Howard takes sprint victory in Belgium

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
1Leigh Howard (Aus) Team HTC - Columbia4:09:00 
2Aidis Kruopis (Ltu) Palmans - Cras  
4Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
6Jetse Bol (Ned) Rabobank  
8Gert Steegmans (Bel) Team Radioshack  
10Timothy Dupont (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen - Bauknecht  
12Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Landbouwkrediet  
14Francois Jurgen (Bel) Palmans - Cras  
16Frederique Robert (Bel) Quick Step  
18Steven Caethoven (Bel) Landbouwkrediet  
20Maxim De Busschere (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly  
22Kurt Hovelynck (Bel) Quick Step  
24Jonas Vangenechten (Bel) Verandas Willems  
26Tom Van Becelaere (Bel) Palmans - Cras  
28Eric Baumann (Ger) Team Netapp  
30Maxime Vantomme (Bel) Team Katusha  
32Rune Van Der Meijden (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof  
34Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step  
36Alexander Mironov (Rus) Itera-Katusha  
38Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet  
40Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team  
42Bob Schoonbroodt (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof  
44Sander Oostlander (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof  
46Sjoerd Kouwenhoven (Ned) Van Vliet EBH Elshof  
48Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
50Daniel Schorn (Aut) Team Netapp  
52Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto  
54Andy Cappelle (Bel) Verandas Willems  
56Daryl Impey (RSA) Team Radioshack  
58Serguei Klimov (Rus) Team Katusha  
60Pavel Brutt (Rus) Team Katusha  
62Jonathan Dufrasne (Bel) Qin Cycling Team  
64Marco Velo (Ita) Quick Step  
66Gerben Löwik (Ned) Omega Pharma-Lotto  
68Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Team HTC - Columbia  
70James Spragg (GBr) Qin Cycling Team  
72Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Team Radioshack  
74Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
76Geert Omloop (Bel) Palmans - Cras  
78Gorik Gardeyn (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
80Bert De Backer (Bel) Skil - Shimano  
82Sander Armee (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator  
84Thomas Vedel Kvist (Den) Quick Step  
86Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quick Step  
88Tom Leezer (Ned) Rabobank  
90Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank0:00:28 
91Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank  
93Glenn D'Hollander (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto  
95Gert Dockx (Bel) Team HTC - Columbia  
97Gil Suray (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly  
99Kevin Van Impe (Bel) Quick Step  
101Tom Stubbe (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto  
103Jens Mouris (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team  
105Kim Borry (Bel) An Post - Sean Kelly  
107Stijn Steels (Bel) Qin Cycling Team  
109Gregory Habeaux (Bel) Verandas Willems0:00:45 
110Fabio Polazzi (Bel) Verandas Willems  
112Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank0:01:10 
113Andreas Dietziker (Swi) Vorarlberg - Corratec0:01:32 
114Rasmus Guldhammer (Den) Team HTC - Columbia0:01:40 
115Jonathan Bertrand (Bel) Landbouwkrediet0:01:50 
116Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Team NetApp  
118Glenn Vandemaele (Bel) Team  
120Steve Morabito (Swi) BMC Racing Team  
122Mauro Santambrogio (Ita) BMC Racing Team0:02:45 
123Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet  
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