Servais Knaven writes Paris-Roubaix history
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Monday, April 12, 2010

Servais Knaven writes Paris-Roubaix history

by VeloNation Press at 10:38 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Spring Classics, Paris-Roubaix
 

While Team Miram wasn't able to make a difference on the podium in yesterday's Paris-Roubax, the German team was still able to help write history in the "Queen of the Classics" with veteran Servais Knaven.  The Dutchman started in Compiegne facing a 259 kilometer route through hell to equal the record of 16 finishes in the race by Belgian Raymond Impanis.  Knaven, who won the race in 2001, was able to make it to the end once again and create a new record of 16 starts with 16 finishes.

Impanis took more than 16 participations in the race to attain the record.

"This race day cost me ten years off my life!  This morning I was very nervous and absolutely wanted to have a good race," said Knaven, who finished 43rd.  "Now I am happy that I have accomplished it.  I am very proud, because this race has been part of my whole life as a pro cyclist."

The victory went to Swiss champion Fabian Cancellara, who pulled out an impressive solo ride nearly 50 kilometers from the finish.  Cancellara finished the day two minutes ahead of Thor Hushovd (Cervelo TestTeam) and Juan Antonio Flecha (Team Sky), who finished second and third respectively.

Knaven's only win in the "Hell of the North" was also the last professional race ridden by Franco Ballerini, who was honored by Paris-Roubaix organizers yesterday.  The Italian, who won the race in 1995 and 1998, died tragically in a rally car accident this past February.  The 'Franco Ballerini Pavé' trophy was earned by Filippo Pozzato (Katusha), who finished the race in seventh and was the first Italian across the line.

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