14/04/19 - 11:15 AM
Road race - Men
Paris - Roubaix • Stage2

Road race - Men

Follow the Paris - Roubaix live with Eurosport. The Paris - Roubaix race starts at 11:15 on 14 April 2019. Find Paris - Roubaix results, calendar, standings and table. Get all the info on the teams to watch.
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Here's the provisional top 10 although we're not sure if Vanmarcke is in the right place after that mix up with his bike.


Sep Vanmarcke (EF Education First) and Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) completed the top five before Frenchman Florian Senechal (Deceuninck-QuckStep) led home a chasing pack featuring the likes of 2017 winner Greg Van Avermaet (CCC Team) and Zdenek Stybar (Deceunicnk-QuickStep).


What a ride from the young German Nils Politt, though. He was very much cast in the Silvan Dillier role there - Gilbert's win was never really in doubt, as per Sagan last year - but he rode extremely well to star in both the break and the finale.


That's Philippe Gilbert's fifth victory in Monuments after Il Lombardia (2009, 2010), Liege-Bastogne-Liege (2011) and the Ronde van Vlaanderen (2017). He just needs Milano-Sanremo to go before he nets a full house...


The Belgian used all his experience and superior kick to come past Nils Politt (Katusha-Alpecin) on the inside of the final corner to take his first every victory in Paris-Roubaix. Deceuninck-QuickStep team-mate and fellow Belgian Yves Lampaert celebrates behind for crossing the line for third place.




They're high up on the banking and Gilbert has Politt ahead of him as they pass the ringing bell. Gilbert has him where he wants him, but who knows...


Politt lead Gilbert them under the flamme rouge as they approach the velodrome.


On to the final stretch of cobbles, Sector 1: Roubaix (km 256 - 0.3 km) *.


Lampaert is still riding hard in pursuit. He's 28 seconds down and will finish on the podium - but you never know what may happen ahead, so why not?


Sagan has blown up completely... he has nothing left in the tank and looks to be pedalling squares. A top ten finish today looks unlikely at this rate because he'll be caught and passed by the others.


Sagan has been dropped so it looks like QuickStep - and Belgium - will have two riders on the podium today. Vanmarcke, with his bike problems, has also faded back.


Just seven clicks to go now and they're now through all the tough stuff. Gilbert and Politt have 40 seconds. Van Aert has been passed by the main pack of chasers.


Meanwhile, Wout Van Aert is about to be caught by the pack. Our two leaders have entered the penultimate stretch of cobbles, Sector 2: Willems to Hem (km 251 - 1.4 km) ***, with 35 seconds.


Vanmarcke is holding onto the Mavic neutral car discussing his options. With the gap growing, he has to decide if he undergoes a mechanical change or just settles for fifth place on a shanked bike.


Just two more cobbled sections to go - but the last one is just a routine stretch outside the velodrome. Politt and Gilbert are combining well. They have 25 seconds now.


Gilbert will be very happy about this: entering the final 10km of Paris-Roubaix in the lead alongside a strong rider in Politt, but one whom he should really beat in a final sprint. But it's not over: Sagan looked popped, but he's 20 seconds back with Vanmarcke and Lampaert.


Vanmarcke wants a new bike - and it's no surprise because he's still riding Sebastian Langeveld's bike following a swap before. It's a back wheel change that he needs. Or is it a gearing issue? He's not happy and is sandbagging this chasing trio as the gap stretches to 15 seconds.


Attack from Nils Politt! The big German has ridden clear! Gilbert rides in pursuit, while Lampaert rejoins Sagan and Vanmarcke behind.


We're on to Sector 3: Gruson (km 244 - 1.1 km) **.


Sagan leads them out of the Carrefour. Politt and Vanmarcke have rejoined him and Gilbert, and Lampaert isn't further behind. Van Avermaet - in leg and arm warmers - is still leading the chase.


Big attack from Gilbert in the gutter, taking the reins from Lampaert. Sagan is straight onto his wheel. Vanmarcke and Politt chase but Lampaert has been dropped...


It's Lampaert who puts in the first acceleration but Sagan's right on his wheel and all the others are there. Around 1:10 back it's Greg Van Avermaet who leads the pack into this decisive cobbled sector.


Right, time for action. It's the third of three five-star cobbled sections, Sector 4: Carrefour de l'Arbre (km 242.5 - 2.1 km) *****.


Three becomes five just as they exit Sector 5. So all that effort only managed to ditch the one rider, Wout Van Aert.


Onto Sector 5: Camphin-en-Pévèle (km 239.5 - 1.8 km) **** and Lampaert is combining well with Vanmarcke as they bid to rejoin the leaders. It was a tough call for the Belgian national champion, because he'll know how much team-mate Gilbert will want to win this one. But he, too, could make history today: no one has ever won Paris-Roubaix in the Belgian national champions jersey.


ATTACK: Gilbert accelerates out of Sector 6 and takes Sagan and Politt with him. Behind there's a Belgian trio of Van Aert, Vanmarcke and Lampaert who have not reacted.


The gap is down to 50 seconds on Sector 6: Bourghelles to Wannehain (km 234.5 - 1.1 km) ***. Behind, Matteo Trentin has been dropped by the chasing pack, which is still being led by Vandenbergh.


Of the six leaders we have four in arm-warmers (Sagan, Gilbert, Vanmarcke and Politt) and two without (Lampaert and Gilbert). They're onto Sector 7: Cysoing to Bourghelles (km 232 - 1.3 km) ***. The gap is 55 seconds.


On paper, Sagan is the fastest finisher of these six riders. Gilbert and Lampaert both have a kick, but the powerhouses Vanmarcke and Politt are bigger Diesel-engined riders - but then again, so was Mat Hayman, and he denied Tom Boonen three years ago quite memorably. Van Aert's sprint is not excellent and he had that crash earlier, so he could be feeling it come velodrome time. Of course, a rider like Van Avermaet or Degenkolb could still return from the pack behind...


It's Lampaert setting the tempo through that section as the advantage comes down to 58 seconds. Behind it's Stijn Vandenbergh who leads the chase.


Now it's Sector 8a: Templeuve - Moulin-de-Vertain (km 225 - 0.5 km) **.


Van Aert, who crashed earlier, and had a shocker in the Arenberg, leads Sagan through that first section.


The next sectors are short and split into two. First up is the shortest of them all today, Sector 8b: Templeuve - L'Épinette (km 224 - 0.2 km) *.


So many good scenarios here... Sagan making it two in a row, Gilbert winning his fourth Monument, Vanmarcke ending his Monuments duck and giving EF a second win after Flanders, Van Aert picking up his maiden Monument win before Mathieu van der Poel, Politt pulling off a real surprise and coming of age, Lampaert winning as Belgian national champion to end the Belgian barren run in classics this year... Who's your money on - or will someone from pack still have their say?


With Section 9: Pont-Thibault to Ennevelin (km 220 - 1.4 km) *** done the lead of the sextet ahead had moved above one minute. Behind, the chasing pack has swelled in numbers.


The gap is 50 seconds now as Van Avermaert leads the chasers out of Sector 10.


Greg Van Avermaet decides it's time to react. He puts in a dig from the pack, but it's closed down quickly by Stybar.


Still 40 seconds now as the six leaders enter the short Sector 10: Mérignies to Avelin (km 215.5 - 0.7 km) **.


With the gap growing to 40 seconds, moves are coming in from those who feel they may have missed the boat. Jasper Stuyven is the latest to throw down the hammer. Sarreau and Laporte have been caught, with that Astana rider being Davide Ballerini. Stybar is there, knowing he has two QuickStep team-mates further up the road.


The Sagan-Gilber group have 25 seconds over the pack now. Laporte and now Sarreau have been dropped. An Astana rider has ridden clear of that small pack - Laurens de Vriesse possibly.


We're onto the second of three five-star sections, Sector 11: Mons-en-Pévèle (km 212 - 3 km) *****


Sarreau and Laporte have joined the Sagan group, who have Gilbert in their sights. And it's Sagan who rides off in pursuit of Gilbert, forcing the others to chase.


Sagan and Van Aert back together but on the right end of this race. An hour or so ago, they both came a cropper on the Arenberg. Here's a reminder...

Video - Sagan, Van Aert ride off cobbles in Arenberg Trench


Gilbert has dropped Politt. Meanwhile, behind it's a quartet of Sagan, Van Aert, Vanmarcke and Lampaert who chase, although the latter is not doing much given his team-mate and compatriot is further up the road.


We're hearing that Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data) has punctured.


Selig has been joined by the Sagan group so he will help pace his team-mate. The gap back to the pack is about 10 seconds now.


Peter Sagan has ramped up the pace and taken Van Aert, Vanmarcke, Lampaert, Ivan Garcia, Sarreau and Christophe Laporte with him. Up ahead, Selig has been dropped.


Still 25 seconds for this leading trio of Gilbert, Politt and Selig as they enter Section 12: Auchy to Bersée (km 206.5 - 2.7 km) ****.


We're hearing that the zen American Taylor Phinney (EF Education First) has abandoned. Apparently he suffered a mechanical but the EF team car missed him standing on the roadside...


Frenchman Marc Sarreau leads the chase in the pack for Groupama-FDJ, his injection of pace stretching things out and momentarily splitting the 30-strong group. It's really thinning out as we enter the business end of this race. It's from around here that Tom Boonen put in his decisive attack when he last won this race...


The three leaders have 23 seconds as they enter Sector 13: Orchies (km 199 - 1.7 km) ***.


This from Van Aert's earlier chase back into contention following his crash...

Video - 'Cyclocross skills at the ready!' - Van Aert goes offroad to avoid cars


Gilbert has never won Paris-Roubaix. If he does today then he'll have won four of cycling's five monuments... Trek have two riders on the front leading the chase with Sagan just behind and Stybar lurking. Kreder, meanwhile, has been dropped by the other leaders.


Gilbert leads the quartet, who have 15 seconds to play with over a Trek-led pack, onto Sector 14: Beuvry to Orchies (km 194 - 1.4 km) ***.


ATTACK: Nils Politt has attacked in the feed zone. He's joined by Philippe Gilbert (QuickStep) and Rudy Selig (Bora-Hansgrohe). They join Kreder to make a quartet up the road.


That crash from Wout Van Aert earlier on.

Video - Van Aert suffers heavy crash just after changing his bike


Sep Vanmarcke is in this main pack, as, it seems, are all the big favourites with the exception of Kristoff and Benoot, who had withdrawn.


Lone leader Kreder is through the latest cobbled section and the chasing pack goes through a feed zone with a deficit of 12 seconds.


Crash for Sagan's Bora team-mate Marcus Burghardt on the side of the road but nothing serious for the big German.


We're hearing that Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal) has withdrawn the race in tears following a collision with the Team Jumbo-Visma car. Terrible news there.


There's no let up as the next cobbled section gets under way. It's Sector 15: Tilloy to Sars-et-Rosières (km 188.5 - 2.4 km) ****


Wesley Kreder is the only remaining rider from that quartet out ahead, the Dutchman from Wanty-Groupe Gobert has about 10 seconds as they exit the cobbles.


Van Aert is back with Haussler and they have the pack in their sights. Vandenbergh, who has the Strava record for this section, comes to the front to lead the chase on the four leaders, and protect his KOM.


Van Aert is picking off riders and is now 45 seconds back. Those four leaders have just about five seconds over the pack, which is down to about 50 riders.


There are four riders out ahead of the pack, which is being led by Florian Senechal of QuickStep, with Vandenbergh and a couple of Ag2R riders just behind. The four leaders are Kreder, Lemoine, Turgis and Van Hooydonck.


We're now on to Sector 16: Warlaing to Brillon (km 185 - 2.4 km) ***


Here's that Van Aert crash from earlier...


Van Aert is still over a minute down and could really do with some help here. He's also facing a fierce battle with the team cars, who are all over the place. Still, it could be worse - he could be even further in arrears like Alexander Kristoff.

Peter Sagan of Slovakia and Team BORA - hansgrohe

Van Aert is battling more than a minute off the pace and on his own. He starts the joint-longest section of cobbles, Sector 17: Hornaing to Wandignies (km 179 - 3.7 km) ****, and has to take immediate evasive action after the team cars slam on the brakes ahead of him. He rides along the verge and among the potholes, but it's been a terrible half-hour for the Belgian.


CRASH: Wout Van Aert, on a new bike after stopping for a change, loses the back wheel on a right-hand bend - for no apparent reason - and goes down hard on his right. Something's clearly not right with the Belgian, whose bike handling is usually so good, and who had only just got back after his stutter on the Arenberg.


Puncture for Tiesj Benoot of Lotto Soudal. Van Aert and Haussler have joined the back of the pack now being led by Groupama-FDJ.


Kasper Asgreen, second last week a Flanders, joins the Van Aert group after a puncture as they hit Sector 18: Wallers to Hélesmes (km 170 - 1.6 km) ***


We've had numerous counter attacks on the flat after the Arenberg and it looks like Vandenbergh has now sat up. Rowe and Stybar signal their team cars. The Van Aert-Haussler chasing group have Matti Breschel with them. No news of the Kristoff group further back.


Van Aert and Haussler were about one minute in arrears exiting the Arenberg. They have Bora's Schillinger sandbagging them but have 40 seconds to make up now.


Vandenbergh has about five seconds to play with after the Arenberg, with the likes of Sagan, Van Avermaet, Lampaert, Degenkolb and other heavy hitters all in place.


Ag2R-La Mondiale play the Stijn Vanderbergh card as the big Belgian rides clear. The peloton behind has been whittled down to about 40 riders max.


Van Aert clearly has a mechanical. He's riding off the back with Heinrich Haussler, who must have had a problem, too.


Problem for Wout Van Aert on the left-hand side of the road - and Peter Sagan has to dodge the Belgian with finesse, amazingly keeping upright.


It's Arenberg time! And it's the Olympic champion and 2017 winner Greg Van Avermaet who leads the pack onto Sector 19: Trouée d'Arenberg (km 164.5 - 2.3 km) *****


Groupama-FDJ are there, too, for Arnaud Demare. Here's the new-look Arenberg after that work done to it over the winter. The opening 500 metres of the 2.3km sector have been painstakingly restored this winter by Les Amis de Paris-Roubaix, who cleaned out the grass and moss, reset some broken cobbles and filled the joints with special mortar.


There's a little bit of a lull now as Trek, Ag2R, Bora, CCC and QuickStep come to the front ahead of the Arenberg.


CRASH: Matej Mohoric skids out on a tight corner out of the cobbles and the Slovenian will need a new bike, it seems. The Arenberg is coming up in 5km.


Dylan Van Baarle now takes up the pace on the front - and, while the Sagan group is back with the main pack, the Kristoff group is still two minutes off the back.


The two groups are back together as Marco Haller leads the race onto Sector 20: Haveluy to Wallers (km 156.5 - 2.5 km) ****


HORRIBLE CRASH: A QuickStep rider has ploughed into a traffic island at top speed. It's Iljo Keisse and that will be his race over. Luckily, the sighpost had a piece of padding otherwise that would have been far worse.


Maciej Bodnar is dropping back to the second group to help ace back Bora team-mate Sagan. The gap is 20 seconds. Lotto Soudal are involved too so perhaps Benoot has missed the split as well.


We're hearing that Peter Sagan has been distanced following that earlier crash. He's in a second pack with Kristoff and Oli Naesen around 30 seconds down.


It looks like Wout Van Aert is in this group with Senechal. That would be interesting - altough the gap is minimal as they exit the cobbles in single file. There's another 11km now until the next section, then it's the Arenberg, so it may bunch back up before the big one.


Senechal is in a group of six alongside Haller and Lars Boom of Rompoot. They have a small gap going into Sector 21: Maing to Monchaux-sur-Ecaillon (km 142.5 - 1.6 km) ***


Britain's Ian Stannard is now riding on the back. The Sky rider doesn't look to have a mechanical problem but he's struggling to keep up with pace. Senechal's pace has caused a small split with six riders going clear. And Kristoff has yet another puncture...


It's all strung out as Florian Senechal, a former Roubaix Juniors winner, sets tempo for QuickStep. There's a single Wanty Groupe-Gobert rider out ahead with a tiny gap. And CRASH: Daniel Oss (Bora Hansgrohe) hits the deck with a couple of others. He's holding his wrist and that could be a blow for team-mate Sagan.


It's all back together (the multiple riders off the back, aside) as the race enters Sector 22: Quérénaing to Maing (km 140.5 - 2.5 km) ***


Kristoff and Naesen are near the back of the pack at the moment as the peloton closes in on the break.


We're hearing that the Jumbo-Visma rider who went down hard earlier on was Taco Van der Hoorn. Thankfully, he is said to be conscious. We're onto Sector 23: Verchain-Maugré to Quérénaing (km 136.5 - 1.6 km) ***


CRASH: A Mitchelton-Scott rider hits the deck with a Dimention Data rider there. Then, a bit later, there's a touch of wheels in the pack which brings half a dozen rider to a standstill, including Peter Sagan, the defending champion.


Just 15 seconds now for the break as Bahrain Merida continue leading the chase.


CRASH: A Jumbo-Visma rider in the pack loses it on a bend and slams head-and-shoulders into a ploughed field. That was a heavy fall and he doesn't seem to be moving. Let's hope he's ok. We'll let you know it is's a big name - could have been Van Aert, but unlikely given his bike-handling skills.


Attack by Edward Theuns of Trek Segafredo, who decides that now is the time to go given the reduced lead of the break.


There's a small spill at the back of the pack as things bunch up going into Sector 24: Vertain to Saint-Martin-sur-Écaillon (km 127.5 - 2.3 km) ***


Remember, you can listen to all the latest from our Bradley Wiggins podcast by subscribing - for free - here. Last week, Sir Brad chatted cobbles and his relationship with Chris Froome, while later this evening he'll be giving us his thoughts on today's race.


Bahrain Merida and Jumbo-Visma have bodies on the front of the pack and it looks like the break won't last much longer because it lacks coherence and already the likes of Lampaert are looking over their shoulders. The gap is 28 seconds.


How did it come to be that the official list of Paris-Roubaix winners exceeds the number of races by one? This year marks the 70th anniversary of the year two riders were declared joint-winners of Paris-Roubaix despite crossing the finish line minutes apart...


There's a 10km gap now before the next cobbled section and so it's a chance for things to regroup a little. The gap for the break, which must be fewer than 20 riders now after those punctures and earlier casualties, is down to 35 seconds.


Meanwhile, at home, fans are settling in for a fun afternoon...


Politt leads the break onto Sector 25: Saint-Python (km 118.5 - 1.5 km) **


Ah, that's a blow for Trentin: the Italian picks up a flat and needs a new rear wheel from the Mavic support moto. He then stops for a wheel from a team-mate once the pack catches him up - and Trentin will now have to ride back onto the pack having been in the leading move only a few moments away.


Puncture for Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) in the pack.


It's Marco Haller, the Austrian, who leads the break through this, the longest sector of pave. He has Ballerini of Astana and Gaudin right behind. Total-Direct Energie team were dealt a blow last week with Niki Terpstra's concussion in that Flanders crash ruling him out today. But in French duo Gaudin and Petit they have riders who have both finished in the top 10 at the Roubaix velodrome - and both of them are in the mix today.


Another tough one now in Sector 26: Quiévy to Saint-Python (km 116 - 3.7 km) ****


Bora and Bahrain Merida are on the front of the pack - and Andre Greipel has a flat, which will be a blow for the veteran German. Sector 27 done and very much dusted.


They come thick and fast now. It's Declercq who leads the break onto Sector 27: Viesly to Quiévy (km 101.5 - 1.8 km) ***


That's the second sector of cobbles over - and some of the leaders are now shedding their gilets, most notably Declercq and Breschel.


With no rain having fallen on the cobbles for a while, there's a lot of dust in the air on this long second sector. The gap is still around 48 seconds but the pack has really stretched out. And already we're getting the first punctures in the pack...


The leaders are onto Sector 28: Briastre to Viesly (km 108.5 - 3 km) ****


The 23 riders out ahead are: Jorge Arcas (Movistar Team), Michael Schär (CCC Team), Damien Gaudin (Direct Energie), Frederik Backaert (Wanty-Gobert Cycling Team), Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale), Kris Boeckmans (Vital Concept-B&B Hotels), Bert Van Lerberghe (Cofidis Solutions Credits), Frederik Frison (Lotto Soudal), Michaël Van Staeyen (Roompot-Charles), Pascal Eenkhoorn (Jumbo-Visma), Yves Lampaert (Deceuninck-Quick Step), Renardt Janse van Rensburg (Dimension Data), Nils Politt, Marco Haller (Katusha Alpecin), Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott), Davide Ballerini (Astana), Tim Declercq (Deceuninck-QuickStep), Stefan Küng (Groupama-FDJ), Matti Breschel (EF Education First), Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo), Adrien Petit (Total Direct Energie), Kamil Gradek (CCC Team) and Maciej Bodnar (Bora-Hansgrohe). Thanks to Cyclingnews for the comprehensive list.


The break has shed some numbers: two UAE riders and a Jumbo-Visma rider have been caught by the pack ahead of the next cobbled sector. The gap remains 50 seconds.


The next cobbled section has been dedicated to the late Michael Goolaerts, who died of a cardiac arrest last year in his first Roubaix appearance. The Belgian's race number 84 has been retired for this year's race in memory of the Wanty Groupe-Gobert rider.


The two leading groups came together after that first short cobbled section, so we have a large group of 26 riders with 45 seconds to play with. Bora lead the chase ahead of Sector 28.


Here we are. It's Sector 29: Troisvilles to Inchy (km 97.5 - 0.9 km) **


So, it's nine in that leading group: Gougeard, Van Staeyen, Backaert, Boeckmans, Van Lerberghe, Schar, Frison, Arcas and Gaudin. They have 10 seconds over the 13 chasers: Laengen, Janse Van Rensburg, Philipsen, Breschel, Theuns, Haller, Gradek, Declercq, Kung, Trentin, Politt, Eenkhoorn and Ballerini. There's a quartet behind in pursuit: Lampaert, Petit, Van Poppel and Bodnar, with the pack trailing the first move by 40 seconds ahead of the first cobbled sector.


Bora and Sky have missed the moves and so have riders on the front of the peloton, who trail the leaders by 40 seconds. The European champion Matteo Trentin is in the second group.


This is very interesting. Chasing down that eight-man break is a larger group of around a dozen riders with, it seems, Nils Politt of Katusha among them. I think I recognised the broad shoulders of Damien Gaudin in the lead group, too. Cobbles coming up in 10 clicks.


Right, this could be it: all of a sudden we have around eight riders out ahead and, finally, it could be given some leeway.


Another acceleration from Mads Pedersen but again it's covered by a raft of riders including a couple from QuickStep. Dillier, who was on the front a lot earlier, is now on the back after a visit to the Ag2R-La Mondiale team car. A split in the pack sees 20 riders go clear but the gap is being closed and it will all come back again, with Tim Declercq now setting the tempo for QuickStep.


There's a lot of frustration on the front of the pack at the moment with nothing of significance yet to go up the road. And with a lone rider from Vital Concept-B&B Hotels having a small dig, that remains the case.


Again, it's no can do for that move too. The defending champion Peter Sagan is currently off the back of the pack with the team cars picking up water bottles and chatting with his Bora-Hansgrohe directeur sportif. Here's how he won last year.

Video - Sagan sprints to stunning Paris-Roubaix victory in velodrome


Mads Pedersen gives it another go but once again he's thwarted. But here we go, there are about 15 riders who have a very small gap as the peloton stretches out through a roundabout. Perhaps something could come of this one - especially seeing the likes of Silvan Dillier and Philippe Gilbert in the mix.


With the pack back together, there's another dig from Mads Pedersen of Trek, who seems desperate to get up the road. He's joined by a Sunweb rider but the pack closes it down.


We have 30km till the first cobbled sector. And it looks like it's all over for those three out ahead.


With the gap dropping to 22 seconds, a move from a Rompoot rider tries to bridge over. It's Jesper Asselman. He has Wanty and Trek on his case. In fact, there's been a split off the front of the peloton with around 20 riders forcing a gap. This could be interesting.


The gap is up to 38 seconds now for the three leaders. Roelandts is no slouch in Paris-Roubaix: he finished 14th in 2011. Behind, Andre Greipel, the German veteran at Arkea Samsic, tried to bridge over but it came to nothing.


Those three riders mentioned earlier now have a gap of 35 seconds. They are Danish duo Mads Wurtz (Katusha-Alpecin) and Casper Pedersen (Team Sunweb), and the Belgian Jurgen Roelandts (Movistar).


Interestingly, French sports newspaper L'Equipe didn't put any riders on five or four stars, perhaps an indication of how tight and open today's race and field are. Their three-star riders are Sep Vanmarcke, Wout Van Aert, Alexander Kristoff and John Degenkolb, with five riders on two stars: Peter Sagan, Zdenek Stybar, Oli Naesen, Greg Van Avermaet and Kasper Asgreen. They then have a raft of riders on one star: Lampaert, Langeveld, Gilbert, Stuyven, Rowe, Keukeleire, Politt, Demare, Petit, Van Baarle and Benoot.


The first of 29 cobbled sections comes with around 150km remaining so we still have a fair bit before the bumps in this Game of Stones. This is the kind of thing that awaits, which is quite ridiculous to look at in the context of a bike race, really.


It's back together again and Magnus Cort is once again trying to force the pace for Astana. His push is countered by riders from Katusha, Sunweb and Movistar, and we have another small group off the front.


Marco Macato has called it a day but Pedersen has a second wind when he's joined by Switzerland's Silvan Dillier (Ag2R-La Mondiale). That's an interesting move from Dillier, who was in the break last year before riding with Peter Sagan all the way to the finish, where he finished second behind the Slovakian showman.


CRASH: Two riders down in a touch of wheels. And it's two Belgians: Julian Vermote (Dimension Data) and Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates). It's nothing serious and they'll be on their ways soon. But not an ideal start for the debutant Philipsen.


We're over 40km into the race and still we don't have a definitive move. Pedersen and Marcato have just 10 seconds now as Movistar and Wanty Groupe-Gobert front a strung-out peloton in pursuit. Sunweb and Bahrain-Merida also have riders trying to join the fun, as do Astana, Vital Concept and CCC.


The gap is up to 20 seconds for Marcato and Pedersen as Deceuninck-QuickStep and CCC Team mark out extra moves on the front of the pack. The latest comes from Vital-Concept, who send a rider clear with two others...


Some footage from the recons earlier last week. Gives you an idea why they say the cobbles are bone-jangling...


We now have two riders out ahead: Marco Marcato (UAE Team Emirates) and Mads Pedersen (Trek -Segafredo). So, a veteran and a young buck - and it's worth adding that the Dane, Pedersen, is a junior winner of this race. He also got in the break in Flanders last year - and held on for second place.


There's nothing quite like it: the 257-kilometre race from Compiegne to Roubaix via 29 sectors of bone-jangling, frame-cracking, puncture-inflicting pavé – that's a total of 54.5km of the rough stuff. It's the race us fans all dream of watching and a race just a select tranche of the peloton can realistically win. But with this year's 117th edition of the Hell of the North set to be more open than ever, it's a race which, for various reasons, some riders really need to win. Here they are, in no particular order…


It's all back together again after that move by Cort was deemed too dangerous by the pack. A few others are now trying their luck...


Cort has been joined by five riders with numerous others trying to bridge over. The peloton is all strung out as it crosses some exposed rolling fields but it looks like it's going to come back together again.


ATTACK FROM MAGNUS CORT: Now that's an interesting one... the Dane is one of Astana's protected riders today after showing fine form early in the season - and it looks like Cort is taking a page out of Mat Hayman's book and deciding that his best chances today lay in winning from a break.


And here's Britain's best hope today: Luke Rowe. The Sky rider finished 8th in 2015 but did not finish his last two editions. This will be his last race leading Sky before he slips into a domestique support role for the Grand Tours, when the team becomes Team Ineos.


Let's start with one from the defending champion, former triple world champion Peter Sagan, who could really do with a win today after a barren start to the season.


Talking of Delko Marseille Provence, it's the French second tier team who are now making a move once Gruzdev has been reabsorbed by the front of the pack. Surely we'll see a stronger, larger break going clear soon? In the meantime, let's bring you some videos and links to some race previews and features...


History is being made today by the Delko Marseille Provence team: the first black African rider is tackling the cobbles of Roubaix today - Joseph Areruya from Rwanda.


Still only 15 seconds for our lone leader Dmitriy Gruzdev, who is battling a strong headwind and frequently looking over his shoulder in the hope of some company.


Here's that new kit from the rebranded Total-Direct Energie team that I mentioned earlier. Bit of a cop out, if you ask me, but they didn't have long to come up with something.


For the 17th successive year we're going to have a dry Paris-Roubaix.


Those chasers were reeled in and so it's still just Gruzdev out ahead with a 30-second gap over the pack. The Kazakh rider has ridden 13 Monuments in his time but only finished seven of them. Unless he's joined by more bodies out there today, he'll have another DNF to his name... In six Paris-Roubaix appearances his best finish was 43rd in 2015.


Astana have yet another rider in the lead now and he has a small gap. Eventually a cluster or riders try and bridge over: could this be the move? The Astana rider is Dimitry Gruzdev.


Astana sent a rider off the front after things came back together, but that came to nothing. Now it's another Astana rider, Pim Ligthart, who is setting the tempo ahead of a rider from the new Total-Direct Energie team: Jean-Rene Bernaudeau's team have a new sponsor in Total and their black and yellow kit is now two-tone blue, white and red.


A reminder that we have 29 sectors of cobbles today for a total of 54.5km of the rough stuff. Some more stats here courtesy of Team Sunweb.


One non-starter for you today: Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) was due to start his first Paris-Roubaix this morning but the Colombian was struck down by illness over night so his team will hit the cobbles with only six riders.


Half a dozen riders have already zipped up the road but the gap is small.


They're off! The neutral sector is over and, at 10:14, the race is on one minute ahead of schedule...

Paris-Roubaix 2019 profile

Here's the route map for today's race...


The peloton is now rolling out of Compiege, the lefty suburb to the north-east of Paris, ahead of the official start of today's 257km race.


This is what they're racing for: the cobblestone trophy that awaits the winner of the 117th edition of Paris-Roubaix.


Good morning and welcome to live coverage of the Queen of the Classics, the Hell of the North, the long, grim, dusty cobblestone one - call it what you want: it's Paris-Roubaix, the third of cycling's five monuments and the last of the cobbled classics.