“…Easter, 1984. Maybe ’85. Half-term holiday with my parents. A Spanish hotel, a TV in the corner of the bar. A bike race, but not like any bike race I’d ever seen before. Not like those sunny Grand Tours scaling the snow-capped, sun drenched peaks of the Alps; suntanned limbs and a carnival of colour. Shirtless tifosi pouring Evian over dazzlingly white-socked continentals. No, this was dark, foreboding: crushed into the dour, bleak landscape by the leaden grey skies. Gripped by and pitched into a filthy quagmire…”
There quite simply is nothing else like Paris-Roubaix. New piece up here at the very desirable Quoc shoes site now on the most formidable bike race of the year.
“…You see that wheelbarrow or two’s worth of red brick-ends and smashed in old masonry strewn across the inside of that corner there? That’s a repair, not a blemish…”
You’re praying for a wet Roubaix? Been 15 or so since we had one, you say? I can tell you right now that the families, the wives and sweethearts of those boys out there with a number on their back today will be praying for anything but…
Pics: Pieter Van Hoorebeke (Get well soon, Jonger!)