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Cyclingnews 2008 Reader Poll Results

Best One Day Race

Roubaix rules one-day races

By Gregor Brown

Tom Boonen wins in the velodrome, thanks to his sprinting skills
Photo ©: Roberto Bettini
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The Paris-Roubaix took one-day race top honours in Cyclingnews' reader poll for a seventh straight year in 2008. The 112-year-old race held over cobbled roads in northern France took more votes than the six other races in our competition combined.

Belgium's Ronde van Vlaanderen and the Olympic road race finished behind Paris-Roubaix's 6843 points in second and third with 1511 and 1216 votes, respectively.

"It was a long time since I won a race of this calibre," said Roubaix winner Tom Boonen after his victory. Boonen knows the big races well – he won the race that contains nearly 52.8 kilometres of pavé roads in 2005 and other races like stages in the Tour de France, the World Championship and Ronde van Vlaanderen.

This year, the Ronde van Vlaanderen moved up in the charts with nearly double the votes. The difficult course in the Flanders region of Belgium is a true hard-man's course. Race organisers could not have asked for a better result in 2008 than Stijn Devolder's win in the country's champion jersey.

The final 36 kilometres of Roubaix was dominated by a three-man escape that included the sport's biggest one-day racers - Boonen, Fabian Cancellara and Alessandro Ballan. The winner was certain to come from the trio once their move had over a two-minute advantage. It was in sharp contrast to the explosive ending in Milano-Sanremo and the World Championships.

Cancellara blasted clear of a select group with only two kilometres remaining in Sanremo. It was a surprise ending to a race that normally ends in a sprint. Another Roubaix escapee, Ballan, fired a similar successful move at the World Championships, albeit one kilometre further away from the finish. The races finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in our reader poll.

The Olympic men's road race benefited from its location along the Great Wall of China. Samuel Sánchez won gold in a race that lacked the tactics of the other top one-day events.

The Paris-Roubaix has won every one-day race poll since we started the category in 2002.


                                                                                  Votes  %age
1 Paris-Roubaix                                                                    6843  58.03
2 Ronde van Vlaanderen                                                             1511  12.81
3 Olympic Games men's road race                                                    1216  10.31
4 Milano-Sanremo                                                                    979  8.30
5 Men's UCI World Championship race                                                 719  6.10
6 Flèche Wallonne                                                                   370  3.14
7 Het Volk                                                                          155  1.31

                                                                           Total: 11793