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  Omloop van het Hageland - Tielt-Winge Preview  
  Omloop van het Hageland is the fourth race in Belgium in just over a week and the final before racing move on to the Netherlands. In previous years it has attracted many of the big names of the women's peloton. The field is not as strong in 2015 as Strade Bianche the day before has attracted the attention of most of the big names. Emma Johansson and Lizzie Armitstead are both two-time winners but will not be making it a third. Of last years top 10 only Sofie De Vuyst is down to ride.

The second round of the season long Lotto Cycling Cup. No UCI points are on offer for winning the Lotto Cycling Cup but there is jerseys, prize money available across the overall, sprint, mountains and team classifications. As well as the standard UCI points for the individual race.

2014 Results

1 Elizabeth ARMITSTEAD 3:15:43
3 Audrey CORDON +4
4 Thalita DE JONG +4
5 Sofie DE VUYST +4
6 Annemiek VAN VLEUTEN +4
7 Jessie DAAMS +4
8 Amanda SPRATT +7
9 Katarzyna NIEWIADOMA +9

Past Winners

2014 Elizabeth Armitstead
2013 Emily Collins
2012 Elizabeth Armitstead
2011 Emma Johansson
2010 Emma Johansson
2009 Andrea Bosman
2008 Liesbet De Vocht
2007 Louise Moriarty
2006 Ilse Geldhof
2005 Ludivine Henrion

The Route

The 120.1km race starts with an opening lap of 53.1km before five laps of a local 13.4km finishing circuit. The opening 20km of the race as mostly flat, with the remainder of the lap up and down. The first categorised climb Kerkstraat comes after 49km, just ahead of the start of the finishing circuits.

As the peloton crosses the finish line to start the finishing circuits riders have the first sprint. Sprint points are available on the line the first four laps. The first seven kilometres of the lap are flat before the Roeselberg, with GPM points on offer the first four laps. Over the top the road levels out for around four kilometres before a descent and flat run in to the finish.

The Contenders

Start list available here

Sofie De Vuyst

Finished fifth here last year in a select chase group between that was four seconds down on Lizzie Armitstead and Emma Johansson. A very strong classics rider who is often under the radar as she doesn't ride for one of the big teams. Top 10 last year in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Le Samyn des Dames, Omloop van het Hageland and Gent-Wevelgem plus numerous other top 20 finishes. Very strong from a select group.

Boels Dolmans

The team might be without defending champion Lizzie Armitstead but they still have the strongest team in the race. Chantal Blaak has had a very strong start to the year finishing fourth at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad before taking a convincing win over Anna Van der Breggen and Emma Johansson at Le Samyn during the week.

Blaak is a rider who likes to attack especially in the closing stages and that is usually how she picks up her wins but has proven this year that her sprint is as strong as ever.

Ellen Van Dijk won Ronde van Vlaanderen last year when she attacked and nobody was willing to chase with Lizzie Armitstead sitting on. If Van Dijk managed to get even a small gap she will be hard to bring back without a strong coordinated chase and there are few teams with the strength of Boels in the race. Started 2015 very strongly finishing third overall in Qatar and taking a solo stage win.

Alexis Ryan (National Team United States)

Alexis Ryan is in her second year as a professional and had a strong debut last year in the spring classics. Finished 15th last year in the main peloton and 12th at Gent-Wevelgem a race with a similar field. Ryan has a quick finish and should not be discounted from a select group.

Other names to keep an eye on from the US National team including Kendall Ryan, Heather Fischer and Coryn Rivera.


Pascale Jeuland started 2015 strongly finishing eighth overall at the Ladies Tour of Qatar. Doesn't quite have the speed to match the pure sprinters but has a strong history at the race. Sixth in 2011 and 13th and 14th the past two years. If she still has the form she did in Qatar will be challenging for a top 10.

Roxane Fournier won the opening stage of Trophée d'Or Féminin at the end of 2014 and picked up where she left off finishing fourth on the final stage of the Ladies Tour of Qatar last month. A quick finisher, finished fourth at the Tour of Chongming Island last year. Won the bunch sprint for 11th in 2014.

Aude Biannic is another name to watch from the only French UCI team.

Lucy Martin (Matrix Fitness)

Martin is the most experienced rider on Matrix and is now in her fifth year as a professional. Had a difficult time the past two years but is ready to bounce back in a new environment. Finished ninth in 2012 and could well find herself improving on that this year. Her track background gives her a quick sprint from a select group.

Sara Olsson is another rider who has been continually improving and is ready to step up. British duo of Penny Rowson and Jessie Walker are also worth watching.

Wiggle Honda

Jolien D'hoore took five wins in 2014 including the Belgium Championship for 25 top 10 finishes. Has picked up where she left off finishing sixth at the Ladies Tour of Qatar and narrowly missed a medal finishing fourth in the omnium at the Track World Championships. One of the fastest finishers in the race and has proven to be very strong just after track season

Dani King returns from injury and decided to sit out the 2014/15 track season to focus on the road. King showed just what she is capable of during the British Championships last year. Unlikely to be at her best having suffered a life threatening crash at the end of 2014 but will be an important learning experience.

Lucy Garner and Amy Pieters

With Kirsten Wild having left the team it is time for two time junior World Champion Lucy Garner and 2014 Omloop Het Nieuwsblad winner to step up and start taking wins. Garner had a strong first year as a professional in 2013 winning a stage of the Tour of Chongming Island but was quieter in last year. There is no doubting Garner is one of the quickest finishers in the peloton. Took podium finishes at Molecaten Drentse 8, Grand Prix de Dottignies and Dwars door de Westhoek last year.

Amy Pieters has a quick finisher but is a more punchier sprinter and a strong classics rider. Was regularly in the mix last year with the likes of Emma Johansson and Lizzie Armitstead. Ninth at the Tour of Qatar but doesn't seem to have the form of last season.

Lauren Kitchen

Kitchen has had a strong start to 2015 finishing ninth in the road race at the Australian Championships before taking the Oceania road race title and silver in the time trial. Before adding two second places and fourth overall at the Women's Tour of New Zealand. Will be chasing an early season win in Europe and a win would be a big confidence boost.

Other names to watch: Kaat Hannes, Soline Lamboley, Fanny Riberot, Emilie Moberg, Claudia Lichtenberg and Anna Christian and Eileen Roe.
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