crosswinds are possible, and we can expect that. let this be an additional dimension of difficulty for the race.

Luck is always a factor at Paris-Roubaix; too much bad luck will end a runner’s chances of success and the winning runner must be lucky to avoid the mechanics and almost inevitable falls on the pavement.

In short, all the women on the starting line will want to win this race but only one can ever be crowned the first winner of Paris-Roubaix Femmes.

24 teams

  • Futuroscope FDJ New-Aquitaine
  • Trek-Segafredo Women
  • SD Worx
  • Liv racing
  • Movistar team
  • Alé BTC Ljubljana
  • Canyon-SRAM Racing
  • Team BikeExchange
  • DSM team
  • Lotto Soudal Ladies
  • Coop Team – Hitec Products
  • TIBCO Team – Silicon Valley Bank
  • Doltcini – Van Eyck – Continental Team Proximus
  • Drops – Le Col s / b TEMPUR
  • Parkhotel Valkenburg
  • Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling
  • Valcar – Travel & Services
  • Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime Women Cycling
  • Arkéa Pro cycling team
  • NXTG Race
  • Bepink
  • Jumbo-Visma Women Team

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