For the second time in a row, Mathieu van der Poel won Paris-Roubaix after completing an attack of more than 60 kilometers. A week after his victory at the Tour of Flanders, Alpecin-Deceuninck celebrated at the Roubaix velodrome with Jasper Philipsen finishing second.

The podium was completed by Denmark’s Mads Pedersen (Lidl – Trek), relegating Germany’s Nils Politt (UAE Team Emirates) to fourth place. The top five was closed by the Swiss Stefan Küng (Groupama – FDJ), in the fastest edition in history. Colombian Juan Sebastián Molano (UAE Team Emirates) finished 76th, 12 minutes behind the winner.

The menu of the 121st edition of the ‘Hell of the North’ featured 29 cobbled sections and a total distance of 259.7 kilometers. The final stretch concentrated most of the cobbled sections with the Forest of Wallers, the Mons-en-Pévèle and the Carrefour de l’Arbre 17 kilometers from the finish.

The first hour of racing was completed at over 54 km/h. In the opening phase Per Strand Hagenes (Visma | Lease a Bike), Rasmus Tiller (Uno-X Mobility), Kasper Asgreen (Soudal Quick-Step), Liam Slock (Lotto Dstny), Marco Haller (BORA-hansgrohe), Gleb Syritsa (Astana Qazaqstan) and Kamil Malecki (Q36.5) got away.

The attackers didn’t get much of an advantage, so Dries De Bondt (Decathlon AG2R La Mondiale) and Dusan Rajovic (Bahrain Victorious) were able to make the jump. However, the peloton, led mainly by Alpecin-Deceuninck, didn’t give them much room. Even before the Wallers Forest, the initial breakaway was caught by the favored group.

Mathieu van der Poel and Jasper Philipsen rode very attentively with their teammates in the first cobbled sectors selecting the group. Then the pace dropped, allowing Stefan Küng, Laurence Pithie, Tom Pidcock, Nils Politt, Tim Wellens, Stefan Bissegger, Johan Jacobs, Jordi Meeus and Gianni Vermeersch to return.

With 70 kilometers to go, the three escapees were caught, after which a new situation began. In the Orchies section, Van der Poel went on the attack again, which immediately gave him a big lead. No one could follow the Dutchman with 60 kilometers to go.

In the final stretch, the world champion pulled out a considerable lead, to take another solo victory, true to his style. Mathieu van der Poel shone like never before and joined winners like Fabian Cancellara, Tom Boonen, Roger De Vlaeminck, who conquered Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix in the same season and equaled Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Peter Sagan, who won the ‘Hell of the North’ as world champions.