Watch: Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2018 highlights

Video highlights from the 2018 edition of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, the opening race of the cobbled classics in Belgium

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Playlist 19 Videos Watch: Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2018 highlights 03:02 Watch: Dwars Door Vlaanderen 2018 highlights 02:48 Pro bike: John Degenkolb's new custom Trek Domane (video) 01:32 Relive Geraint Thomas's win at E3 Harelbeke in 2015 (video) 09:54 Watch: Relive Ian Stannard's amazing Het Nieuwsblad win from last year (video) 12:32 Tom Boonen unfazed about being on the brink of cobbled Classic history (video) 03:33 Sean Kelly on riding the cobbles: 'You have to be crazy to win here' (video) 05:43 Watch: Taking on the toughest climbs of the Tour of Flanders 13:52 The Lead Out: April 2019 - Cobbled Classics preview 36:50 The Lead Out: March 2019 - Milan-San Remo preview 34:48 Watch: Tour of Oman 2019 stage two highlights 06:33 Watch: Tour Down Under 2019 stage six highlights 05:38 Watch: Tour Down Under 2019 stage five highlights 00:00 Watch: Tour Down Under 2019 stage two highlights 05:23 Watch: Tour Down Under 2019 stage one highlights 04:49 The Lead Out: January 2019 - Tour Down Under and season preview 25:30 Watch: The best bits of the 2018 Tour de France 07:54 Watch: Tour de France 2018 stage 21 highlights 03:53 Watch: 2018 Tour de France stage 20 highlights 04:18

Guidance: Video contains one incidence of bad language

Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday, February 24, signals the start of the cobbled classics season in northern Europe.

The Belgian single-day race always generates a lot of attention among both fans and riders, offering a series of climbs and cobbled road sectors which shape the action.

The route features 13 ‘hellingen’ (climbs), three of which are on cobbles – and the intensity gradually increases.

The final two ‘walls’, 26km from the finish, are the iconic Muur van Geraardsbergen (475 metres, 9.3 per cent, max 19.8 per cent) and the partly-cobbled Bosberg (980m, 5.8 per cent, max 11 per cent).

Following the Bosberg, there will be a final 12km to go before the line.

>>> Cobbled Classics: Latest news, reports and race info

Previous winners include some of the biggest names in Classics racing, including Greg Van Avermaet, Philippe Gilbert, Ian Stannard, Sep Vanmarcke, Peter Van Petegem, Johan Museuuw, Eddy Merckx, Freddy Maertens and Roger De Vlaeminck.

This year’s edition will feature Vanmarcke, Van Avermaet, Gilbert and a host of fresh classics talent who are hunting for a big win.

The race is followed by Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne on Sunday, which follows a less hilly route and is traditionally one that suits sprinters more.