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Howard takes sprint victory in Belgium

Cycling News

Australian earns second win of season

First-year professional Leigh Howard (HTC-Columbia) sprinted to victory in the Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen one-day race in Koolskamp, Belgium. The 20-year-old Australian outkicked Aidis Kruopis (Palmans-Cras) and Romain Feillu (Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team) to earn his second victory of the season.

"It was a pretty straightforward sprint with some great help from my teammates," said Howard. "Bernie [Bernhard Eisel] and Marcel [Sieberg] gave me the lead-out I needed and even though I went for it a bit too early myself, I was able to put my arms in the air to celebrate with 20 or 30 metres to go."

A four-rider breakaway was pulled back in the closing kilometres of the race, making a bunch sprint a virtual certainty. "We'd done a few laps through there and I'd had a good look at the finish," Howard said. "I had felt a bit hesitant beforehand because my last race didn't go so well. But when it got to the last few kilometres I was feeling good and ready to go for it. There were a couple of opportunities in the middle of the season I missed, but this time around it all worked out fine."

Full Results
1 Leigh Howard (Aus) Team HTC - Columbia 4:09:00  
2 Aidis Kruopis (Ltu) Palmans - Cras    
4 Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team    
6 Jetse Bol (Ned) Rabobank    
8 Gert Steegmans (Bel) Team Radioshack    
10 Timothy Dupont (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen - Bauknecht    
12 Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
14 Francois Jurgen (Bel) Palmans - Cras    
16 Frederique Robert (Bel) Quick Step    
18 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Landbouwkrediet    
20 Maxim De Busschere (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly    
22 Kurt Hovelynck (Bel) Quick Step    
24 Jonas Vangenechten (Bel) Verandas Willems    
26 Tom Van Becelaere (Bel) Palmans - Cras    
28 Eric Baumann (Ger) Team Netapp    
30 Maxime Vantomme (Bel) Team Katusha    
32 Rune Van Der Meijden (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof    
34 Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step    
36 Alexander Mironov (Rus) Itera-Katusha    
38 Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet    
40 Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team    
42 Bob Schoonbroodt (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof    
44 Sander Oostlander (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof    
46 Sjoerd Kouwenhoven (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof    
48 Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
50 Daniel Schorn (Aut) Team Netapp    
52 Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto    
54 Andy Cappelle (Bel) Verandas Willems    
56 Daryl Impey (RSA) Team Radioshack    
58 Serguei Klimov (Rus) Team Katusha    
60 Pavel Brutt (Rus) Team Katusha    
62 Jonathan Dufrasne (Bel) Qin Cycling Team    
64 Marco Velo (Ita) Quick Step    
66 Gerben Löwik (Ned) Omega Pharma-Lotto    
68 Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Team HTC - Columbia    
70 James Spragg (GBr) Qin Cycling Team    
72 Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Team Radioshack    
74 Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team    
76 Geert Omloop (Bel) Palmans - Cras    
78 Gorik Gardeyn (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team    
80 Bert De Backer (Bel) Skil - Shimano    
82 Sander Armee (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
84 Thomas Vedel Kvist (Den) Quick Step    
86 Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quick Step    
88 Tom Leezer (Ned) Rabobank    
90 Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank 0:00:28  
91 Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank    
93 Glenn D'Hollander (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto    
95 Gert Dockx (Bel) Team HTC - Columbia    
97 Gil Suray (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly    
99 Kevin Van Impe (Bel) Quick Step    
101 Tom Stubbe (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto    
103 Jens Mouris (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team    
105 Kim Borry (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly    
107 Stijn Steels (Bel) Qin Cycling Team    
109 Gregory Habeaux (Bel) Verandas Willems 0:00:45  
110 Fabio Polazzi (Bel) Verandas Willems    
112 Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank 0:01:10  
113 Andreas Dietziker (Swi) Vorarlberg - Corratec 0:01:32  
114 Rasmus Guldhammer (Den) Team HTC - Columbia 0:01:40  
115 Jonathan Bertrand (Bel) Landbouwkrediet 0:01:50  
116 Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Team NetApp    
118 Glenn Vandemaele (Bel) Team    
120 Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing Team    
122 Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:02:45  
123 Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet