Rider so late he found Roubaix velodrome closed last year now among very best

Posted on: April 15th, 2019
This time last year Evaldas Siskevicius had fallen so far behind at Paris Roubaix that the velodrome was closed when he arrived and the staff had to let him in so he could complete the course, as he was determined to. Yesterday he got into the top 10; an incredible turn around.

Evaldas Siskevicius may not be one of the star names of pro cycling but Paris Roubaix has made him a giant of the road.

Last year he won people’s hearts when he continued in the race though he had fallen a long way behind.

Indeed, he was so far back that when he arrived at the Roubaix velodrome it was closed and the staff had to let him in.

Once inside the grounds he completed his 1½ laps, thus racing the full course.

However, he was an hour down on winner Peter Sagan and so outside the time limit. It meant he wasn’t credited with an official time.

This year the 30-year-old Delko Marseille Provence cyclist from Lithuania has pulled one of the rides of his life out of the bag to finish 9th in Hell of the North.

He finished in an eight-man group sprinting for 6th, some 47 seconds down on winner and runner-up Philippe Gilbert and Nils Politt.

Evaldas Siskevicius posted the data from his 9th place at Paris Roubaix yesterday. Click on image for larger version.

“Last year it was difficult,” he said. “Now, I do not hide that when I entered the bus, tears began to flow. I spoke with my wife and it’s better. “

He added of finishing so far down last year: “In the beginning, the messages made me very happy, but afterwards it was a little annoying.

“Everyone spoke to me about it but when you’re a cyclist, you’re proud to talk about your results.”

In 2017 and in 2013 Evaldas Siskevicius rode Paris-Roubaix but was a non-finisher both times. He placed 80th three years ago.

Those three outings in the Hell of the North were his only monument appearances in his career before yesterday.

Siskevicius was 20th and 26th in the U23 version of the race before turning pro.

He has won nine elite UCI-ranked races in his career . They include the final yellow jerseys in Circuit des Ardennes, Volta ao Alentejo and Tour of Yancheng Coastal Wetlands.

This was Evaldas Siskevicius last year; the footage from the broom wagon was required to prove he didn’t take a tow to make it to the finish.
Twelve months ago when he had mechanical problems, he took advantage of coming across his broken down team car to get what he needed to keep going.