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101st Paris-Roubaix - CDM

France, April 13, 2003

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Who will reign in the Queen of the Classics?

By Jeff Jones

Cobbles and mud
Photo © CN
Click for larger image

The 101st edition of the Queen of the Classics will be the highlight of the season for many riders and fans alike. Considered the toughest race on the calendar, Paris-Roubaix stands above the rest as being a race where good luck and sturdy equipment go hand in hand with strong legs and tactical astuteness. For a rider to puncture four times and still win is almost unheard of in any race other than Paris-Roubaix.

During their 260 kilometre journey across the open, wind blown northern part of France, the riders have to negotiate 26 bone shaking, muscle numbing sections of cobblestones, relics of a past age where the horse was the transport vehicle of choice. There are 49.1 kilometres of these cobbles in total, and a great deal of power and skill is required to travel over them without coming to grief.

The combination of pavé and foul weather can lead to epic editions of this Classic, where its nickname "The Hell of the North" still applies. This description was first penned by a Parisian journalist visiting the area in 1919, when the organisers resumed racing after a five-year break due to World War 1. The roads were in such poor condition that the course had to be altered in several places. However, it was not the roads which inspired the comment, rather, it was the devastation of the countryside in a war which resulted in nine million victims.

Over the years, organisers have seen most of the pavé either completely deteriorate or be re-surfaced, but the parcours retains some 50km of cobbles, because they are what makes Paris-Roubaix so unique and unpredictable. A rider's position within the field going into the harsher sections is paramount to a safe exit at the other side. Tactically, the pavé can be like the mountains in stage race: a place where some riders go on the attack, and others strive to survive.

The first section is at Troisvilles (km 99), and the next 25 are peppered over the final 160 km, finishing with a short section entering the Roubaix Velodrome. The toughest sections are at Haveluy (2500m, km 158.3), Foret d'Arenberg (2400m, km 166.5), Auchy-Lez-Orchies à Bersee (2600m, km 207.6), Cysoing (1400m, km 235.8), Camphin-en-Pévèle (1800m, km 242), and Carrefour de l'Arbre (2100m, km 244.8).

The velodrome itself is another important feature of this race. After the riders have battered themselves half to death on the cobbles, they enter the smooth concrete velodrome in Roubaix and sprint it out over the final 500 metres, with a massive crowd on hand to cheer them at the finish. The atmosphere is unique, and many riders dream of entering the velodrome alone in the lead to savour the victory to its fullest. Few realise this dream, however.



Johan Museeuw
Photo © Sirotti
Click for larger image

This year's race contains four past winners, and another eight podium finishers, most of whom could be considered chances on Sunday. Reigning over them all is the Lion of Flanders, Johan Museeuw (Quick.Step-Davitamon), who has three victories to his credit including a very impressive solo win last year. Despite some health problems in recent weeks, Johan looks to be back at the right level to win Paris-Roubaix again, and for most he will be the outright favourite.

A strong team and a good director are also important for this race, and Museeuw has that in spades. Quick.Step director Patrick Lefevere has guided his riders to seven victories in the last eight years, including four 1-2-3 finishes (1996, 1998, 1999, 2001). He knows how to prepare a team for this race, and with riders like Servais Knaven (2001 winner), Tom Boonen (3rd last year), and Frank Vandenbroucke (2nd in the Ronde last weekend), he has an embarrassment of riches. If you were a betting fan, you would put your money on one of Lefevere's men.

The challengers to the crown are fewer this year, thanks to the withdrawal of Steffen Wesemann (Telekom), who crashed in the Ronde last Sunday and broke a rib. Also Ludo Dierckxsens (Landbouwkrediet), who broke his collarbone in Gent-Wevelgem, and George Hincapie (US Postal-Berry Floor), who is suffering from a sinus problem and is currently seeking a cure back home in the US.

Frederic Guesdon (FDJeux.com) surprised many when he won Roubaix in 1997, but since then has never achieved the same level of success. However the FDJeux.com leader rode well in the Ronde van Vlaanderen where he attacked at the foot of the Muur van Geraardsbergen to eventually finish sixth. He knows the pavé well, and will relish the opportunity on Sunday to attack it again. His team contains Jacky Durand, who will surely try and inveigle himself into the early break, and strongmen Bernhard Eisel and Christophe Mengin.

Peter van Petegem
Photo © Jeff Tse
Click for larger image

Ronde van Vlaanderen winner and World Cup leader Peter van Petegem (Lotto-Domo) has taken a break this week, choosing not to race Gent-Wevelgem in order to be fully fresh for Paris-Roubaix. Van Petegem finished second in this race in 2000, and says that he now has the hunger back to win these big races.

Team CSC will be lead by Andrea Tafi, the big Tuscan pavé specialist who finished third in 1996, second in 1998 and finally won in 1999. Tafi was a little off form in the Ronde, but team sources say he's been getting better and better this week, and really wants to do well in Roubaix. The team also contains Dutchman Tristan Hoffman, as well as Nicolas Jalabert and Paul Van Hyfte.

As previously mentioned, the US Postal presented by Berry Floor team will be without George Hincapie in his favourite classic, but is well stocked with big, strong riders such as Benoît Joachim, Pavel Padrnos, Guennadi Mikhailov and Steffen Kjaergaard. The team's leaders will be Viatcheslav Ekimov and Max Van Heeswijk, both of whom have the experience and the form to mix it up with the others in the lead.

Gianluca Bortolami
Photo © CN
Click for larger image

Caldirola-Sidermec will be spearheaded by Gianluca Bortolami, who was second in 1996, and Romans Vainsteins, third in 2001. The bright yellow colours will be easy to spot in the bunch, and it will be interesting to see whether Caldirola-Sidermec can mount a challenge to Lefevere.

Crédit Agricole will be relying on its Australian champion Stuart O'Grady, who has had a couple of top 20 finishes in Paris-Roubaix. O'Grady found his legs in the Ronde last week where he finished third, so can certainly be counted on the outsiders list in P-R this year.

Domina Vacanze-Elitron will be sans World Champion Mario Cipollini, who is a little out of sorts after pulling out of the Ronde and crashing in Gent-Wevelgem during the week. The Paris-Roubaix pavé might not be the best place to show off the all-white rainbow striped gear that Cipollini prefers to wear, and the big sprinter has never been a great fan of riding the Hell of the North.

Telekom has been a steady presence in the classics this year, but without Steffen Wesemann the magenta squad will struggle to do well. Erik Zabel has finished third here before however, and if he gets to the velodrome in the front group then the money will be on him.

The Cofidis crew is on home territory in the northern part of France, and certainly Nico Mattan will be looking to capitalise on his form that saw him take 5th in the Ronde. Mattan was on Museeuw's wheel when he attacked last year, and will try not to let the Lion get away this time. Also in the team are Jo Planckaert and Philippe Gaumont, the latter another strong rider who broke his leg on the Arenberg cobbles a couple of years ago.

Ag2r's Jaan Kirsipuu is another rider built for this race, although the solid Estonian sprinter has not placed on the podium yet. Trying to regain form after an illness last week, Kirsipuu is another outside chance.

Saeco's Dario Pieri is targeting the cobbled classics, without a great deal of success so far. He's got some form but hasn't been able to break into the top three yet. Perhaps Sunday is his day?

Finally, wily old Italian Fabio Baldato (Alessio) is another rider who has finished on the podium in Roubaix, placing second behind Tchmil in 1994. Baldato knows how to handle himself on the cobbles, and could be another rider for the top 10.


It should be a fast edition of Paris-Roubaix this year, with warm and sunny 18 degree conditions predicted, with a following south westerly wind. There will be a little rain in the days leading up to the race, so the famous Paris-Roubaix mud could well show itself on the riders' jerseys by the end of the day.

Live Coverage

Cyclingnews will be providing live coverage of the 101st Paris-Roubaix, from start to finish on Sunday. Coverage begins at 11:00 CEST/4:00am EST (America East Coast)/1:00am PST (America West Coast)/19:00 AEST (Australia East Coast). In addition, we'll be posting full results, report and photos right after the race.

Past winners

     First                         Second                        Third
2002 Johan Museeuw (Bel)           Steffen Wesemann (Ger)        Tom Boonen (Bel) 
2001 Servais Knaven (Ned)          Johan Museeuw (Bel)           Romans Vainsteins (Lat)
2000 Johan Museeuw (Bel)           Peter Van Petegem (Bel)       Erik Zabel (Ger)
1999 Andrea Tafi (Ita)             Wilfried Peeters (Bel)        Tom Steels (Bel)
1998 Franco Ballerini (Ita)        Andrea Tafi (Ita)             Wilfried Peeters (Bel)
1997 Frederic Guesdon (Fra)        Jo Planckaert (Bel)           Johan Museeuw (Bel)
1996 Johan Museeuw (Bel)           Gianluca Bortolami (Ita)      Andrea Tafi (Ita)
1995 Franco Ballerini (Ita)        Andrei Tchmil (Mol)           Johan Museeuw (Bel)
1994 Andrei Tchmil (Mol)           Fabio Baldato (Ita)           Franco Ballerini (Ita)
1993 Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra) Franco Ballerini (Ita)        Olaf Ludwig (Ger)
1992 Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra) Olaf Ludwig (Ger)             Johan Capiot (Bel)
1991 Marc Madiot (Fra)             Jean-Paul Colotti (Fra)       Carlo Bomans (Bel)
1990 Eddy Planckaert (Bel)         Steve Bauer (Can)             Edwig Van Hooydonck (Bel)
1989 Jean-Marie Wampers (Bel)      Dirk De Wolf (Bel)            Edwig Van Hooydonck (Bel)
1988 Dirk Demol (Bel)              Thomas Wegmuller (Swi)        Laurent Fignon(Fra)
1987 Eric Vanderaerden (Bel)       Patrick Versluys (Bel)        Rudy Dhaenens (Bel)
1986 Sean Kelly (Ier)              Rudy Dhaenens (Bel)           Adri Van der Poel (Ned)
1985 Marc Madiot (Fra)             B. Wojtinek (Fra)             Sean Kelly (Ire)
1984 Sean Kelly (Ire)              Rudy Rogiers (Bel)            Alain Bondue (Fra)
1983 Hennie Kuiper (Ned)           Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra) Francesco Moser (Ita)
1982 Jan Raas (Ned)                Yvon Bertin (Fra)             Greg Braun (Ger)
1981 Bernard Hinault (Fra)         Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Francesco Moser (Ita)
1980 Francesco Moser (Ita)         Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra) DietrichThureau (Ger)
1979 Francesco Moser (Ita)         Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Hennie Kuiper (Ned)
1978 Francesco Moser (Ita)         Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Jan Raas (Ned)
1977 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Willy Teirlinck (Bel)         Freddy Maertens (Bel)
1976 Marc Demeyer (Bel)            Francesco Moser (Ita)         Roger De Vlaeminck(Bel)
1975 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Eddy Merckx (Bel)             André Dierickx (Bel)
1974 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      Francesco Moser (Ita)         Marc Demeyer (Bel)
1973 Eddy Merckx (Bel)             Walter Godefroot (Bel)        Roger Rosiers (Bel)
1972 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)      André Dierickx (Bel)          Barry Hoban (GB)
1971 Roger Rosiers (Bel)           Herman Vanspringel (Bel)      Marino Basso (Ita)
1970 Eddy Merckx (Bel)             Erik De Vlaeminck (Bel)       Eric Leman (Bel)
1969 Walter Godefroot (Bel)        Eddy Merckx (Bel)             W. Vekemans (Bel)
1968 Eddy Merckx (Bel)             Herman Vanspringel (Bel)      Walter Godefroot (Bel)
1967 Jan Janssen (Ned)             Rik Van Looy (Bel)            Rudi Altig (Ger)
1966 Felice Gimondi (Ita)          Jan Janssens (Ned)            Gilbert Desmet (Bel)
1965 Rik Van Looy (Bel)            Edward Sels (Bel)             W. Vannitsen (Bel)
1964 Peter Post (Ned)              Benoni Beheydt (Bel)          Yvo Molenaers (Bel)
1963 Emile Daems (Bel)             Rik Van Looy (Bel)            Jan Janssen (Ned)
1962 Rik Van Looy (Bel)            Emile Daems (Bel)             Frans Schoubben (Bel)
1961 Rik Van Looy (Bel)            Marcel Janssens (Bel)         René Vanderveken (Bel)
1960 Pino Cerami (Bel)             Tino Sabbadini (Ita)          Miguel Poblet (Spa)
1959 Noel Fore (Bel)               Gilbert Desmet (Bel)          Marcel Janssens (Bel)
1958 Leon Van Daele (Bel)          Miguel Poblet (Spa)           Rik Van Looy (Bel)
1957 Alfred De Bruyne (Bel)        Rik Van Steenbergen (Bel)     Leon Van Daele (Bel)
1956 Louison Bobet (Fra)           Alfred De Bruyne (Bel)        Jean Forestier (Fra)
1955 Jean Forestier (Fra)          Fausti Coppi (Ita)            Louis Bobet (Fra)
1954 Raymond Impanis (Bel)         Stan Ockers (Bel)             M. Rijckaert (Bel)
1953 Germain Derycke (Bel)         Donato Piazza (Ita)           Wout Wagtmans (Ned)
1952 Rick van Steenbergen (Bel)    Fausto Coppi (Ita)            André Mahe (Fra)
1951 Antonio Bevilacqua (Ita)      Louison Bobet (Fra)           Rik Van Steenbergen (Bel)
1950 Fausto Coppi (Ita)            Maurice Diot (Fra)            Fiorenzo Magni (Ita)
1949 André Mahe (Fra) =1           Serse Coppi (Ita) =1          Frans Leenen (Bel)
1948 Rick van Steenbergen (Bel)    Emile Idee (Fra)              Georges Claes (Bel)
1947 Georges Claes (Bel)           Adolf Verschueren (Bel)       Louis Thiétard (Fra)
1946 Georges Claes (Bel)           Louis Gauthier (Fra)          Lucien Vlaemynck (Bel)
1945 Paul Maye (Fra)               Lucen Teisseire (Fra)         Kleber Piot (Bel)
1944 Maurice Desimpelaere (Bel)    Jules Rossi (Ita)             Louis Thiétard (Fra)
1943 Marcel Kint (Bel)             Jules Lowie (Bel)             Louis Thiétard (Fra)
1939 Emile Masson Jnr (Bel)        Marcel Kint (Bel)             Roger Lapebie (Fra)
1938 Lucien Storme (Bel)           Louis Hardiquest (Bel)        M. Van Houtte (Bel)
1937 Jules Rossi (Ita)             Albert Hendrickx (Bel)        Noël Declercq (Bel)
1936 Speicher (Fra)                Romain Maes (Bel)             Gaston Rebry (Bel)
1935 Gaston Rebry (Bel)            Andre Leducq (Fra)            Jean Aerts (Bel)
1934 Gaston Rebry (Bel)            Jean Wouters (Bel)            Frans Bonduel (Bel)
1933 Sylvere Maes (Bel)            Julien Vervaecke (Bel)        Léon Le Calvez (Fra)
1932 Romain Gyssels (Bel)          Georges Ronsse (Bel)          Herbert Sieronski (Ger)
1931 Gaston Rebry (Bel)            Charles Pelissier (Fra)       Emile Decroix (Bel)
1930 Julien Vervaecke (Bel)        Jean Marechal (Fra)           Antonin Magne (Fra)
1929 Charles Meunier (Bel)         Georges Ronsse (Bel)          Aimé Déolet (Bel)
1928 Andre Leducq (Fra)            Georges Ronsse (Bel)          Charler Meunier (Bel)
1927 Georges Ronsse (Bel)          Joseph Curtel (Fra)           Charles Pelissier (Fra)
1926 Julien Delbecque (Bel)        Gustaaf Van Slembroeck (Bel)  Gaston Rebry (Bel)
1925 Félix Sellier (Bel)           Piero Bestetti (Ita)          Jules Van Hevel (Bel)
1924 Jules Van Hevel (Bel)         Maurice Ville (Fra)           Félix Sellier (Bel)
1923 Henri Suter (Swi)             René Vermandel (Bel)          Félix Sellier (Bel)
1922 Albert Dejonghe (Bel)         Jean Rossius (Bel)            Emile Masson Snr (Bel)
1921 Henri Pelissier (Fra)         Francis Pelissier (Fra)       Léon Scieur (Bel)
1920 Paul Deman (Bel)              Eugené Christophe (Fra)       Leon Buysse (Bel)
1919 Henri Pelissier (Fra)         Philippe Thys (Bel)           Honoré Barthelemy (Fra)
1914 Charles Crupelandt (Fra)      Louis Luguet (Fra)            Louis Mottiat (Bel)
1913 François Faber (Lux)          Charles De Ruyter (Bel)       Charles Crupelandt (Fra)
1912 Charles Crupelandt (Fra)      Gustave Garrigou (Fra)        Maurice Leturgie (Fra)
1911 Octave Lapize (Fra)           Alphonse Charpiot (Fra)       Cyrille Van Hauwaert (Bel)
1910 Octave Lapize (Fra)           Cyrille Van Hauwaert (Bel)    Eugené Christophe (Fra)
1909 Octave Lapize (Fra)           Louis Trousselier (Fra)       Jules Masselis (Bel)
1908 Cyrille Van Hauwaert (Bel)    Georges Lorgeou (Fra)         François Faber (Lux)
1907 Georges Passerieu (Fra)       Cyrille Van Hauwaert (Bel)    Louis Trousselier (Fra)
1906 Henri Cornet (Fra)            Marcel Cadolle (Fra)          René Pottier (Fra)
1905 Louis Trousselier (Fra)       René Pottier (Fra)            Henri Cornet (Fra)
1904 Hippolyte Aucouturier (Fra)   Charles Garin (Fra)           Lucien Pothier (Fra)
1903 Hippolyte Aucouturier (Fra)   Claude Chapperon (Fra)        Louis Trousselier (Fra)
1902 Luc Lesna (Fra)               Edouard Wattelier (Fra)       A. Garin (Fra)
1901 Luc Lesna (Fra)               A. Garin (Fra)                Luc Itsweire (Fra)
1900 Emile Bouhours (Fra)          Josef Fischer (Ger)           Maurice Garin (Fra)
1899 Albert Champion (Fra)         Paul Bor (Fra)                A. Garin (Fra)
1898 Maurice Garin (Fra)           Etienne Stéphane (Fra)        Edouard Wattelier (Fra)
1897 Maurice Garin (Fra)           M. Cordang (Ned)              Michel Frederic (Swi)
1896 Josef Fischer (Ger)           C. Meyer (Den)                Maurice Garin (Fra)

Winning distances & average speeds
2002 Johan Museeuw (Bel)                     261 km  (39.35 km/h)
2001 Servais Knaven (Ned)                    254.5 km (39.19km/h)
2000 Johan Museeuw (Bel)                     273 km (40.172 km/h)
1999 Andrea Tafi (Ita)                       273 km (40.519 km/h)
1998 Franco Ballerini (Ita)                  267 km (38.270 km/h)
1997 Frédéric Guesdon (Fra)                  267 km (40.280 km/h)
1996 Johan Museeuw (Bel)                     262 km (43.310 km/h)
1995 Franco Ballerini (Ita)                  266 km (41.303 km/h)
1994 Andreï Tchmil (Mda)                     270 km (36.160 km/h)
1993 Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra)           267 km (41.652 km/h)
1992 Gilbert Duclos-Lassalle (Fra)           267 km (41.480 km/h)
1991 Marc Madiot (Fra)                       266 km (37.332 km/h)
1990 Eddy Planckaert (Bel)                   265 km (34.855 km/h)
1989 Jean-Marie Wampers (Bel)                265 km (39.164 km/h)
1988 Dirk De Mol (Bel)                       266 km (40.324 km/h)
1987 Eric Vanderaerden (Bel)                 264 km (36.982 km/h)
1986 Sean Kelly (Ire)                        268 km (39.374 km/h)
1985 Marc Madiot (Fra)                       265 km (36.109 km/h)
1984 Sean Kelly (Ire)                        265 km (36.074 km/h)
1983 Hennie Kuiper (Ned)                     274 km (40.308 km/h)
1982 Jan Raas (Ned)                          270 km (36.733 km/h)
1981 Bernard Hinault (Fra)                   263 km (40.868 km/h)
1980 Francesco Moser (Ita)                   264 km (43.106 km/h)
1979 Francesco Moser (Ita)                   259 km (41.010 km/h)
1978 Francesco Moser (Ita)                   263 km (36.494 km/h)
1977 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)                250 km (40.464 km/h)
1976 Marc De Meyer (Bel)                     279 km (40.811 km/h)
1975 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)                277 km (40.406 km/h)
1974 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)                274 km (37.567 km/h)
1973 Eddy Merckx (Bel)                       272 km (36.370 km/h)
1972 Roger De Vlaeminck (Bel)                272 km (36.709 km/h)
1971 Roger Rosiers (Bel)                     266 km (42.108 km/h)
1970 Eddy Merckx (Bel)                       266 km (41.644 km/h)
1969 Walter Godefroot (Bel)                  264 km (38.939 km/h)
1968 Eddy Merckx (Bel)                       262 km (36.606 km/h)
1967 Jan Janssen (Ned)                       263 km (36.824 km/h)
1966 Felice Gimondi (Ita)                    262 km (37.546 km/h)
1965 Rik Van Looy (Bel)                      267 km (41.847 km/h)
1964 Peter Post (Ned)                        265 km (45.129 km/h)
1963 Emile Daems (Bel)                       266 km (37.681 km/h)
1962 Rik Van Looy (Bel)                      258 km (38.321 km/h)
1961 Rik Van Looy (Bel)                      263 km (41.700 km/h)
1960 Pino Cerami (Bel)                       262 km (43.538 km/h)
1959 Noël Fore (Bel)                         262 km (42.760 km/h)
1958 Léon Van DaelE (Bel)                    269 km (33.300 km/h)
1957 Fred De Bruyne (Bel)                    252 km (34.738 km/h)
1956 Louison Bobet (Fra)                     252 km (41.831 km/h)
1955 Jean Forestier (Fra)                    249 km (40.741 km/h)
1954 Raymond Impanis (Bel)                   246 km (35.590 km/h)
1953 Germain Derycke (Bel)                   245 km (43.522 km/h)
1952 Rik Van Steenbergen (Bel)               245 km (41.938 km/h)
1951 Antonio Bevilacqua (Ita)                247 km (40.355 km/h)
1950 Fausto Coppi (Ita)                      247 km (39.123 km/h)
1949 André Mahe (Fra) and Serse Coppi (Ita)  244 km (39.356 km/h)
1948 Rik Van Steenbergen (Bel)               246 km (43.612 km/h)
1947 Georges Claes (Bel)                     246 km (39.831 km/h)
1946 Georges Claes (Bel)                     246 km (34.055 km/h)
1945 Paul Maye (Fra)                         246 km (31.212 km/h)
1944 Maurice De Simpelaere (Bel)             246 km (39.897 km/h)
1943 Marcel Kint (Bel)                       250 km (41.822 km/h)
1939 Emile Masson (Bel)                      262 km (35.934 km/h)
1938 Lucien Storme (Bel)                     255 km (30.936 km/h)
1937 Jules Rossi (Ita)                       255 km (34.935 km/h)
1936 Georges Speicher (Fra)                  262 km (36.137 km/h)
1935 Gaston Rebry (Bel)                      255 km (37.363 km/h)
1934 Gaston Rebry (Bel)                      255 km (32.415 km/h)
1933 Sylvère Maes (Bel)                      255 km (36.523 km/h)
1932 Romain Gijssels (Bel)                   255 km (37.320 km/h)
1931 Gaston Rebry (Bel)                      255 km (36.342 km/h)
1930 Julien Vervaecke (Bel)                  255 km (31.146 km/h)
1929 Charles Meunier (Bel)                   260 km (29.168 km/h)
1928 André Leducq (Fra)                      260 km (33.597 km/h)
1927 Georges ronsse (Bel)                    260 km (30.449 km/h)
1926 Julien Delbecque (Bel)                  270 km (31.962 km/h)
1925 Felix Sellier (Bel)                     260 km (28.031 km/h)
1924 Jules Van Hevel (Bel)                   270 km (25.962 km/h)
1923 Henri Suter (Swi)                       270 km (30.098 km/h)
1922 Albert DeJonghe (Bel)                   262 km (34.690 km/h)
1921 Henri Pelissier (Fra)                   263 km (29.068 km/h)
1920 Paul Deman (Bel)                        263 km (24.377 km/h)
1919 Henri Pelissier (Fra)                   280 km (22.857 km/h)
1914 Charles Crupelandt (Fra)                274 km (30.332 km/h)
1913 François Faber (Lux)                    265 km (35.333 km/h)
1912 Charles Crupelandt (Fra)                266 km (31.294 km/h)
1911 Octave Lapize (Fra)                     266 km (31.345 km/h)
1910 Octave Lapize (Fra)                     266 km (29.274 km/h)
1909 Octave Lapize (Fra)                     276 km (30.469 km/h)
1908 Cyrille Van Hauwaert (Bel)              271 km (25.630 km/h)
1907 Georges Passerieu (Fra)                 270 km (30.971 km/h)
1906 Henri Cornet (Fra)                      270 km (27.034 km/h)
1905 Louis Trousselier (Fra)                 268 km (33.206 km/h)
1904 Hippolyte Aucouturier (Fra)             268 km (32.518 km/h)
1903 Hippolyte Aucouturier (Fra)             268 km (29.104 km/h)
1902 Lucien Lesna (Fra)                      268 km (28.088 km/h)
1901 Lucien Lesna (Fra)                      280 km (25.861 km/h)
1900 Emile Bouhours (Fra)                    268 km (37.352 km/h)
1899 Albert Champion (Fra)                   268 km (31.976 km/h)
1898 Maurice Garin (Fra)                     268 km (32.599 km/h)
1897 Maurice Garin (Fra)                     280 km (28.124 km/h)
1896 Josef Fischer (Ger)                     280 km (30.162 km/h)