Cycling News

Toronto’s Ashlin Barry on his 7th at Paris-Roubaix: ‘Pure suffering’

Toronto’s Ashlin Barry on his 7th at Paris-Roubaix: ‘Pure suffering'

On the same day as the pro men raced, there was a battle brewing with the under-19 men at Paris-Roubaix. Although the former is more than twice as long, the junior race at 111.1 km is still an incredible battle with multiple cobble sections. Toronto’s Ashlin Barry, racing for USA Cycling, took 7th, just half a minute behind the winner, Jakob Omrzel of Slovenia.

The first cobbled section was after just 30 km, Barry said. “It was a huge fight for position and very much like a sprint leadout into the first cobble section. I was caught behind a crash early. It left me in a chase group for 5 km or so. That resulted in me having to spend energy to get back to the front of the race.”

The early break

Coming out of the first sector the early break went immediately, Barry said. “Four riders separated off the front with a quick acceleration. An attack, which I was about 15 wheels too far back to follow,” he said. “I quickly realized my teammates were unable to follow the move. So when I got to the front less than a minute later I made a counter attack as I knew a couple key teams were unrepresented. More attacks flew past me but unfortunately every attempt was shut down by the Danish team. And so as the peloton was still quite large I re-focused on staying towards the front of the group. I wanted to conserve my energy by being in the front.”

Barry said that as they entered the next few sectors it was easy for him to be towards the front and begin relax in the wheels during each sector. “I began to see gaps opening and the group would come back together once we were back on the road so I knew it was likely the race would blow to pieces imminently.”

Carnage at sector 12

And sure enough it did. The race then came apart in sector 12.

“We turned into a really strong crosswind which began to cause splits in the group. A gap opened in front of me to about 15 riders and I could see two riders just off the front of that group. I knew this was a decisive moment. So I surged across the gap quickly to be in the group by the end of the sector,” Barry said “Immediately after, I could see the world champion’s stripes of the Danish rider Albert Philipsen and a Belgian rider just off the front. So with my legs still feeling good I put in an attack to go across which was soon shut down by the group behind.

A couple kilometres later they went into one of the hardest sectors of the race: Mons-en-Pévèle.

“I knew this was my chance to get across to the…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Canadian Cycling Magazine…