Thursday, December 17, 2009

The "Wallers-Arenberg Trench" ..

... Wallers, the former mining area ...

Trouée d'Arenberg
Length - 2,400m. First used in 1968.
... an infamous stretch of ancient cobbled highway
gives cyclists a rough ride.
Some of the most exciting stages of this gruelling
annual top-class professional cycle race are in
the Nature Park - particularly the "paved sections"

on old cobbled roads in the mining area,
now carefully preserved.

.. the "Wallers-Arenberg Trench" has become the symbol
of Paris–Roubaix. Officially 'La Drève des Boules d'Herin',
the 2.400m of cobbles were laid in the time of Napoleon I
through the Raismes/Saint-Amand/Wallers forest ...


... A straight road through the Raismes/Saint-Amand/
Wallers Forest, dropping slightly at first, then rising.
The altitude is 25m at the start and 19m at the end

Cobbles rated *****.
... The cobbles are extremely difficult to ride because of
their irregularity. So many fans have taken away cobbles
as souvenirs that the Amis de Paris–Roubaix
have had to replace them

... as Stablinski said, “Paris-Roubaix is not won in Arenberg,
but from there the group with the winners is selected ...

... A memorial to Stablinski stands at one end of the road ...

Paris-Roubaix ... (EN)
... is a one-day professional bicycle road race in northern France near
the Belgian frontier. Since its beginning in 1896 until 1967 it started
in Paris and ended in Roubaix

Famous for rough terrain and cobblestones, it is one of the 'Monuments'
or Classics of the European calendar

... It has been called the The Hell of the North, A Sunday in Hell,
Queen of the Classics or La Pascale: the Easter race ...