Tom Boonen

Van Avermaet takes Paris-Roubaix from five-rider group in velodrome

After a fast and tactical Paris-Roubaix that saw a reversal of fortunes for many pre-race favorites, Olympic champion Greg Van Avermaet of BMC Racing took his first Monument victory in the Roubaix velodrome, beating out Zdenek Stybar (Quick-Step Floors) and Sebastian Langeveld (Cannondale-Drapac). The victory came as a bit of redemption for Van Avermaet, who …

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‘One of the classiest of the big champions’: Rivals, teammates celebrate Boonen’s career

Win or lose on Sunday, Tom Boonen’s retirement will leave the peloton without one of its most well-known champions. He’s been a ferocious and successful competitor, but also an athlete with some very human qualities. CyclingTips spoke to some of his teammates and rivals to get a picture of what the Belgian is really like. …

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After taking himself out of two classics in a row, Sagan’s spring campaign hinges on Paris-Roubaix

One moment, Peter Sagan was in good position, looking strong, and headed for the podium — or more. The next, through his own actions, he’d removed himself from the equation. This was the scenario at the Tour of Flanders last weekend, when Sagan skirted the cobblestones on the Oude Kwaremont, instead of riding the soft shoulder …

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With an eye on the all-time record, Boonen calm heading into final Roubaix

WIELSBEKE, Belgium (CT): Sitting at the head of the room, facing a sea of journalists, microphones and cameras at QuickStep’s pre-Roubaix conference, Tom Boonen looked fully at ease with himself. He was three days away from the final event of his professional career, a race he desperately wants to win. But even though the all-time …

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Special rim-brake S-Works Roubaix framesets shine light on UCI’s opaque commercialization rules

Specialized outfitted Tom Boonen with a custom S-Works Roubaix for his final appearances at the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix, a gleaming pearlescent white-and-gold machine that is wholly befitting the king of the cobbles. Yet Boonen’s bike at Flanders, as well as the bike he and Peter Sagan will use at Roubaix, is also special in two other …

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Cobbled Classics: Tom Boonen’s Specialized Roubaix

Tom Boonen raced his last Tour of Flanders last weekend, and team sponsor Specialized made sure he was properly fitted for the occasion — both literally and figuratively. An untimely drivetrain issue spoiled the fairy tale ending, but Boonen will get one last chance for glory on this same bike at Paris-Roubaix — the last …

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A dream day for Belgium: Gilbert solos to victory at dramatic Tour of Flanders

Belgian national champion Philippe Gilbert lived out a dream scenario for any Belgian cyclist Sunday at the Ronde van Vlaanderen — crossing the finish line of the most important race in Belgium, alone, in the tricolor of black, yellow, and red. On a day marked by crashes and slow bike changes of several pre-race favorites, Gilbert …

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Tom Boonen interview: Ambition still burning as an iconic career nears its end

Whatever happens this weekend and next, Tom Boonen will remain one of the top names in the sport. He knows it. We know it. A four-time winner of Paris-Roubaix, a three-time champion of the Tour of Flanders, he has equalled the previous record of wins in both events. However the Belgian wants more. He could …

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Gilbert on his resurgence with QuickStep: ‘I feel good in my skin’

Currently enjoying his best spring campaign for many years, as shown by a stage win and overall victory in this week’s Three Days of De Panne, Philippe Gilbert will begin the Tour of Flanders as one of the top favourites. His De Panne performances plus runner-up slots in the Dwars Door Vlaanderen and the E3 …

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Brake check: Will anyone ride disc brakes at Flanders or Roubaix?

After all the start-stop-start about disc brakes in the pro peloton, will anyone be riding them at the Tour of Flanders or Paris-Roubaix? Disc brakes offer not just better braking modulation, particularly in wet conditions, but also better clearance for a wider tire, which offers improved traction and a more comfortable ride. And while that sounds perfect for …

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