Boasson Hagen happy with 5th in Roubaix

The 114th edition of Paris-Roubaix was more than surprising as Matthew Hayman (Orica-Greenedge) sprinted to the win on the Roubaix Velodrome ahead of Tom Boonen (Etixx-Quickstep) and Ian Stannard (Team Sky).

Apart from the impressive Hayman, Edvald Boasson Hagen also put in a great performance to finish 5th, his best showing on the cobbles in Northern France to date. This does not mean that he had it easy. He punctured in the opening 50 KM and had to dig in to get back to the head of the race.

The defining moment of the race and of Hagen`s performance came with a little more than 105 KM to go when a crash split the peoloton. The Norwegian national champion was among the 20 riders at the front who broke clear of pre-race favorites Peter Sagan and Fabian Cancellara.

This newly formed group caught the early break with 65 KM to go and a couple of attacks later the front group was reduced to 15 riders. Just before the Carrefour de l’Abre Luke Rowe attacked in the crosswind and further reduced the leaders to just 5: Boasson Hagen, Stannard, Vanmarcke, Boonen and Hayman.

In the end Hayman and Boonen were the first to enter the Velodrome, but the other 3 chased and just made it onto their tails before the sprint started. Hayman was the strongest, while Hagen just did not have enough in the tank to finish higher.

Edvald Boasson Hagen: “It was hard but good. I was able to stay out of trouble for the most part but the last 10km was really hard, with a lot of attacks. It wasn’t possible to get better than 5th but it is the best result I have had at Paris-Roubaix so far so that is good, but obviously you would want more and to get a podium.”