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Omloop Het Nieuwsblad Discussion
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Posted on 26-01-2023 21:27
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The PCT cobbles season is in full swing now. Omloop is the first big challenge to not include PT cobblers, or at least it shares that title with the C1 Viana do Castelo, which it clashes with. But while Viana attracts very small fields due to its combination of cobbles and climbing, Omloop is a traditional cobbled classic. Tough cobbles throughout, small hills along the way, and a length of about 200 kilometers. As such, most northern classics specialists have made their way here.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/brs.png Stallaert77677668817976
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Blythe75657469817571
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Vanbilsen78698074807271
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/cdb.png Trentin73737469807474
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png Daniel73697676807672
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/taf.png Breen77707272787372
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/lpu.png Gamper77667777786371
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png Van Keirsbulck72717573787068
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Bush74637573787173
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/sva.png Owen73697371786471
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/afr.png Moulingui74717171786568
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Vanspeybrouck72677265786363
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/pfi.png Kuroeda74637273777478
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Van Lerberghe74667574777573
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/kmm.png Zhupa75677874777468
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/p4e.png Manamalage81597164775756
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Kolev75627371776267
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/pfi.png Kuroeda72707677767673

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/brs.png Joeri Stallaert is obviously the biggest favorite. He won from a small group last year, and he just showed he hasn't lost a step by winning Franceville Classique last weekend. He's maybe the strongest rider and definitely the strongest sprinter in the race. His team support is a little weaker than last year, but that shouldn't be a problem for him.

In pure cobbles skill, Stallaert is matched only by pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Blythe. The Brit had a down year last year, and he has since seen his skills decline. Nevertheless, he was third here last year and is still a favorite. He also has a strong team behind him, including quality lieutenants pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Bush and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Van Lerberghe, who are top 10 contenders in their own right.

This race suits pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Kenneth Vanbilsen very well on paper, though he has not yet been able to break into the top 5 here throughout his career. He loves the flats, he loves long races, and he's a diesel in terms of energy. The field is a bit thinner this year, and with veteran pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Vanspeybrouck at his side, this may be the year he snags a win.

So often he flies under the radar, but pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png Maxime Daniel is very clearly a top favorite now. He is the most well rounded of the contenders, with very good resistance and a solid sprint. His number two, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png GVK, matches his style at a slightly lower level, but could break into the top five just as easily if they play their tactics rights. He's spent his career being very good without being the top guy, but at 31, Daniel has his chance now.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/cdb.png Trentin had a good year last year, and though he's declined over the winter, he's still a threat. He likes hills and can still sprint. If Franceville was any indiciation though, he may be happy just to have one last big contract and soft pedal his way to the end of his career.

There are plenty of other contenders as well who could do well on a good day, though they are a step below the top favorites. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/taf.png Breen is the top CT rider present and could easily find himself in the top 5. In an aged field, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/lpu.png Gamper is the young stud ready to prove himself. He'll hope for small groups as he can't really sprint. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/sva.png Owen, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/afr.png Moulingui, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/pfi.png Kuroeda all will hope to lead their teams to good results.


We'll see you in Belgium tomorrow!
Double booked here, but Gamper has some support still. Makes me scared to look at my Viana squad though.
Changed my sig, this was getting absurd.
This is a historic race for us. The first time I'm not sending maximum riders to a race. With Zepuntke gone there is no honor to gain here, so just using this race for development.

My three remaining cobblers going to Viana to snatch some points also plays a minor part Wink
Just realised that I sent Riesebeek here, when he probably should have been at Viana, oh well, we do a little bit of trolling :lol: Thanks for the preview. Hoping that the duo of GVK and Daniel can do something and hopefully produce a result that secures a good start to the cobbles season!
Thanks for the preview Nemo & BBL.

Any points for Kraftwerk will be good, hoping new boy de Buyst can finish in the scoring positions.
Manager of Renault Classic [ICL]
Manager of Kraftwerk Man Machine [Man Game]
A nice, bumpy day off for our squad of 6 in Belgium. Hope they can recommend some good beers to me when they get back.

Hope Joeri can keep his season rolling along here and demolish everybody. Thanks for the preview!
Indosat - ANZ HQ

"This Schleck sandwich is going to cause serious indigestion for Evans" - Phil Liggett
The Kuroedas lead our line for the first time on cobbles, let see what they can do. Interesting that Shiki is higher in the favourites' list, with his sprint giving an edge over his brother. Let's see how it goes.

Thanks for the preview bbl Smile
Thanks for the great preview, bbl! Good luck to all Smile
Congrats to Stallaert for win #2 this year - at least that's by far the most probable scenario. He's already kicked the butts of some decent PT cobblers this year, and it's hard to imagine someone beating the best cobbler AND sprinter in the field. Maybe Blythe can challenge him, as he's got very strong support in Bush and Van Lerberghe, which is a pretty strong team in this year's PCT cobbles. I also like Daniel with his great energy stats; furthermore he's the 2nd fastest sprinter on the list and GvK as a strong support rider.

Good luck to all, and thanks to bbl for the preview and - once again - to Nemo for the report Smile
No Vermeersch here for XP reasons and no van Zyl either so it's up to Jams and Young in the 70-ish CB gang to try and bring that momentum from the points finishes in Franceville to this one too Smile Looking forward to the first PCT cobbles clash of the season!
24/02/21 - kandesbunzler said “I don't drink famous people."
22/07/21 - quadsas said "I admire you [jandal] so much as a manager, squad builder and a person"
15/08/22 - SotD said "Your [jandal's] humour is overrated"

[ICL] Santos-Euskadi | The Life And Times | [PCT] i.imgur.com/c85NSl6.png Xero Racing

4x i.imgur.com/wM6Wok5.png x4
Wouldn't call this a must-win for Stallaert, but it's probably as close to it as we get. Worst case is that he tries to attack early and wastes a lot of energy before being caught by the strong Binance/Trans/Hello Fresh domestiques. If he rides smartly and follows wheels until the finishing straight, this should be doable. Going 2 for 2 in early season win goals would be massive. Let's see. Thanks for the very nice preview bbl!
Thanks for a great report Nemo!

Can't be too upset at Daniel for losing out in the sprint to Stallaert, he's different gravy, but it would have been incredibly nice with a win here since we are developing a pattern of finishing second in our one day races so far this season! If I did my math correctly we accumulate 79 points from this race, which is still less than the win but nice depth scoring nonetheless!

Congrats to Cunego on the win!
Congrats cunego! Stallaert taking care of business, as he should.

5th is a quality result for Trentin. You can see the resistance deficit especially making it harder for him to make sustained efforts this year, but he's still strong enough to make the main selection. Hopefully that continues.

A little bit disappointed in our depth scoring though, especially because it seemed like our secondary guys were fairly active. Lander's attack and 25th make his participation worth it over more sprint days, and it was good to see Girmay lasting a while in the peloton. But I was hoping guys like Resell and Mestric might be able to sneak into the scoring positions, and they weren't able to. Still, no big losses there.

Thanks for an amazing report as always Nemo! Very exciting racing too.
RIP Exxon Duke, David Veilleux, Double Feature, and Monster Energy
Stallaert on fire and HelloFresh with a huge team result. Congrats there!
A Big Thank You To All MG Reporters!

Joeri you freaking machine! Played it perfectly, with a little help from Okbamariam sprinkled in, which was nice after being dropped earlier on. He played it perfectly to join the two Binance guys, apparently didn't spend too much energy when he went solo for a bit, and well, who could stop him in a sprint? Fantastic stuff, couldn't be happier!

Some cool results otherwise, too. Gamper has turned into a great rider and he delivers again following a good Franceville Classique. Nice too see Vanbilsen perform well for Trans, and while Blythe individually may not have been at the top of his game, depth once again makes this a strong result for Binance.

Lastly, fantastic report Nemo, thank you! The race was really interesting, PCM cobbles AI delivers once more, and you made the most of it.
Tikhonin tried, that's all I can ask.

Thanks for the report Nemolito and congrats cunego!
Congrats Cunego, there's a new Summerhill in the PCT!

Gamper with another great race, even beating Vanbilsen this time (no hard feelings, I'm happy he's getting good results again). If he can be a consistent scorer this season, our promotion dreams are not gone yet.

Thanks for the report Nemo!
Changed my sig, this was getting absurd.
I'm looking more and more stupid having agreed to swap Gamper for Moscon now... Great job by the young Austrian, still hoping to get him back some day Wink

And Stallaert doing stellar things, as usual. Normal day in the office Pfft
Daniel with a nice result as well, although he's surely hoping he'll finally find a race without Stallaert Wink Blythe rather disappointing once again, after his 2021 season already wasn't good. Despite having great team support this time. Hopefully he'll find a way to get some better results again.

Thanks for the report, very entertaining Smile
Individually this was clearly not the best day for Blythe, but that was compensated for the other elements of the team that managed to place 3 riders in the top 15 and 5 riders to score which in my estimation allows us to be the team with the most points in this race.
Stallaert is on another level right now and looks unbeatable, congrats Cunego for yet another great win.
Thanks for one great report
pcmdaily.com/files/Micros17/bgc.pngManager of Binance Cyclingpcmdaily.com/files/Micros17/bgc.png
Once again cobbles are our nemesis. I tried addressing it in the transfer period but it didn't work out. Fortunately we have very few race days on such terrain.
Here the objectives were the presence in the breakaway and maybe snatching some points with Patrick Naud. I am happy to say we achieved both of them, Huertas gave us the desired presence in the breakaway while Naud managed to sneak into the 30th position at the end. Also I'm happy our youngsters are gathering experience to further their development.

Congratulations Cunego for an awesome win!
And thank you very much for the excellent report!
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