The inaugural Paris-Roubaix Femmes saw Lizzie Deignan cross the line first in the Roubaix velodrome becoming the first women’s champion of the cobble Classic. Earning that historic title required some wildly impressive bike skills.
The women were welcomed to the iconic event with properly brutal conditions. Mud-slicked cobblestones claimed many of the favourites. Some crashed out of the race, others recovered after hitting the deck.
Deignan, who won in an 80-km solo attack, nearly suffered the same fate. Her back wheel skated out from under her, fishtailing on the mud-covered cobbles before coming back in line. The Trek-Segafredo rider drew on her cyclocross background to stay in control and ride away from this near-disaster moment.
Deignan’s incredible save avoided an incident that could have cost her the race. Though, judging by the P-R champion’s bloody hands, rubbed raw against her bars because of the French cobblestones, the Trek-Segafredo rider is tough enough that she would have recovered and continued her race.
Other rider’s didn’t ride away quite so clean. Congrats to Deignan on an epic win in France!