RESULT: 1 Cancellara, 2 Vanmarcke, 3 Terpstra +31, 4 van Avermaet +31, 5 Gaudin +31, 6 Stybar +39, 7 Langeveld +39, 8 Flecha +39, 9 Kristoff +50, 10 Turgot +50
RESULT: 1 Cancellara, 2 Vanmarcke, 3 Terpstra +31, 4 van Avermaet +31, 5 Gaudin +31, 6 Stybar +39, 7 Langeveld +39, 8 Flecha +39, 9 Kristoff +50, 10 Turgot +50
Niki Terpstra takes third. Spartacus won by a bike's length.
FABIAN CANCELLARA WINS PARIS-ROUBAIX! It ends up as a track sprint with both men looking at each other, high on the banking, before the Swiss comes around the outside on the final bend to take the victory.
Vanmarcke and Cancellara come into the Velodrome together. Who is your money on?
Stybar and Flecha have been caught by the group of chasers. Six or so riders will battle for the final podium spot. The two leaders are having a chat, no more attacks.
Cancellara has a dig but Vanmarcke responds. Are we about to see the first fight for the win in Roubaix Velodrome since 2008?
Vanmarcke has only won one professional race - Het Nieuwsblad last year.
Flecha has caught Stybar.
Just a 300m section of cobbles in the town of Roubaix to come. The two leaders have a one minute lead on Stybar who is 20 seconds ahead of the next chase group.
Big effort from Vanmarcke but the Swiss is able to sit on the wheel of the Belgian.
Vanmarcke hits the front as they reach the cobbles at Hem.
Cancellara and Vanmarcke extend their advantage to 44 seconds.
Sector 2 at Willems à Hem is 1.4km long.
Just two minor cobbled sections to come and Stybar is marooned in third, 30 seconds back.
Stybar has to take his foot out of the pedal after going too hard at a corner and he is now 23 seconds back.
Cancellara and Vanmarcke with 10 seconds on the Czech heading into sector 3 (Gruson - 1100m - ++).
Now Stybar hits a fan on the roadside and loses contact with the two leaders. The cyclo-crosser didn't go down but lost valuable time!
Cancellara eats a gel before Carrefour de l'Arbre and is sitting on Vanmarcke's wheel. Stybar is there too but Vandenbergh hits a fan and is down on the ground!
Vanmarcke heads the four leaders through that four-star sector. The 2.1km long sector 4 of Le Carrefour de l'Arbre which is five-star rated is just around the corner. Will Cancellara attack? They are 38 seconds ahead.
Cancellara and Stybar catch Vandenbergh and Vanmarcke ahead of sector 5 of Camphin-en-Pévèle.
Cancellara has attacked. Only Paris-Roubaix debutant Stybar can keep on his wheel and they are in pursuit of the two leaders. 20 seconds is the deficit.
Is Cancellara going to make his move on the next pivotal four-star rated section of cobbles or does he not have it in his legs today? Flecha is increasing the pressure before Gaudin attacks but they are 35 seconds behind the two Belgians; Stijn Vandenbergh (Omega Pharma Quick Step) and Sep Vanmarcke (Blanco). Paolini punctures.
Terpstra has also made contact with the Cancellara group but Vandenbergh and Vanmarcke have timed their attack well and opened up a 35 second lead at the end of sector 6.
Was Cancellara bluffing? He has bridged the gap to the eight leaders in super quick time. New front group: Gaudin, Flecha, Langeveld, Paolini, Stybar, Van Avermaet, Vandenbergh, Vanmarcke and CANCELLARA. But just as the Swiss looks to make contact off go Vandenbergh and Vanmarcke,
Through sector 7 and Vanmarcke, Langeveld, Gaudin and Vandenbergh have been caught by Flecha, Paolini, Van Avermaet and Stybar with 15 seconds back to Cancellara, Terpstra, Eisel and Boom. Chavanel in group three.
Cancellara goes back to the team car and could be in trouble. He is in a four-man chase group which is the third on the road. There are two groups of four ahead of the Swiss.
Sep Vanmarcke, Langeveld, Gaudin and Vandenbergh lead by 15 seconds. Flecha and Van Avermaet trying to make the jump to the leaders.
Mechanical for Chavanel ahead of sector 8 (Pont-Thibaut - 1400m - +++). Vandenbergh goes again and there are four riders off the front and Cancellara is not one of them.
Sebastien Turgot was in the lead group but needs a new rare wheel and is back in the bunch. 12 men out ahead with Stijn Vandenbergh setting the pace. Lars Boom and Gaudin are also in the lead dozen.
Has the selection been made on sector 10? 13 riders including Cancellara, Chavanel, Paolini, Kristoff, Eisel, Langeveld, Vandenbergh, Terpstra and Haussler in a front group as they head to sector 9 (Mérignies - Avelin - 700m - ++). Boasson Hagen and Hushovd both dropped.
On sector 10 (Mons-en-Pévèle - 3000m - ++++) and the four leaders are caught. Niki Terpstra and Lars Boom are hammering away at the front then Juan Antonio Flecha accelerates. Johan Van Summeren has punctured.
Damien Gaudin knows Paris-Roubaix well after winning the under-23 race in 2007 and has joined the three leaders. But the burst of speed from Cancellara means the four men out in front are in sight of the main bunch. Attacks everywhere now.
Cancellara now pushing the pace on the front of the peloton. Chavanel rides the middle of the cobbles to get to his wheel.
William Bonnet, Martin Elmiger, Ian Stannard, Jacopo Guarnieri and Matti Breschel have attacked the peloton before sector 11.
Schar joins the two leaders on the exit of sector 12 as they head into a serious piece of pave, sector 11 (Auchy-lez-Orchies - Bersée - 2600m - ++++). Gaudin between the leaders and peloton which has dropped O'Grady. Ladagnous has abandoned.
O'Grady has been swallowed up by the peloton. Steegmans and Hayman leads Schar by 25 seconds with the bunch 40 seconds further back, heading to - sector 12 (Orchies - 1700m - +++). Europcar's Damien Gaudin is the latest man to try and bridge the gap as Ladagnous hits the deck once again after an Euskaltel rider brings three down after clipping the curb.
Schar has dropped O'Grady and is chasing Steegmans and Hayman going into sector 13 (Beuvry-la-Forêt - Orchies - 1400m - +++) with the Radioshack-led peloton 1:15 behind the two leaders. Hushovd has had yet another puncture but is back in the peloton. Meanwhile, Dane Mads Pedersen wins the under-23 race ahead of Nathan Van Hooydonck and Britain's Tao Geoghegan Hart.
Sector 15 and a big pile-up in the middle of the peloton. Riders in the ditch and Geraint Thomas, Matthieu Ladagnous, Filippo Pozzato and Borut Bozic are amongst those on the ground. Steegmans and Hayman are leading the way while O’Grady and Schaer are sandwiched between the leaders and the peloton after Koretzky suffers a puncture.
BMC's Michael Schar aims to make the jump to the front group on sector 16, Hornaing - Wandignies-Hamage, which is a 3.7km long and three-star rated. Steegmans and Hayman have gone clear at the front and extended their lead to 50 seconds as the peloton slow down through the feed zone.
Robert Wagner (BLA), Wiliam Bonnet (FDJ), Jens Keukelere (OGE), Marco Bandiera (IAM), Kristjian Koren (CAN) and Adrien Petit (COF) had a few seconds on the peloton but have sat up. The break has a 10 second lead on the long cobbled sector 16.
After the Trouée d'Arenberg about 15 riders were a bit ahead but no single team really putting the pressure on at the front of the peloton on the flat and I guess there is a group of about 70 riders. The four leaders have a lead of 20 seconds after going through sector 17.
Philippe Gaumont broke his femur in 2001 after falling at the start of the Trouée when leading the peloton. No such incidents this year but Geraint Thomas finds himself in the mud at the side of the road. Taylor Phinney of BMC leads the main bunch and make serious inroads into the lead of the escapees which is down to 37 seconds.
Greipel has been caught by the peloton ahead of the Arenberg. The four leaders go into sector 18 with an advantage of 1:30. Zakari Dempster (Netapp) crashed and seems to have broken his collarbone while Thor Hushovd has a mechanical at the worst possible time.
O'Grady on Arenberg: "Even though it’s far from the finish, it’s one of the most decisive parts of the race. Mostly, it’s about damage control. Before entering the forest, it is absolutely imperative to be at the front. Over the cobbles each rider that is in front of you must be looked at as an object. That rider can have a puncture or a crash or drop a water bottle or a chain and all of a sudden, this object is now an obstacle. Every water bottle that is dropped is like a grenade."
Andre Greipel (Lotto) is now chasing behind the four escapees and trails by 75 seconds heading into sector 19. No pace in the peloton and the leaders have opened up a 2:10 lead.
The pace is picking up as we head towards sector 18, the Trouée d'Arenberg. It has become the symbol of Paris–Roubaix. Officially 'La Drève des Boules d'Herin', the 2400m of cobbles were laid in the time of Napoleon. Until 1998 the entry to the Arenberg pavé was slightly downhill, leading to a sprint for best position but the route was reversed after Johan Museeuw's crash in 1998. The cobbles are extremely difficult because of their irregularity. Steegmans/Hayman/O'Grady/Koretzky lead by 1:20.
2007 winner Stuart O’Grady is looking to become the oldest winner of the race at 39. He and his fellow three leaders have an advantage of 50 seconds over the peloton which once again includes Sky's Stannard. Yaroslav Popovych of Radioshack riding on the front of the main bunch but Offredo has abandoned.
Yoann Offredo has just had a big crash. He was not looking where he was going and the FDJ rider hits a traffic island and somersaults over his handlebars. Out on sector 21 and the four-man lead group has established a 35 second lead.
The Thomas group has been caught but Team Sky are back on the attack, this time with Matthew Hayman while fellow Aussie O'Grady is there again. The active Koretzky is also present plus OPQS' Gert Steegmans.
Geraint Thomas, Edvald Boasson-Hagen and 39-year-old former champion Stuart O’Grady in a 12-man lead group that has a small lead over the peloton which is being led by Radioshack.
The race is beginning to hot up so a brief mention of other riders to look out for. Sep Vanmarcke, Lars Boom, Luca Paolini, Alexander Kristoff, Filippo Pozzato, Jurgen Roelandts, Andre Greipe, Heinrich Haussler, Sebastian Turgot, Juan Antonio Flecha and John Degenkolb will all look to contest at the business end. There is no Peter Sagan in this race, he closed his cobbled classics campaign with a second-place finish at Ronde van Vlaanderen.
The peloton is still packed as the race goes through sector 24. Geraint Thomas is at the very front while Team Sky team-mate Ian Stannard is off the back with cuts all down his right.
Stijn Vandenbergh (OPQ), Marcel Sieberg (LTB) and Bert De Backer (VCD) broke clear on the first cobbled sector (#27) in Troisvilles where Ian Stannard had a puncture. Several riders have been involved in a crash in sector #26.
When Van Summeren won in 2011, he soloed to victory having survived from an early breakaway. He was 20th in Flanders while team-mate Tyler Farrar finished in sixth place in the Scheldeprijs on Wednesday. Garmin Sharp's sports director Geert Van Bondt said: "I think Van Summeren's on the level where he wants to be and he has a lot of confidence for Sunday."
There are three former champions in the field and one is Johan Vansummeren, who won the race in 2011. Belgium are the most successful nation in the race with 55 wins (France follows with 28) and after Boonen's win last year, Belgium are aiming to win this race three years in a row for the first time since 1989 when Jean-Marie Wampers won after Eric Vanderaerden (1987) and Dirk Demol (1988) were victorious in the years previously.
44.5 kilometres have been covered in the second hour of the race and the average speed since the start is 47kph. The peloton look to set tackle the first cobbled sector together.
The last two escapees have been caught and now it is another rider from the wild card team Bretagne-Seche, Benoit Jarrier, who is looking to escape before we reach the first cobbled section.
Directeur sportif and former champion Servis Knaven said of the Sky team tactics: "Cancellara will be the favourite again. You must not wait until Carrefour de l'Arbre [sector] or maybe a few sections before. If you are with him, maybe you can follow him, but looking at Sunday, it could be that you have to race for second.”
Team Sky have multiple options. Bernhard Eisel has two top 10s in this race, Edvald Boasson Hagen is a former winner of Gent-Wevelgem and finished ninth at Harelbeke while Matthew Hayman was eighth last year. Geraint Thomas and Ian Stannard are the Brits who can challenge. Essex's Stannard is a powerhouse who was sixth in Milan-San Remo while Welsh Olympic champion Thomas was fourth at Harelbeke and had his bid last week disrupted by a mechanical problem.
BMC have a strong line-up. Thor Hushovd, second in 2010 and third in 2009, will make his 10th start and headlines their team. Taylor Phinney, a two-time winner of the under-23 version of the race in 2009 and 2010, can offer a 1-2 punch. The American finished 15th in his first appearance last year. Greg Van Avermaet was third at Gent-Wevelgem and seventh in Ronde van Vlaanderen so can not be discounted.
Only two riders are now left in the lead: Frederik Veuchelen and Clement Koretsky. Argos, Netapp and Cofidis have done a lot of work in the chase.
With defending champion Tom Boonen out with injury, Omega Pharma-QuickStep will be led by Sylvain Chavanel. He is coming off a second consecutive victory in the Driedaagse De Panne, was 13th in Flanders last week and was eighth in this event in 2009. Chavanel, who also won a stage ar Paris-Nice in Match, is aiming to be the first French Roubaix champion in 16 years. Dutch champion Niki Terpstra had a bad time in Flanders but the team hope he will be able to support.
Siskevicius, Teruel and Lemontagner have been dropped from the break. 10 men in the lead with a 20 seconds lead over the peloton.
But the RadioShack-Leopard star had a midweek crash in the Scheldeprijs and also fell in a reconnaissance ride for this race. Cancellara was unable to compete here last year after he fractured his collarbone in the Ronde van Vlaanderen after an errant water bottle sent him flying. RadioShack manager Luca Guercilena said of Wednesday's crash: "It’s not really a bad injury, but it’s not ideal to arrive in Roubaix like this."
So what of the race favourites? Fabian Cancellara can become the ninth rider to win this race at least three times and aims to become the second rider to win the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix in the same year twice. He achieved this in 2010. Spartacus can win his fifth cobblestone classic which would equal Roger De Vlaeminck, Rik Van Looy, and Eddy Merckx. Only Johan Museeuw (6) and Tom Boonen (7) have more.
First hour of racing and the average speed was 49.5km/h. Rapid!
The Mons-en-Pevele, inside the final 50km, should slim the selection even further before the often decisive Camphin-en-Pevele and Le Carrefour de l’Arbre - numbers five and four of the cobbles respectively. Then three low-difficulty sections of cobbles follow on the 16km run-in to the finish before one-and-a-half laps of the velodrome in Roubaix.
The escape group may be alllowed to form a lead as the first of the most difficult five-star cobbled sections and the most famous, the Trouee d’Arenberg, comes with 96.5km remaining. All the race favourites will look to be at the front of the bunch before that 2.4km section, which is numbered 18 (they go in reverse order from 27 to 1).
The 13 lead the peloton by 35 seconds.
Gert Steegmans (OPQ), Bjorn Thurau (EUC), Bob Jungels (RLT), Gatis Smukulis (KAT), Jacob Rathe (GRS), Jens Debuschere (LTB), Frederik Veuchelen (VCD), Michael Morkov (TST), Evaldas Siskevicius (SOJ), Guillaume Boivin (CAN), Eloy Teruel (MOV), Clement Kortesky (BSE) and Benjamin Lemontagner (BSE).
Lots of early attempts to establish a break on a cold morning, it is about 5 degrees right now, and right now a group of 13 men have a narrow advantage. Movistar's Eloy Turuel instigated the attack.
In total there are 52.6km of cobblestones to test the endurance, bike handling ability and sheer toughness of the riders. The cobbled sections are graded out of five by the organisers based on length, condition and position in the race.
Despite its name the race has started in the city of Compiegne, which is roughly 70km north-east of Paris, since 1968. The riders are currently heading east towards the Belgian border. The first 98.5km are flat and then the riders hit the first of 27 sections of cobblestones which determine this event.
If you are new to the 'Hell of the North' then here's a handy insight available via this link for web users and via the cycling video section if you are on mobile.
198 riders from 25 teams have just rolled out of the official start in Compiègne to take on the 254.5km route. All 19 ProTour teams are in attendance plus wildcards Bretagne-Séché, Cofidis, IAM, Sojasun, Europcar and Netapp-Endura.
Welcome to our coverage of Paris-Roubaix, part of the UCI World Tour and one of the so-called monuments of the European professional calendar. I'm Lee Walker, feel free to leave your comments in the box below or you can follow me on Twitter at @Lee_Eurosport