Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, 200km With accompanying photography from Sean Hardy we take a look back at the first Cobbled Classic of 2020.

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The first Classic of the year kicked off with an impressive indoor start in Gent. Conditions would quickly worsen once the riders hit the road, with 13 climbs and nine cobbled sectors on the menu.
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An early split in the wind saw five riders from the team make the front group, with Owain Doull, Chris Lawless, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard and Ben Swift part of a move which held a slender gap. 

The peloton would eventually regroup and the action came back together with 100km still to race.
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Ian Stannard launched a number of accelerations, and was able to bridge across to a split following the second passage over the Haaghoek. The race situation was constantly evolving, with a regrouping eventually seeing Rowe, Swift and Gianni Moscon in the same pack.
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Ben Swift would be the team's lead finisher, eventually dropping back ahead of the famous climb of the Muur. Those cobbles went a long way to deciding the race, with Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo) going clear alongside Yves Lampaert (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) and Soren Kragh Andersen (Team Sunweb). In the final it was Stuyven who prevailed in a two-up sprint.
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Reaction

- Gabriel Rasch

"We were on it in the early parts of the race and riding well as a team. Then we were a bit unlucky and off-guard at one moment and we got a little bit on the back foot. We paid the price for that afterwards.

"We need to take the positives with us going forward. There were some good rides today, including Ian and Swifty. Some of the guys weren't on their best days today so we need to evaluate and look at where we can improve."
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