…of course refers to the Paris-Roubaix, one of cycling’s Spring Classics, won this year by the Swiss rider Fabian Cancellara. It’s 60 kilometers are notorious for the numerous sections of pavé; cobbles which rattle every bone in a rider perched on rigid road bike, and threaten to throw steering off-course and into a fellow rider. Spectators love it; the riders may think differently.
Durham has it’s own version. Not so demanding, and being a criterium race rather than a point to point different skills are required. Tight cornering, good braking skills and the ability to make constant switches of riding style as the short courses often combine climbs, descents and sprints are the order of the day. This is one of the stages of the Pearl Izumi race series, and incorporates a nasty little climb with the addition of cobbles.
The race was won by Kristian House of Rapha Condor JLT, though he didn’t make my cut of favourite images from the evening! I’ll let them do the talking. Look closely though and you’ll see how much the riders enjoy cobbles – some can be seen riding the white lines of the road to find a smoother line.