Paris-Roubaix – Niki Terpstra wins for Quickstep


After a poor result in Tour of Flanders, Omega Pharma Quickstep bounced back with Niki Terpstra winning the biggest Monument in cycling, Paris-Roubaix

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Paris-Roubaix – Niki Terpstra wins for Quickstep


Photo: OPQS/Tim DeWaele

Omega Pharma – Quick-Step’s Niki Terpstra won the biggest race of his career — the most prestigious monument of cycling — Paris-Roubaix with a solo effort on Sunday.

With three OPQS riders in an 11 rider select group approaching six kilometers to go, including Tom Boonen and Zdenek Stybar, Terpstra decided to take matters into his own hands. The group included almost all of the race favorites including Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing), Sep Vanmarcke (Belkin ProCycling), and Peter Sagan (Cannondale).

It looked to be very close in the final kilometers. Terpstra’s gap was down to less than 9″ inside 4.5km to go. However, Terpstra’s teammates helped to control the pace of the chasing group behind, and he continued to go full gas. As a result of his perfectly timed attack, he reached the Roubaix velodrome with a gap of 20 seconds.

Terpstra made no mistake, looking behind him before celebrating on the bell lap and had plenty of time to raise his arms in celebration. Terpstra is now ranked 3rd in the UCI WorldTour Individual Classification with 200 points, and OPQS has further cemented their first place in the UCI WorldTour team ranking with 543 points.

Four time winner Tom Boonen was a major factor in the success of his team. He attacked with about 64 kilometers to go, and that was a major move in the race. A selection of riders slowly bridged to his group as the race pressed on. One rider included Peter Sagan.

Sagan tried his best to attack out of a new select group formation with more than 20 kilometers to go, but the pace of the chase group behind him was too much and he was caught with 15.3km to go by Cancellara, Vanmarcke, OPQS rider Zdenek Stybar, and John Degenkolb (Giant-Shimano). Boonen was behind with Terpstra.


Photo: OPQS/Tim DeWaele

That group caught the leaders inside the final 10 kilometers, and it was up to that very powerful group to decide who would win Paris-Roubaix. It was Terpstra who decided to not give any other riders a chance, and his gamble proved to be the right one as he went on to victory.

“I feel happy, but really tired,” Niki Terpstra said with a laugh. “When we came together on the last cobblestone section — at the end of the cobblestones — Wilfried Peeters told us if we go for the sprint we go with Tom. But, if you can attack, it’s always good to open the final”.

“So it was up to me and Zdenek to attack and they know I like to do it. So, 20 seconds later I attacked. It was the good one. When I looked behind me, I saw there was a gap, so it was just full gas to the finish line. Don’t look back, because that doesn’t help. They will come back anyway if you check or not”.


Photo: OPQS/Tim DeWaele

“Then, when I was crossing the finish line, it was just really special. I’m so satisfied. Finally I won a big one. We had a healthy, comfortable pressure from within the team to perform. The kind that motivates us to do well.”

“We won a lot of races but not a big one yet. We wanted to prove we can win a big one. Today we really proved we are a strong team that can also win the biggest races. As for me, two years ago I was 5th, and last year I was 3rd. If you can finish in the top 10 here you can also, with a bit of luck, win it”.

“Last year I was really close and this year I made it. Since I was a little child and I started cycling, Paris-Roubaix was the most special race for me. Now I have won it. It’s a dream come true.”

“Paris-Roubaix is a crazy race, old fashioned, but that’s why it’s special and why I love it that much. It was really my lucky day. I think we’re going to have a nice dinner with the team tonight to celebrate this great victory, and then I will enjoy my time at home this week with my family.”

Stybar – I felt better than last year
“It’s an improvement,” Stybar said of his 5th place finish. “I felt better than last year which is important for me. Of course I am happy the team has won after the perfect timing of Niki’s attack. I think as a team we’re really strong, but I think we proved that, as a team, we can also win. It was not an easy race today with a headwind”.

“Once you go on the head of the group it kills you. It was really hard, but the final results count. At the crucial points, I was lucky, and other times it was about important decisions. I was in the crash after Arenberg. I was lucky it was without any consequences for me or my bike. Then, in the final kilometers, I was in the breakaway with just Sagan, Degenkolb, Vanmarcke, and Cancellara”.

“I didn’t try to collaborate as I knew Tom and Niki were chasing our group. With Sagan and Degenkolb, it would be hard to go to the line with them. So I waited to work with my teammates, and it worked out for the team. We’ve had a good Spring Classics season, but this really puts the finishing touches when you win Paris-Roubaix.”



Photo: PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

Tom Boonen – I’m happy …
Four time winner said afterwerds “I’m happy with the feeling I had and the fighting spirit I displayed,” Boonen said. “I’m of course happy that we won in the end, but I of course wasn’t doing all the efforts to get 10th place, I was doing them to win the race.”

“I had a lot of bad luck today. But, I managed to get back in front on time, every time. Then, we were on the front with five or six guys and I thought ‘OK, it’s a good move,” but with the headwind, it was hard to motivate people to ride. There were two or three guys who didn’t have to ride and maybe some who could have collaborated better”.

“It was just me and Geraint Thomas going hard to stay in front. Then in the final when they came back with us and Sep Vanmarcke went with Fabian, I went straight away and Lars Boom crashed in front of me. So, I lost 100 meters. Then I couldn’t find my pedal on the cobblestones, it just kept turning.”

“But I managed to get back in the front with Niki and he launched he attacked with six kilometers and he managed to win the race. So, I’m happy for Niki. I’m very happy. As I said a couple days ago, if someone else on the team wins besides me today I will be excited as if I had won the race myself.”

Top 10s for Wiggins & Thomas in Roubaix
The Team Sky pair showed their class by making the lead group on the run into the famous Roubaix Velodrome, eventually finishing seventh and ninth respectively, 20 seconds behind breakaway winner Niki Terpstra.

Bradley Wiggins – “There’s a tinge of disappointment because I really had the legs,” he confirmed. “Even in the final, I felt strong. There was a part of it where I was pinching myself a bit – I don’t mind admitting that. It was a real honour to be there in the final”.


Photo: PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

“Going past Boonen on the Carrefour was something special. And then to come onto the Velodrome with the group of Cancellara and those guys – to be there was great.
I’ve got the confidence now that I can do it now and match those guys.”

“To go top 10, I think in hindsight is a good result. There’s not many Tour de France winners that have gone top 10 in Roubaix. On a personal note, it’s a nice thing.
We had G up there all day pushing. I was aware of that and I was just fighting to get into those sectors in the front. I’m just pleased that I committed to it and I didn’t bottle it. That’s a big part of what it’s all about”.

“When the two groups came together with 10km, I attacked after that we felt a bit out-numbered and it was going to be difficult. But then Terpstra played it perfectly. To have two guys there is great. There’s been such a good spirit in the team.”

Geraint Thomas – The former Junior winner of the race said “It was frustrating that some of the riders sat on in the move,” he said. “If we’d all ridden together then you never know how far we might have gone. They only really caught us on Carrefour de l’Arbre. My legs really started to go there. The rider in front of me left the wheel open and I couldn’t close it”.

“Then it all came back together, but I was on my knees to be honest in the last 10km. I spoke to Brad and he said he felt good. When Terpstra went, I looked to commit and try to keep the gap as small as possible. Brad didn’t really have the opportunity to go in the end, so it just came down to the sprint. Against those sort of guys it’s hard enough to beat them when I’m fresh. I tried to hit them on the back straight”.


Photo: PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

“It’s nice to get a top 10 again. The way I rode it wasn’t the easy way. We were out front for a lot of the time. It’s satisfying, but at the same time we wanted to get a podium. I think we’ve definitely improved as a whole over the Classics season. We’re missing (Ian) Stannard who would have been a key rider for us today.”

Third for Cancellera
“It was a special race; very tactical. Vanmarcke and I tried from the back but QuickStep did a good job,” explained Cancellara about the tactics at the end of the race. “They played it well. People were expecting my attack on the cobbles, but I had ‘funny’ legs the whole time today.”

“It was a hard finish, and it was tough with me being alone at the end, and other teams still had two riders. I think I had no other choice. It was normal that there was not a huge collaboration when I went away with the four others after Carrefour de l’Arbre. I tried, Vanmarcke tried, Degenkolb tried, but of course QuickStep played their cards, and with their tactics in the end, the strongest team has won.”

“First the wind was important and probably altered the race, and then the crash with Hayden [Roulston] where I had to change the bike,” continued Cancellara. “But that is how it is, Roubaix is like this. I am quite tired. I am somewhat disappointed, but in the end, I have to be realistic.”

“To still arrive on the podium, and under the circumstances that we went through today, I have to be satisfied. There was no panic when Boonen attacked,” added Cancellara. “It was still far to go, and it was a lot of headwind, and still a lot of riders in the peloton. I knew that I had to wait still, and I did not have so many cards to play anymore.”

“When there are still 20-30 riders, and with the headwind, it was not the moment to try. All in all, I am proud,” said Cancellara. “I was a big favorite, and that makes it more difficult. But I have finished on the podium in the last 12 Monuments, and I can say that I am happy with my spring campaign. I get measured on my wins, and not second or third, but really this is not bad. Now it is time for a nice rest.”


Photo: PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

Second for John Degenkolb (Giant Shimano)
John explained afterwards “I’m so proud of this result, and of the way my team rode and supported me today. This is my first podium in a monument and it is such a great feeling.”

“I had a few problems but with the help of my team I managed to fight back on and then at the end had the strength to go with the front group. Bert was really important to have there in the finale and he put me in the perfect position for the sprint. On the run in I decided to focus on the sprint rather than trying to go with Terpstra. I am still young and have time to develop more.”

“It is such a great moment – second in Paris – Roubaix and I am just 25 years old. I cannot wait for what the future holds. I also hope that I can also motivate the younger generation of cyclists in Germany.”


1 TERPSTRA Niki Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 06:09:01
2 DEGENKOLB John Team Giant-Shimano 00:20
3 CANCELLARA Fabian Trek Factory Racing
4 VANMARCKE Sep Belkin-Pro Cycling Team
5 STYBAR Zdenek Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
6 SAGAN Peter Cannondale
7 THOMAS Geraint Team Sky
8 LANGEVELD Sebastian Garmin Sharp
9 WIGGINS Bradley Team Sky
10 BOONEN Tom Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
11 DE BACKER Bert Team Giant-Shimano 00:26
12 DéMARE Arnaud 00:47
13 EISEL Bernhard Team Sky
14 TURGOT Sébastien AG2R La Mondiale
15 LEUKEMANS Bjorn Wanty – Groupe Gobert
16 VANDENBERGH Stijn Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
17 VAN AVERMAET Greg BMC Racing Team
18 VAN EMDEN Jos Belkin-Pro Cycling Team
19 HUSHOVD Thor BMC Racing Team 01:05
20 DRUCKER Jean-Pierre Wanty – Groupe Gobert

30 PHINNEY Taylor BMC Racing Team 2.55
31 ROWE Luke Team Sky
37 BOOM Lars Belkin-Pro Cycling Team 02:59
38 VANSUMMEREN Johan Garmin Sharp
56 DEMPSTER Zakkari Team NetApp – Endura 7.06
67 FARRAR Tyler Garmin Sharp
93 MCEVOY Jonathan Team NetApp – Endura 9.55
105 BAUER Jack Garmin Sharp 13.42
113 MILLAR David Garmin Sharp 16:40


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