Cycling

Boonen targets Paris-Roubaix return

Tom Boonen (AFP)
Tom Boonen (AFP)

Brussels - Belgian sprinter Tom Boonen, injured in a fall at the Paris-Nice race, has returned to training in the slim hope of competing in the Paris-Roubaix classic next month.

Marc Coucke, the leading sponsor of Boonen's Etixx-Quick Step team, said the 34-year-old Belgian had a very slim chance of competing in the race on April 12.

"Tom Boonen is training hard, there is one percent chance that he will compete in the Paris-Roubaix race," Coucke said on Twitter.

"Tom explained that he would certainly check out the Paris-Roubaix course. After that he will make a decision on whether he will compete in the race.

"Hope springs eternal," said Coucke.

The former world road race champion fell heavily on the first stage of the Paris-Nice on March 9, suffering a shoulder injury which requires two months rest.

Boonen has won the Paris-Roubaix, dubbed the 'Hell of the North', four times. But the one-day road specialist revealed on Friday that he had cycled 100km despite a painful shoulder.

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