dylan van baarle
The 2021 edition of Paris-Roubaix took place in October, featuring extremely muddy Autumn conditions whilst the 2022 edition in its normal Spring slot was bone dry. This year's race was the fastest ever edition of the race, won by INEOS classics specialist Dylan van Baarle. After the big win, the Dutch rider surprisingly uploaded all of his data on Strava, including power and heart rate, which he usually hides. Let's look deeper into what it took to win the fastest Paris-Roubaix ever and how that compares to the wet edition of last year.
It will be hard to beat the hot and dry Paris-Roubaix 2022, in our view the most exciting race of 2022 so far. INEOS made the race very hard from the beginning, putting pressure on big favourites Van Aert and Van der Poel, who were sleeping in the peloton, while the big split happened in the crosswinds. Everything came back together and in the end only the strongest riders made the split after Jumbo-Visma's acceleration with just over 50km to go. Dylan van Baarle was once again left to bridge to a dangerous move, joining Mohoric and Lampaert then dropping them, giving INEOS the first Paris-Roubaix victory in the team's history. This was also the fastest ever edition of the legendary race, where so many things happened that it is worth watching almost from the beginning.
Ronde van Vlaanderen 2022 did not disappoint despite the absence of Belgian champion Wout van Aert. Tadej Pogačar is not a regular Tour de France champion, who just targets one big race a year, with the Slovenian showing his punch on the short Belgian cobble climbs, creating multiple splits throughout the day. Only Mathieu van der Poel could hold his wheel in the finale as the race ended with a sprint from a standing position between the Dutchman and Slovenian. As Van der Poel and the Slovene finessed, Maduoas and van Baarle returned from behind, boxing in Pogačar in the last 200 metres, whilst van der Poel opened up a huge sprint to win his second Ronde van Vlaanderen. The frustrated Pogačar only finished 4th as he was surpassed by Dylan van Baarle and Valentin Madouas who took podium honours.