All contribute to the success of this 105th edition
The very words, Paris-Roubaix, provoke in me the thrill of an extraordinary, ruthless competition, but so very sought-after by the champions.
Paris-Roubaix is not an ordinary cycling race; it figures high on the list of great monuments in world sport. It is precisely because it is not an ordinary race that we take the greatest possible care in preserving it.
And all of the North has joined us in this venture.
The Region, which joins us this year as a partner, the Department, the District Council, the towns crossed, the Horticultural Schools and the Friends of Paris-Roubaix, all contribute to the success of this 105th edition.
On the Saturday in Compiègne, and on the Sunday morning at the start, the excitement and the festive atmosphere are tangible. It is a day for gathering together around the rough values of cycling, in a region where all are familiar with the high stakes. They are present, the People of the North, admiring, happy and hearty.
The route of the 2007 edition will include fifty or so kilometres of cobblestone sections, with a new section, between Beuvry-la-Forêt and Orchies, to be discovered by the riders in the final stretch of the race. Fabian Cancellara, the Swiss rider and 2006 titleholder, will have his sights set on a double win but he will face opposition from Flemish riders, Italians and why not French riders, who all dream of adding their names to the prize list of the greatest of the Classics.
And so, we look forward to seeing you on the 15th of April, a Sunday when a sport and a region can be similarly proud.