Briton Stannard retains Het Nieuwsblad title

Sat Feb 28, 2015 12:29pm EST
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BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Briton Ian Stannard won the first classic one-day race of the season when he beat three Etixx-Quick Step riders in a tense finale to the Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday.

The Team Sky rider, who also won the race last year, was part of a four-man breakaway with Tom Boonen, Niki Terpstra and Stijn Vandenberg 43-km from the end.

Boonen and Terpstra attacked one after another but Stannard could not be dropped.

The 27-year-old Englishman, whose 2014 season was plagued by injury, beat Terpstra in the final sprint to wrap up a flawless ride.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot, editing by Tony Jimenez)

Sky team rider Ian Stannard of Britain crosses the finish line to win the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad cycling race ahead of Quick Step team rider Niki Terpstra of the Netherlands in Ghent February 28, 2015.    REUTERS/Eric Vidal