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Foremost Non-Winner of Paris - Roubaix (Poll)

Who should have won Paris-Roubaix but never did?

  • Jean MARECHAL

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Fiorenzo MAGNI

    Votes: 1 3.0%
  • Miguel POBLET

    Votes: 2 6.1%
  • Herman VAN SPRINGEL

    Votes: 1 3.0%
  • Freddy MAERTENS

    Votes: 10 30.3%
  • Adri VAN DER POEL

    Votes: 3 9.1%
  • Fabio BALDATO

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Juan Antonio FLECHA

    Votes: 8 24.2%
  • Thor HUSHOVD

    Votes: 6 18.2%
  • other

    Votes: 2 6.1%

  • Total voters
    33
Apr 1, 2013
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I am not including the likes of Peter Sagan or Alexander Kristoff, as a. I do not want to jinx their career and b. the question is not "who should be the next winner of ..." (same goes for Fillippo Pozzato, whom I think is still racing this)
 
Apr 1, 2013
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riders shortlisted but not making the final cut: Eugène Christophe, Roger Lapébie, Romain Maes, Stan Ockers, Eric Leman, George Hincapie
 
Jun 30, 2014
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Re:

loge1884 said:
riders shortlisted but not making the final cut: Eugène Christophe, Roger Lapébie, Romain Maes, Stan Ockers, Eric Leman, George Hincapie
Someone like Ballan should probably also make it on the shortlist.
 
Apr 1, 2013
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Re:

Libertine Seguros said:
Olaf Ludwig. Didn't get to ride it until he was nearly 31, then was 9th, 2nd, 3rd, 4th in consecutive years despite being past his peak. His record on cobbles in the 80s speaks for itself.

think you have a valid point there .... somehow Olaf Ludwig always escapes me as one of the finest sprinters and powerhorses of his generation ... perhaps because he came to the scene only at an age when others used to retire .... I remember the only sprinter I had on close radar in those days was madman Adoujaparov (a guy I definitely wouldn't want to be in his way on the last 200m)
 
Re: Re:

loge1884 said:
Libertine Seguros said:
Olaf Ludwig. Didn't get to ride it until he was nearly 31, then was 9th, 2nd, 3rd, 4th in consecutive years despite being past his peak. His record on cobbles in the 80s speaks for itself.

think you have a valid point there .... somehow Olaf Ludwig always escapes me as one of the finest sprinters and powerhorses of his generation ... perhaps because he came to the scene only at an age when others used to retire .... I remember the only sprinter I had on close radar in those days was madman Adoujaparov (a guy I definitely wouldn't want to be in his way on the last 200m)
LS on the money as usual ;) . For your point, Uwe Raab was another heck of a sprinter, track, road, ITT, a beast. Ludwig...great call.

But just so I disagree with LS every chance that I get (and that's not too often), I'll praise one of my favorite riders ever: Fons De Wolf, who won the Espoirs PR, turned pro, won GDL and MSR back to back, the Het Volk (Omloop) twice at least, runner-up in LBL, 4th at the '80 infamous edition. Podium in GW and AGR. two top-10 at the RVV. Points winner at the Vuelta with multiple stage wins. 2nd in PN.

PR: 6th in '80, 10th in '81, Fons didn't get his day in the sun (so to speak - gray skies prevail) in Roubaix. But what a rider! The "new Merckx" label was too much...

Big Thor Hushovd? Yeah. Paul and Phil squealing in the mikes would have been fun :D .
 
Dec 21, 2016
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I'm too young to have experienced some of the riders on that list, so I know them only by legend and YouTube. That's makes it hard for me to be able to compare them to the riders I did watch during their career.

If I you force me to cast a vote, then I'll vote Adri. I think that he has shown, after his career, how amazing his insight is: He takes one look at a course and reads it better than any commentator I've ever heard. Vague shot of a crash? Adri knows what went down. Conflicting weather reports during Roubaix? Don't worry, Adri just knows what to expect of the Trouée d'Arenberg.

Including only riders I've actively watched I would say Flecha. In any particular edition, there seemed to be a bigger favourite; someone destined to beat him; someone who actually did beat him. Nonetheless, he was always up there and you just knew he was going to be up there. He always gave it his best. It was hard not to like his riding and his dedication.
 
I'm only 25 years old so I didn't see half of these guys. Went with Hushovd over Flecha. Hushovd had the engine and a solid sprint whereas Flecha was always among the best guys but didn't have the sprint to count on. But yeah, hard to win PR when you're always up against guys like Cancellara or Boonen.
 
I feel like I don't have the knowledge of earlier eras to offer an informed judgement, but Flecha's consistency at P-R was truly remarkable:

2013-04-07 8 Paris - Roubaix
2012-04-08 4 Paris - Roubaix
2011-04-10 9 Paris - Roubaix
2010-04-11 3 Paris - Roubaix
2009-04-12 5 Paris - Roubaix
2008-04-13 12 Paris - Roubaix
2007-04-15 2 Paris - Roubaix
2006-04-09 4 Paris - Roubaix
2005-04-10 3 Paris - Roubaix
2004-04-11 13 Paris - Roubaix
2003-04-13 25 Paris - Roubaix