Team Sky's Ian Stannard has won Belgian race Omloop Het Niewsblad for the second year running, despite being outnumbered three to one by a trio of Etixx-Quick Step riders in the closing kilometres.
The Team Sky rider's power saw first Stijn Vandenbergh then former world champion Tom Boonen fall by the wayside.
That left him fighting with last year's Paris-Roubaix winner, Niki Terpstra, for the sprint. which Stannard took right on the line.
Five major European newspapers – The Times, Belgium’s Het Nieuwsblad and Le Soir, French title L’Equipe and Italy’s La Gazzetta dello Sport – have today joined launched a ‘Manifesto for credible cycling’ in the wake of the Lance Armstrong scandal and ahead of the conclusion of the Padova enquiry in Italy and next year’s Operacion Puerto trial in Spain.
Team Sky started their Spring Classics campaign with a bang with victory in the Het Nieuwsblad (formerly Het Volk) today in Ghent when Juan Antonio Flecha won by 18 seconds after making a decisive break with 19Km to go. Het Nieuwsblad is regarded by many as the first race of real significances in the Belgian spring calendar so this victory is a real feather in Team Sky's collective race caps.