'It is something that I will definitely never forget, it was the hardest race I've ever done' — The first dry Paris-Roubaix Femmes

In the race's second edition, everyone was having a 'completely different' experience, whether they were a veteran or a neo-pro

Paris-Roubaix Femmes
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Denain, where Paris-Roubaix Femmes began on Saturday, like seemingly all French towns, has some wonderfully named streets. There's a Rue Édouard Vaillant, named after a socialist who was part of the Paris Commune, a Rue Émile Zola, after the novelist, and a Rue Charles Fourier, after the socialist philosopher. There might be a left-wing theme here.

However, another stands out, the Rue Barbusse. Barbusse, Henri Barbusse, was a French novelist (and a communist, those reds again). His most famous work, although not particularly well known in English, is Le Feu, translated as Under Fire. The novel, one of the great books about the First World War, describes war in gritty and brutal realism, and is celebrated for its authenticity, which was based off some of Barbusse's own experiences. 

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Adam Becket
News editor

Adam is Cycling Weekly’s news editor – his greatest love is road racing but as long as he is cycling on tarmac, he's happy. Before joining Cycling Weekly he spent two years writing for Procycling, where he interviewed riders and wrote about racing. He's usually out and about on the roads of Bristol and its surrounds. Before cycling took over his professional life, he covered ecclesiastical matters at the world’s largest Anglican newspaper and politics at Business Insider. Don't ask how that is related to cycling.