Well this is the first year I have had Versus and first time I have had a chance to see a pro bike race. It is a race of about 160 miles, but that isn't what caught my attention. What did was the countryside. This one was through small towns and back roads. There were some smooth roads, and there were lots of cobblestones. Yet the scenery was as interesting as the race. It was through areas of farm fields, and narrow roads that were designed long before cars. I didn't understand much if any of the tactics, but I do understand how slick many of those types of road surfaces must have been and the skill to be that fast on them. Yet even more interesting was how the people lined the course. Not just for a few miles, but for large parts of the course. There was nothing but encouragement for the riders. It was interesting to see so many different types of bikes. I can't believe someone actually had their tires hand made for the race. Most of the riders everyone else would know, but I didn't. I recognized a few like George Hincapie, but most I wouldn't have a clue. It really seemed a shame that they were trying to get through that ride so fast instead of savoring it. Guess that is the difference between a pro racer and an old geezer. Still it was just the kind of encouragement I think we all need once in a while to get out and ride the back roads. Whether I am riding the back roads of Texas, or they riding the back roads of Northern France it reminded me of just how many back roads there are to explore. I never thought I would watch that much of a bike race, but the Paris Roubaix reminded me of so many country roads past I couldn't turn off.