With the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic forcing the cancellation of this year’s edition of Paris-Roubaix, and with it, our traditional comprehensive tech coverage, we’re revisiting some of our favourite stories from the BikeRadar archive.
Back in 2014 – exactly ten years since he won the race – Magnus Bäckstedt spoke exclusively to BikeRadar, reliving his perfect Sunday in Hell and the extreme emotion that went with it.
“I’ve been living, eating and breathing Paris-Roubaix since I was 15, 16 years old,” Magnus Bäckstedt told BikeRadar when he reflected on his epic victory in the Hell of the North.
Ten years on and every moment of that race – his finest moment on a bike – appeared etched in stone, such is the power of his recall; every twitch from a rival or teammate, every cobble that could have wrecked his chances lives on in crystal-clear detail.
“I remember going across the final section in Hem,” he said. “I just managed to flick around a reasonable sized stone and I thought, ‘Oh, that was lucky’, and straight away thought if no one else clips that it’s a miracle.”
Bäckstedt made it to the Roubaix velodrome with Tristan Hoffman, Roger Hammond and Fabian Cancellara and won a thrilling dash for the line – informed in part by watching videos of previous sprint finishes.