06/04/14 - 6:30 PM
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Road race - Men
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Ronde van Vlaanderen • Stage1
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Road race - Men
Ronde van Vlaanderen - 6 April 2014

Ronde van Vlaanderen – Follow this cycling race live with Eurosport. The action starts at 18:30 on 6 April 2014. Our live coverage lets you follow all the key moments as they happen.
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Highlights 
 
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Fabian Cancellara joins the elite group of riders who have won the Tour of Flanders on three occasions.

0km 

The final sprint went the logical way with Cancellara pipping Van Avermaet and Vanmarcke completing the podium for third ahead of Vandenberg.

0km

Van Avermaet tries to rein in Cancellara but it's the Swiss who takes a famous third win!

0.2km 

Van Avermaet on the front with Vanmarcke in his wheel. This is like a track race... and then Cancellara goes!

0.5km 

But the attack runs out of steam, and it's back together...

1km 

Under the banner and they're weaving all over the place... Vandenberg is the first to attack!

1.5km 

Cat and mouse now as the pace slows. They have 25 seconds over the chasers so it's one of these four to win.

2km 

Just as they get back together, Van Avermart attacks. Then Cancellara has a dig! No can do.

3km 

Vanmarcke takes up the slack in the pursuit of the two leaders.

3.5km 

Big dig by Vandenberg, who has been the sandbagger of the group. Van Avermaet goes with him, and the other two have been distanced momentarily.

5km 

Fabian Cancellara pops an energy gel. It's one Swiss man verses three Belgians. The odds look to be in favour of the host nation - but this is Spartacus we're talking about.

6km 

Boonen is in a quartet with Thomas and Leukemans and one other, bit it is in vain. They are 45 seconds down. The leaders have 33 over Kristoff and Terpstra.

8km 

Kristoff has been joined by Niki Terpstra of Omega Pharma. Thomas must be further back. This is a very long and flat lead into the finish. They will struggle to cancel out those 25 seconds.

9km 

Kristoff is struggling to make any in-roads. He's 20 seconds down now.

10km 

It's Alexander Kristoff of Katusha who rides solo in pursuit, with Thomas a bit further back. Together they may have a chance, but individually it may be hard.

11km 

Van Avermaet has been caught so we have four men in the lead now.

12km 

Cancellara swings his arms in anger to provoke a reaction from Vandenberg and Vanmarcke, who are being rather passive in the chase. Back with the chasing group, both Sagan and Boasson Hagan look well and tryly spend on the back of the pack. In fact, Geraint Thomas is riding in pursuit of the Cancellara group!

13km 

Vandenberg is caught by Cancellara and Vanmarcke. They trail Van Avermaet by 10 seconds over the top. But the Sagan chasing group is not much further back so don't discount a mini bunch sprint today...

13.5km 

Van Avermaet drops Vandenberg, while Vanmarcke is piling the pressure on Cancellara.

14km 

PATERBERG: LAST CLIMB: Just 400m at 12% with a max of 20%.

15km 

Just 12 seconds in it as Cancellara leads the chase ahead of the Paterberg.

16km

Sagan is leading the chase in a five-man group that also includes Boasson Hagen. Van Avermaet and Vandenberg have 15 seconds on Cancellara and Vanmarcke. The Sagan group is 12 seconds back.

17km

Here is the Cancellara push! Only Vanmarcke can match the Swiss for pace and they pass Leukemans and ride clear.

18km 

We're onto the third and final climb of the Oude-Kwaremont. It's the penultimate climb of the race and still it's Van Avermaet doing all the work. Back with the pack, it's Boasson Hagen in Sagan's wheel, who is in Cancellara's wheel. Wiggins is there too, now that it's come back together.

20km 

Luca Paolini catches the chasing group of favourites and then passes in one fell-swoop. The mini peloton has joined the Boonen-Sagan-Cancellara group and it's all back together. They trail the two leaders by a minute, mind, with Leukemans still 25 seconds back.

21km

The two leaders have 25 seconds over Leukemans and 48 seconds over the main chasing group. It's growing. Meanwhile, the peloton is creeping back, with Paolini the first to rejoin.

23km 

Sebastien Minard now attacks, with Devenyns in pursuit. This sparks a reaction from the others. Degenkolb de-cleated but recovered ok. It's all quite nervous now.

24km 

Leukemans is now riding solo in pursuit of the two leaders. Some nice work from the Wanty rider on this wide, smooth road. But we still have two more cobbled climbs on the horizon...

25km 

Vanmarcke is doing his best to throw a cat amongst the pigeons. Terpstra and Leukemans has opened up a small gap, but it has been neutralised. The leading duo have 25 seconds now, but it's all Van Avermaet because Vandenberg knows he has three men in the chasing group.

27km

The gap is 20 seconds for Van Avermaet and Vandenberg.

28km 

Sagan's upping of the tempo pulls back Leukemans and Minard on the climb. Now it's Cancellara on the front with Boonen, Vanmarcke and Sagan. Degenkolb and Boasson Hagan are hanging in on the back.

29km 

Minard and Leukemans jump clear in pursuit of Van Avermaet and Vandenberg. Tinkoff-Saxo's Nikki Sorensen has joined the main group, but is them promptly dropped on the Kruisberg as Sagan drops the hammer with Vanmarcke on the front.

31km 

Van Avermaet pings off the front with one of the Omega riders in pursuit. It's Vandenberg. No reaction from the others on this sweeping downhill through a residential area.

32km 

The leaders are: Cancellara, Sagan, Boonen, Stybar, Terpstra, Vandenberg, Boasson Hagen, Devenyns, Van Avermaet, Degenkolb, Leukemans and Vanmarcke. They have 27 seconds ahead of the chasing group.

33km 

Boasson Hagen is the only Sky rider left in this main group - Thomas seems to have been shed. Sagan is very isolated.

34km 

Sebastien Minard of Ag2R is in this main group too, as is Bjorn Leukemans of Wanty.

35km 

Off comes the arm warmers for Boasson Hagen. He and Devenyns will be caught soon.

36km 

Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky) is doing all the work on the front of this race with Dries Devenyns (Giant) in his wheel. They have 14 seconds over a small chasing group that includes Cancellara, Boonen, Vandenberg, Terpstra, Van Keirsbulck, Sagan, Van Avermaet, Degenkolb, Thomas and Vanmarcke.

36.5km 

Van Avermaet has caught Vandenberg, who seems to be in two minds as to whether he should ride on or wait for his team-mate Boonen. Just behind them, the likes of Boonen, Cancellara and Sagan.

37km 

Boasson Hagen leads the three men onto the Taaienberg (530m at 6.6%). It's BMC's Greg van Avermaet who leads the chase.

38km 

We have three men out in front: Vandenberg, Boasson Hagen and Devenyns of Giant.

39km 

Impey, the last man standing from the break, is finally caught on the Steenbeekdries. Over the top it's OPQS on the front with Stijn Vandenberg driving the pace.

40km 

Peter Sagan is isolated, with Oscar Gatto, his team-mate, trying to chase back on. Sky have both Thomas and Boasson Hagen.

41km 

The lead group is down to about 20 riders, with a second pack of a similar size in pursuit.

42km 

The OPQS combo of Boonen and Terpstra looks very solid.

43km 

The sun is now shining as Devolder continues his near-solo ride in pursuit of the main men. He's around a minute down though so it will be a big ask.

44km 

Boonen, Sagan, Cancellara and Degenkolb are all near the front, with Thomas just a bit back, with Boasson Hagen and Vanmarcke. All the big guns are there as the three remaining escapees are swept up.

44km 

Impey leads ahead of Phinney and Broeckx. They only have about 20 seconds now - not even. The dry conditions means it's not as hard as usual - but better them than me.

45km 

We're onto the Koppenberg (600m at 11.6% with a max gradient of 22%).

46km 

Order restored: Omega Pharma-Quick Step have six men back on the front of the ain pack, which is now about 30-strong. Koppenberg coming up - described by Boonen this week as 'a terrifying climb'.

49km 

Just forty seconds for Phinney, Impey and Broeckx. Back in the pack, and John Degenkolb of Giant-Shimano is having a stormer alongside Sky's Geraint Thomas.

50km 

We're onto the Paterberg (260m at 12.9%). Incredibly, Stijn Devolder has got back on his bike and is still riding.

52km

BIG CRASH: Some Tinkoff-Saxo men come down after a fast right-hander, then Stijn Devolder ploughs into the back of the chaos at speed. Once again, terrible luck for the Belgian national champion, who is holding his arm in pain. Surely the end of the race for Devolder.

53km 

That chasing group have been joined by riders from Belkin and Cannondale, but they are just a handful of metres up the road from the pack. The leading trio of Phinney, Impey and Broeckx have 47 seconds to play with.

54km 

Jens Keukeleire of GreenEdge has attacked from the peloton on the Oude-Kwaremont. The Australian team have been very active today. He catches Trentin and they chase down Zingle, van Landschoot, Eisel and Kuchynski.

55km 

Eisel, Quintiazo and Trentin are catching the remnants of that break, but in turn are about to be caught by the peloton.

55km 

Zingle and Kreder have been dropped from the leading group on the second ascent of the Oude-Kwaremont. Kuchynski is struggling, so we have just Phinney, Impey and Broeckx on the front.

56km 

Giant-Shimano and Sky come to the front, with Geraint Thomas right there. The Welshman has a graze on his chin following an earlier crash.

58km

The peloton makes the most of a wide stretch of road to spread out. The pace is very high as the lead comes down to 1'27.

60km 

Here come Astana and Tinkoff - what was black and white on the front is now yellow and baby blue.

62km 

Cannondale, BMC, Tinkoff, Europcar and Trek all apparent on the front of the race. Omega Pharma-Quick Step had bodies galore earlier in the race, but they've taken their foot off the gas.

63km 

All the commotion means that the six leaders see their advantage creep up to 2'05. The three chasers - Eisel, Quinziato and Trentin - are still chasing potatoes in between.

65km 

Yet another crash - this time MTN-Qhubeka and Wanty riders go down.

66km 

Cannondale and Tinkoff have come to the front to help lead the chase as the riders approach the Oude-Kwaremond for the second time.

68km

ANOTHER CRASH: Four riders hit the deck at steep. That may have involved a telegraph pole and we have bodies and bikes in a ditch. FDJ, Katusha, Lotto and NetApp all involved there. Russian national champion Vladimir Isaychev looks to have been the worst affected.

69km

The six leaders have 1'10 over the chasing trio and 2'00 over the pack.

71km

ATTACK: Manuel Quinziato (BMC) and Matteo Trentin (OPQS) jump clear on the Kanarieberg. Sky's Bernard Eisel manages to bridge the gap.

72km 

The six leaders have just under two minutes onto the Kanarieberg.

74km

Gaudin put in his attack in the feedzone. The rangy Frenchman joined Ag2R-La Mondiale from Europcar in the winter after his fifth place in Paris-Roubaix last year.

76km

ATTACK: Damien Gaudin of Ag2R-La Mondiale has opened up a small gap of the front of the peloton.

77km

Meanwhile, Ellen van Dijk (Boels-Dolmans) has just won the Women's Tour of Flanders with a strong solo ride. Her British team-mate Lizzie Armistead takes second place.

78km 

We're onto the short Keperij climb. Back in the pack, Edvald Boasson Hagen and Christian Knees of Team Sky have come to the front alongside the three blue figures from FDJ. Their man for today is Arnaud Demare.

80km

The leaders see their advantage slashed to 2'25". They're combining well. The six riders are: Taylor Phinney (BMC), Romain Zingle (Cofidis), Daryl Impey (GreenEdge), Stig Broeckx (Lotto), Aliaksandr Kuchynski (Katusha) and James van Landschoot (Wanty).

86km 

Mitchell Docker of GreenEdge broke out of the pack on the Valkenberg. His move has sparked a reaction from the pack with numerous riders trying to get across.

87km

Peter Sagan is off the back after a comfort break. Cancellara is even further back after picking up that new helmet and answering his own call of nature. There must be a truce of sorts for the favourites because neither rider seems very concerned about their positions.

88km 

The leaders are onto the Valkenberg, a short 540m climb at 8.1km. The gap is still just above three minutes for the break, with Jelle Walleys now off the back. In fact, we have just six men out in front now. Their names coming up.

90km 

We haven't seen much of Fabian Cancellara, the defending champion, for a while. He's just requested a new helmet from his Trek team car.

92km

Now Cannondale, Belkin, Sky and Ag2R-La Mondiale edge forward alongside Omega Pharma. The nine-man break still have 3'05 over the pack.

94km 

The pace has slowed in the pack with FDJ and OPQS on the front. Belkin and Cannondale are well back, while Trek have had to regroup after losing Devolder momentarily to that crash.

96km 

The leaders are onto the Leberg, the first climb since the Molenberg. It's just under 1km at 4.2%.

97km 

Incredibly, OPQS still have around seven riders on the front - they have today control of this race. But we still have a long way to go.

98km 

Still it's Taylor Phinney driving the pace on the latest cobbled ramp. The American looks in supreme form today. Very impressive riding. The break has 3'12 on the pack, which is still agitated after that succession of spills.

100km

CRASH: Sky's Gabriel Rasch is battered and bruised on the ride of the road after a tumble. It's all happening today.

102km

Yet another crash for Lotto: this time it's Tony Gallopin, who hits some road furniture. He's on his way, but with Roelandts already down and out, that's yet another blow for the Belgian outfit.

103km 

The second peloton, which includes Stijn Devolder, is about 30 seconds back. Devolder is isolated because the rest of the Trek team - bar Popovych, who will surely retire from the race - are with Cancellara. Terrible luck for Trek, whose plans have been thrown into turmoil.

104km 

Things have quietened down after that chaotic period. The peloton has regrouped but only about 60-strong for now. The escapees have 3'35 over the pack, with Phinney and Broeckx relaying on the front.

106km

CRASH: Yaroslav Popovych hits the deck hard after getting his handlebars caught on the red jacket of a fan in the gutter. Spectators have come to his aid.

108km 

Thanks to their placement on the front of the pack, Omega Pharma-Quick Step avoided the crash chaos there and have their men in the clear. The pack has been whittled down to about 50 riders after that incident.

110km

Stijn Devolder, the Belgian national champion, was involved in that crash. Terrible luck for the two-time champion from Trek, who is receiving some treatment from the team car as he fights back on.

111km

CRASH: There's a huge pile up on a left-hand bend in the peloton with numerous riders hitting the deck and others forced into the road-side ditch. Coming after a descent, that was chaos, with riders ploughing into the back of the carnage thanks to the blind bend.

112km 

Sebastian Langerveld swaps bikes with Garmin team-mate Steel Von Hoff. The Dutchman is Garmin's last card now Vansummeren is out. Langerveld is being paced back by David Millar. The leaders now have 3'35 over the pack, with Palini and Raymond Kreder struggling.

113km 

That little dig by Boonen has sparked a lot of movement in the pack. A Belkin rider swings to the front, while Devolder and Spartacus are all smiles in his wake.

115km

ATTACK: Tom Bonen of OPQS edges clear on the short Molenberg climb. He eases up once over the top and off the cobbles - but that was a sign that he's in good condition.

116km 

After a cold and wet start, it's now up to 18 degrees and the sun is coming out. The riders will have to make sure they drink enough and eat enough. The pack is onto the Molenberg...

117km 

After the long Kerkgate cobbled section the pace in the peloton has upped considerably. Unfortunately, Jurgen Roelandts, third last year, had to withdraw following that crash. The lead is now 3'50 for the break.

121km

MECHANICAL FOR SAGAN: The Slovak pulls onto the pavement to replace his front wheel and is now riding back through the peloton from the back. Moments earlier there was a crash for Lampre Merida's Elia Favilli.

122km 

The latest on that crash involving Johan Vansummeren and the elderly female spectator is that both are in hospital undergoing treatment. The lady is alive but in critical condition. Let's hope we have some good news later today.

124km

CRASH: Jurgen Roelandts looks in considerable pain as he lies prostrate on a cobbled driveway beside the road. The Lotto Belisol rider was a decent outside bet for today.

126km 

Daryl Impey, who last summer because the first South African to wear the Tour's yellow jersey, sets the pace for the leaders as they pass through a cobbled residential area. The road is slightly uphill, but this is not a categorised climb.

128km 

Belvin and Cannondale, in their eye-catching green jerseys, are playing things cool, riding en masse about 20 riders back as Trek and OPQS continue to set the pace.

130km 

The Wolvenberg (645m at 7.9%) is now being tackled by the leaders. No cobbles here, but these tests will all have their cumulative affect.

132km 

The peloton is onto the Eikenberg (1.2km at 5.9%). Thor Hushovd is on the back. The Norwegian national champion picked up a puncture a moment ago.

133km 

The Omega Pharma rider leading the peloton around a bend has to bunnyhop over a piece of road furniture that he didn't expect to see. Niki Terpstra, perhaps. He looks behind to check that no one else has been affected. That was a near miss.

134km 

Taylor Phinney leads the break onto the Eikenberg, the third of 17 climbs. The stones here are very jagged. The American looks very accomplished. The gap is 4'25.

138km 

First sighting of a bearded Brad Wiggins taking a sip of water on the front of the peloton. It will be interesting to see how much of a role the Sky rider plays today in his Flanders debut.

139km

It's a Trek/OPQS party on the front of the pack, working for the big favourites Boonen and Cancellara. If Boonen wins today, he'll make history in being the only rider with four Ronde victories to his name. If Cancellara win, he'll become the sixth man to have won the race on three occasions.

141km 

The Kortekeer is not cobbled, bit it does feature a section steeper than 20%. Nice addition to the race. Impey rejoins just ahead of the summit.

142km

The nine leaders (who have Impey in pursuit) approach the Kortekeer with 4'40 over the pack.

143km 

Punctures aplenty now: a third of the day for Johnny Hoogerland, the Dutch champion who now rides for Androni.

145km 

The next climb is the Kortekeer, which is short and sharp (800m at 6.9%). The leaders have five minutes over the peloton, but Daryl Impey has picked up a puncture and will need a rear wheel change.

146km 

The peloton is bunched up at the front after the first climb, with a long, weaving tail fighting to get back on. Quite a bit of damage was done in the end after that first of three ascents of the Oude-Kwaremont.

147km 

Salvatore Puccio of Sky has a problem with his chain and stops beside the VIP enclosure on the Kwaremont to deal with it. Bad luck for the Italian youngster.

148km 

The fans are out in their droves on the Oude-Kwaremont as the peloton stretches out. But the pace isn't too fast for this first of 17 climbs.

150km 

Omega Pharma-Quick Step are on the front of the peloton, with the huge unit of Guillaume Van Keirsbulck setting the pace. Frenchman Johan Le Bon (FDJ) is struggling on the back. He was one of the many riders who hit the deck earlier in the day.

151km

The leaders are onto the Oude-Kwaremont! Their arms are jangling with the grooves of the cobbles. It's the two Wanty riders - Van Landschoot and Wesley Kreder - who are setting the pace on the front, until Phinney and Kuchyncki take over the reins.

152km

The escapees are onto the narrow country lane ahead of the first climb. Davide Appollonio is no longer with these men - the Ag2R rider must have sat up after that earlier puncture.

153km 

Tom Boonen describes the Oude-Kwaremont - the Old Quarter Climb - as an "animal". It's the longest climb of the race at 2.2% and peaks out at 11%, with an average of 4.2%. The first quarter is asphalt and then the remainder is cobbled.

155km 

Zedenek Stybar has slowed to change his bike for Omega Pharma.

156km

Luca Paolini had a mechanical but he's back in the peloton thanks to some solid work by his Katusha team-mates.

158km 

We're onto the first helligen, or climb. It's not a cobbled one - just a slight mound out of town. Sky, Trek and Cannondale are near the front too.

160km

Omega Pharma-Quick Step are on the front of the peloton as the riders pass through the finish town of Oudenaarde for the first time. The gap is six minutes.

165km 

The first cobbled climb will be the Oude-Kwaremont, which features three times in this year's race. That's coming up in 15km.

168km

News coming in that Geraint Thomas was one of the riders who went down in that earlier crash. Sky's Welsh wonder is constantly in the wars - he seems to crash pretty much in every big race. He's got a cut to the face, apparently.

170km

The gap is up to six minutes for the leading 11 riders now. The race is now LIVE on British Eurosport and Eurosport Player.

180km

Taylor Phinney is in the break but BMC's eggs are all firmly in Greg van Avermaet's basket today. The American will hope to put in some solid training hours ahead of Pairs-Roubaix next week while acting as a springboard for his Belgian team-mate later on in the race.

185km 

The gap is over five minutes now for the 11 leaders. Appollonio punctured but is back with the escapees.

190km

Belkin's Sep Vanmarcke, who was second in Paris-Roubaix last year, was one of the riders to crash earlier today - but the Dutchman is still in the race. No such luck for Garmin-Sharp's Johan Vansummeren, the 2011 Roubaix champion, who has withdrawn from the race after what has proved to be a very chaotic start. The latest rumour is that a fan caused that crash by crossing the road at an inopportune moment.

196km

A reminder of the 11-man break that is riding with four minutes over the peloton: Stig Broeckx (Lotto Belisol), Davide Appolonio (Ag2R), Daryl Impey (Orica-GreenEdge), Raymond Kreder (Garmin-Sharp),Wesley Kreder (Wanty Group), Alexander Kuchynski (Katusha), Andrea Palini (Lampre Merida), Taylor Phinney (BMC), James Vanlandschoot (Wanty Group), Jelle Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen) and Romain Zingle (Cofidis).

198km

IAM Cycling will hope that French veteran Sylvain Chavanel has luck and the legs to make an impact today. The Swiss team have just lost Martin Elmiger following a heavy fall.

198km

Omega Pharma-Quick Step have a wealth of talent on standby should Tom Boonen not have the legs today. Zdenek Stybar is always a threat, while Guillauma van Keirsbulck will be on cloud nine following his Depanne overall victory and Niki Terpstra is in solid form. Stijn Vandenbergh, too, is a talent - although his huge frame is better suited to the flat cobbles of Roubaix.

200km

The leaders now have four minutes over the peloton with 200km remaining. Other favourites today? There's a lot of talk about two-time winner Stijn Devolder of Trek Factory Racing. If things don't work out for Fabian Cancellara, perhaps his team-mate will be on call to prosper. Devolder won in 2008 and 2009 and has been in solid form this season.

205km

British fans will be intrigued to see Bradley Wiggins' name on the start list today. Sir Wiggo is the only Grand Tour champion to take part in today's race as he looks to get in some cobble practice ahead of next week's Paris-Roubaix. The Sky rider was called up to the squad following Ian Stannard's injury last week.

208km

The gap is up to two minutes for the leaders. A crash in the peloton has resulted in numerous riders falling into a road-side ditch - including men from Belkin, Movistar and IAM.

210km 

The two Dutchmen Wesley Kreder (Wanty) and Raymond Kreder (Garmin) are not brothers but cousins. BMC's Phinney is an interesting presence in this group - the American is a real powerhouse and definitely has the engine to win a cobbled classic. Lieuwe Westra of Astana is in good form at the moment after winning the final stage in the Volta a Catalunya in rain-soaked Barcelona last week.

215km 

It's not Luca Paolini in the break, but his compatriot and near name-sake Andrea Palini of Lampre-Merida. Also there: Wallays, Broeckx, Zingle, Vanlandschoot, Phinney, Impey, W Kreder, R Kreder, Koetsjinski and Appollonio.

220km

BREAK: Around 10 riders have managed to extricate themselves from the peloton, including American Taylor Phinney (BMC) and Italian Luca Paolini (Katusha). Full details coming right up.

225km

Another big favourite today is the in-form Slovakian Peter Sagan. The Cannondale rider finished second behind Cancellara last year and won the opening stage last week in the Three Days of Depanne race. Could today see Sagan's first ever win in a Monument?

230km 

Some more news filtering through about that crash involving Durbridge: apparently the GreenEdge rider hit the deck quite hard and is on his way to hospital by ambulance. A terrible way for the Aussie to start/end his first ever Tour of Flanders.

235km 

The 199-strong peloton is still rolling along as one. No break has yet to form.

240km

WITHDRAW: Australian youngster Luke Durbridge has pulled out of the race after a crash. Bad luck for the Orica-GreenEdge man.

250km 

Last year, Switzerland's Fabian Cancellara won the Tour of Flanders for the second time after his maiden win in 2010. On both occasions he went on to win Paris-Roubaix one week later. Belgium's Tom Boonen has also achieved that famous double on two occasions (2005 and 2012). Boonen also won Flanders in 2006 to join the illustrious list of five riders who have won Flanders three times. Both Boonen and Cancellara are among the favorites for victory today.

259km

They're off! The 200 riders - 25 teams of eight - roll out of Bruges to get this show on the road.

10:10

On the agenda in today's 259km race from Brugge to Oudenaarde are 17 of those famous cobbled climbs, including the legendary Koppenberg, Taaienberg, Oude-Kwaremont and Paterberg climb. First up, the riders have just over 100km of largely flat racing through the Belgian countryside - then those leg-stretching, lung-busting climbs will start to hit them like a series of sucker punches.

10:05

There were grey clouds and slight drizzle at the start in Bruges so be prepared for a scrappy race - just how we like it.

10:00 

Welcome to live coverage of the second Monument of the season, the Ronde van Vlaanderen, or, to me and you, the Tour of Flanders.