On a day that Tom Boonen was bidding to bow out of the sport with a record fifth Paris-Roubaix title, it was his compatriot van Avermaet who became the 40th Belgian to win the Queen of the Classics.
With five riders in contention on the final lap entering the velodrome in Roubaix, Stybar launched a blistering attack. But the Belgian rider countered it brilliantly, going on the outside of the Czech rider and streaking past him in the last 10 meters. Dutchman Sebastian Langeveld finished third.
Van Avermaet screamed with joy, while Stybar thumped his handlebar in frustration. After dismounting, Van Avermaet rushed over to hug his BMC teammate Daniel Oss, who had ridden hard in front to put him in a winning position.
“It feels really good. I suffered a lot, but when you win you forget everything. I was just really strong in the end,” Van Avermaet said. “This race is right up there among the classics. After many years, I’ve managed to win it.”
Paris-Roubaix 2017 results:
1 Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) 5:41:07
2 Zdenek Stybar (Quick-Step Floors) ,,
3 Sebastian Langeveld (Cannondale-Drapac) ,,
4 Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo) ,,
5 Gianni Moscon (Team Sky) ,,
6 Arnaud Demare (FDJ) +12”
7 Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal) ,,
8 Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo) ,,
9 Adrien Petit (Direct Energie) ,,
10 John Degenkolb (Trek-Segafredo) ,,
cobbled classics cobblestones greg van avermaet paris-roubaix results sebastian langeveld zdenek stybar