'Opening Weekend' of Belgian Classics throws high winds and rain at peloton.
The Omloop Het Nieuwsblad was a proper Flandrian affair, bitterly cold, wet and windy, which meant that the peloton was really on edge.
Chloe Hosking and Sara Poidevin got soon back to the pointy end. Hosking made it into an elite group of about 20 riders as the race split over the Molenberg, then the race situation didn't change much until the foot of the Kapelmuur, where Annemiek van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) attacked and stayed away until the finish. Hosking won the spirit for eigth and Poidevin impressed in 30th.
"I'm really satisfied with my race. I went in with the goal of winning the bunch kick, whether that was for the win or behind a select group. I have to be realistic and accept that I'm not going to be able to climb with the best climbers in the world, and instead, I have to focus on my strengths. Today I didn't win, but I showed that I have a strong sprint at the end of a hard race, and we have a few races coming up that are sprint friendly. So, I can look ahead to those and be confident." - Chloe Hosking