Date: Saturday April 4 (women), Sunday April 9 (men), 2023
Start: Compiègne (men), Denain (women)
Total distance: 257km (men), 145km (women)
Teams: 25 (men), 24 (women)
Defending champion: Dylan van Baarle (Jumbo-Visma), Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo)
Paris-Roubaix is one of the oldest races in men’s professional cycling and is one of cycling’s five legendary Monuments. Riders first tackled the infamous cobbled roads of northern France in 1896, and this year will be the 120th edition. It will be held the day after the third edition of the women’s race on Sunday April 9, 2023.
Paris-Roubaix has aptly been nicknamed the Hell of the North, a Sunday in Hell and the Queen of the Classics in its past. The parcours is brutal and often leaves riders covered in dust, mud, and grit alongside their own sweat and tears as it’s one of the toughest races to finish in all of cycling.
The reputation of the race is such that just reaching the velodrome within the time limit can make a rider's career, while some are lucky enough to take a podium or a victory and etch their name in the history of cycling forever. Of course, there are those that transcend the abilities of an average rider and garner multiple victories over the course of their careers. That illustrious list includes household names like Rik Van Looy, Eddy Merckx, Roger De Vlaeminck, Francesco Moser, Sean Kelly, Johan Museeuw, Tom Boonen, and Fabian Cancellara, among others.
De Vlaeminck and Boonen are perhaps the finest over the French cobbles, each arriving at the famous Roubaix Velodrome as champion on a record four occasions. The Belgians have been the best at Roubaix for men throughout history as six separate riders have won the fabled Monument more than three times. Despite this, they Belgians have only managed second in the last two editions with Sonny Colbrelli and Dylan van Baarle the last two winners.
Men's Paris-Roubaix 2023 team list:
- AG2R Citroën Team
- Astana Qazaqstan Team
- EF Education-EasyPost
- Ineos Grenadiers
- Soudal Quick-Step
- Team Arkea-Samsic
- Bahrain Victorious
- Team DSM
- Jayco AlUla
- UAE Team Emirates
- Lotto Dstny
- Israel Premier Tech
- Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB
- Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team
- Team Flanders-Baloise
- Uno-X Pro Cycling Team
Men's Paris-Roubaix 2023 route:
The men will face a total distance of 257km which will include 55km of cobblestones in 29 sectors. They will arrive at the first section of pavè in Troisvilles, just under 100 kilometres after the start in Compiègne. With 40 more kilometres in the legs and the cobbles appearing thick and fast, the riders will be greeted by the return of Haspres as sector 21. The 1.7km section hasn’t been seen in the race since Magnus Bäckstedt conquered the cobbles in 2004.
Once again the trio of famous five-star cobbled sections – the Trouée d'Arenberg, Mons-en-Pévèle and the Carrefour de l'Arbre – will rear their ugly heads. The first of these is a 2.3km section of poorly placed, dangerous cobbles through Trouée d'Arenberg (sector 19) – the forest of Arenberg. It comes much earlier in the race, around 100km from the finish. The Mons-en-Pévèle (sector 11) appears with less than 50km remaining, and this sector can often draw out the group from which the winner will emerge.
2023 men's Paris-Roubaix route (Image by Paris-Roubaix)
The final arena for solo, decisive moves tends to come on the four-star Camphin-en-Pévèle (sector five) and the five-star Carrefour de l’Arbre (sector four). Both these sectors appear within a kilometre of each other and less than 20km from the velodrome in Roubaix, and can make or break the fortunes of the riders at the front of the race.
Once the riders arrive in the velodrome they will complete the traditional lap-and-a-half before the winner can celebrate amongst the roar of the crowd.
The women’s peloton had to see 117 editions of the men's race go by before they got their own chance to race on the pavè. The third edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes will be held on Saturday April 8, 2023.
They complete a similar but shorter route to the men, including the five-star sectors Mons-en–Pévèle and Carrefour de l’Arbre. The first edition of the Paris-Roubaix Femmes was especially wet, chaotic, full of crashes, and extremely fitting of the race's nicknames.
The women’s race has a short history in which Trek-Segafredo have dominated with two solo wins – Lizzie Deignan in the inaugural edition and Elisa Longo Borghini last year. The American team have also finished with three riders in the top 10 at the 2021 and 2022 edition of the race, so have serious depth in their ranks.
Longo Borghini has had a strong start to 2023, taking the queen stage and overall general classification at the inaugural Women's UAE Tour. Trek-Segafredo are yet to confirm a team for Paris-Roubaix yet, but with Lucinda Branda and Shiring van Anrooij also on their squad for 2023 we expect them to arrive at the start with a team able to win Paris-Roubaix Femmes for the third year running.
Paris-Roubaix Femmes 2023 teams:
- Canyon//SRAM Racing
- EF Education-Tibco-SVB
- Human Powered Health
- Israel Premier Tech Roland
- Liv Racing TeqFind
- Team DSM
- Jayco Alula
- Team SD Worx
- UAE Team ADQ
- Uno-X Pro Cycling Team
- Ceratizit-WNT Pro Cycling Team
- Lifeplus Wahoo
- AG Insurance – Soudal Quick-Step Team
- Arkéa Pro Cycling Team
- Cofidis Women Team
- Parkhotel Valkenburg
- St Michel-Mavic-Auber 93
- Stade Rochelais Charente Maritime
- ZAAF Cycling Team
Paris-Roubaix Femmes 2023 route:
The third edition of the women’s race sees an extended 145km route again, starting in Denain before finishing at the velodrome in Roubaix. The extra 20km comes before the first cobblestones with two laps of windswept roads near the beginning of the course.
Hornaing is the first of 17 pavè sections, with a total of 29.2km of cobblestones on the parcours for the race. To our disappointment, there is still no sign of the Trouée d'Arenberg on the women’s route but there is still the duo of other five-star sectors – Mons-en-Pévèle and the Carrefour de l'Arbre.
Women's 2023 Paris-Roubaix route (Image by Paris-Roubaix)
In both of the previous editions, Deignan and Longo Borghini have been solo on the Carrefour de l'Arbre, so someone would have to buck the trend for us to see a closer fight on that section this year. The women’s race also finishes at the famous Roubaix Velodrome.
Where to watch Paris-Roubaix and Paris-Roubaix Femmes 2023:
Coverage of Paris-Roubaix and Paris-Roubaix Femmes will be streamed live on GCN+ for those watching from the UK and Europe. If you do not have the time to tune in live, GCN+ also offers a full race replay.
Eurosport and Discovery+ will also be covering the race live. If you have a SkyQ, Sky Stream and Sky Glass subscription, you are now able to sign up to Discovery+ for free as part of your package.