Norway's Thor Hushovd may have his sights set higher this season
but he is back to defend his 2009 win at the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad.
Copyright © Pete Geyer/www.cyclingfans.com
Note: For the latest in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad live coverage news and links, go here.
Excited yet? The old "Het Volk" is here and that means the season's first classics are around the corner, as are the first big European stage races such as Paris-Nice which, can you believe it, starts just one week from Sunday.
Thor Hushovd (Cervelo Test Team) is back to defend his 2009 victory here and he'll have Heinrich Haussler and Roger Hammond among his teammates. That's just the beginning of some of the guys lining up Saturday and who will be battling in stage races and classics alike, at least through Paris-Roubaix April 11. How about the new Team Sky with Edvald Boasson Hagen and Juan Antonio Flecha? Garmin-Transitions with Tyler Farrar and Johan Vansummeren. BMC Racing Team with Alessandro Ballan, Marcus Burghardt, George Hincapie and Karsten Kroon. Team Katusha with Robbie McEwen and Filippo Pozzato. Omega Pharma-Lotto with Philippe Gilbert, Greg Van Avermaet and Leif Hoste. Quick Step with Tom Boonen, Sylvain Chavanel, and Stijn Devolder. Team RadioShack with Sebastian Rosseler, Gert Steegmans and Tomas Vaitkus. Saur-Sojasun with Jimmy Casper and Team Saxo Bank with Stuart O'Grady. There are so many plots and sub-plots ahead this season, it's enough to make your head spin. I'm tempted to say I don't see a dominant team but remember, Tom Boonen has won the past two editions of Paris-Roubaix and his teammate Stijn Devolder has won the past two editions of the Tour of Flanders! And Devolder is still looking for respect. And yet many of the riders above can strike on any given day, several are rising stars and their time can arrive at any moment, and there is much anticipation regarding BMC with its veteran lineup of classics strongmen. Grand Tour riders focus on May, July and September. For many of the riders above, the spring classics are where it's at, this is their season. Thanks to the class and great drama offered by these athletes, it'll be a good season for cycling fans. -Pete
There will be Omloop Het Nieuwsblad live video streaming, with RTBF among broadcasters for this race. We'll have live video feeds, tickers and more in the morning as well as video clips post race.
Omloop Profile, cobbles and climbs. Click graphic to enlarge.
Start List (.pdf)
Race starts at: 11:45 CET
(5:45am U.S. Eastern)
Live streaming on RTBF: 14:20 CET
(8:20am U.S. Eastern)
- check back in the morning for other sources -