There was further cycling success over the weekend for both Mark Cavendish and Ian Stannard on Belgian soil (or rather road), as the two British riders took victories in their respective events. Cavendish took the one-day Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne race with one of his trademark sprint finishes, while compatriot Stannard successfully defended his title at the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad race.
The 'Manx Missile' is enjoying 2015 so far, with success for Cav making it six victories already for him and his Etixx-Quick-Step team, who he was quick to praise for their efforts on his part during the race and the season so far. He remains the only Brit to have ever won the race, repeating his feat from 2012, when he was still a member of Team Sky. His team set him up perfectly to outsprint Katusha's Alexander Kristoff from Norway and Elia Viviani of Italy in the run-in to the line.
The 29-year-old described the support that his team members provided as "incredible" afterwards.
Twenty-seven-year-old Stannard often plays the role of "domestique" for his team in the bigger events, putting his energies to use for the benefit of his fellow riders, especially the team leader. However, he enjoyed his own moment of glory at the race in Belgium to clinch victory in the event he also took twelve months ago. Given the number of riders up at the front of the peloton for the Etixx-Quick-Step team, it had looked likely that one of them would come through for the triumph, but Stannard was not to be denied as he held off all three of their challenges at the end on the run-in to the line. That left the attacks of Tom Boonen and Stijn Vandenbergh, plus the sprint of Niki Terpstra as all ultimately being in vain. Stannard has recovered from breaking his back last year to get back to where he was before that setback, so was very pleased to take the win.
In other cycling news, Britain's Dame Sarah Storey was unable to claim the women's hour record that she was attempting to break at the London Olympic velodrome.
The 37-year-old Paralympian athlete completed a distance of 45.502km in the time limit, which was good enough to set new figures as the British and Paralympian C5 records, but the overall record of 46.065km eluded her. That mark is still held by Leontien Zijlaard-van Moorsel from Holland, dating back to 2003. Despite being ahead of schedule during the early stages of her attempt, she was unable to maintain the tempo in the second half of the sixty minutes effort.