06.04.2024 , ,


The fourth edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes avec Zwift was another thrilling battle. Strong winds caused havoc in the early part of the race, but in the end, it came down to six riders sprinting on the iconic Roubaix velodrome for the victory. The race was won by road world champion Lotte Kopecky. Elise Chabbey and Zoe Bäckstedt were in the second group and sprinted to 11th and 16th place, respectively.


Elise Chabbey: “It was hectic from the start, mainly because of the wind. The fight to be on the front in the first sectors was hard, and we couldn’t find each other as a team as we wanted. I could hold a good position and fought for every cobble sector. When Tiffany came back into the front group, that helped Zoe and myself with positioning. Even still, I spent a lot of energy and missed endurance at the end of the race. When Kopecky attacked the last time, I couldn’t go with it. I’m not happy with the eleventh place, but considering the classic races were a question mark for me at the start of the season because of my knee injury in winter and my late start to training, I know I can still get into better shape.”

Zoe Bäckstedt: “I’m super happy with it. I really didn’t expect to be in the front group at all. I was thinking that top 40 would be good. After the third or fourth sector I was just hanging on but I was able to fight and close the gap to the front group. I pushed as hard as I could all day from that point. I’m so tired now it’s hard to put into words how my body feels. I don’t know if I want to sit, lie down, drink, eat or what. But I’m chuffed with the race.”

Alice Towers: “Coming into my second Paris-Roubaix Femmes avec Zwift, I felt a lot calmer. We had done two recons and tested the equipment, had a good overview of the parcours, and obviously, I had racing experience in 2023. The hype for the race was as I expected. As one of the biggest races on the calendar, there was a lot of excitement and nerves.

I had a disappointing day. It’s not a race where you can get away with not being 100%, but as always in Roubaix, you can’t give up until you reach the velodrome. We were riding strong in the front of the race with Zoe, Elise and Tiff, and they did a great job of flying the CANYON//SRAM flag at the front of the race.”

Tiffany Cromwell: “It was as chaotic as expected. I had some lady luck on my side so I avoided all crashes and had as smooth as possible run as you can get at Roubaix. I was sick after Flanders, so I wasn’t 100% sure how I would be. I suffered a tiny bit with that but was happy with my race as a whole. I was with Soraya and Zoe a lot on the local lap, which was good. Soraya had a rough day with her bike and a puncture right before the first sector. She fought hard but couldn’t come back, and we were confident that she could have played a role in that front group if she had had the chance.”

“After the first sectors, when I came back to the front group, I made the call that I wasn’t 100%, so I gave everything to work for Elise and Zoe because they were much stronger. Zoe and Elise tried their best but couldn’t go with the final group of six. We had three in the front group to show the strength and skills we have, and there are a few things to keep working on to reach the win at Roubaix.”

Soraya Paladin: “I was a bit nervous before the start and scared because everyone described this race as the most hectic and brutal of the season. In the end, it’s true, but it’s because of this that it’s so special. Now that I’ve done this race, I have experienced the magic feeling. You start preparing much earlier by testing materials, tyres, and tyre pressure, and you hope to have the best setup possible for the conditions on the day. Then, during the race, it’s like a battle; you need to fight and to be the first one, everything has to be perfect.

“I want to come back, even if my race was unlucky today. I was suffering a lot to come back to the front group and thought the suffering was for nothing because my race was done, but I changed my mind when I entered the velodrome. It’s hard to describe, but it’s something unique, and when you are there, you forget about the pain. You are proud to make it to the velodrome. I can’t imagine how it will be to have a good result there.”


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