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Speed weekend 2014 - Omloop van Borsele & Dwars door de Westhoek

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We're still in the low countries for a big weekend of racing, for elite women - and a three-day junior women's stage race. This is a minimalist preview - but look to the comments, where we can add updates, videos and results etc as they happen!

EPZ Omloop van Borsele

I listened to the music in that promo and thought of Monty.....

I've said this before, but while  Wikipedia describes the best-known features of the Borsele area as a nuclear power station and radioactive waste dump, they're wrong - it's all about the bike racing!  We're in the very flat (below sea-level!) Zeeland province - a whole weekend of racing, with an ITT and a 1.2 road race for the elite women, a junior women's stage race, and a junior men's race.

This race is fantastic at keeping us up to date - those tickers are great, the website has a ton of information on it, as does their facebook, and the race twitter is a great one.  They also are one of those races that makes their own media - for the last few years they're put video from the finish-line cameras onto their YouTube, very quickly.

Here's the preview of the ITT from ORICA-AIS, and keep an eye on their site for more previews as the weekend progresses

The women's road race is the same loop as always - 5 laps of 23-ish km, totally flat, with vicious North Sea winds and some nasty corners - last year Kirsten Wild, who knows this race inside out, having won it every year between 2008 & 2011, crashed hard and broke her shoulder (finishing the race in 20th!).  For a more in-depth preview, head to Velofocus.  And here's last year's race highlights:

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Dwars door de Westhoek, Sunday 27th, 1.1

The final race of the weekend is back in the Belgian cycling heartland, with a couple of familiar cobbled climbs, Monteberg and Kemelberg from Gent-Wevelgem.   There are three climbs in the 125km race - but they're all in the first 60km, so this could be one for the breakaway artists, or one for the bunch sprinters.  It's the mid-point of the Lotto Cycling Cup series, so whatever happens, expect to see the Belgian riders out in force!  Here's the Velofocus preview, ORICA-AIS' preview, and the startlist, and more information on the race website and facebook.

We're likely to get video from this - here's the AndreandCo video from last year

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Phew!  SO much racing!  Follow it all with my twit-list, and please do add anything you see into the comments - and I'll pull together a collection of everything we find, sometime next week......  enjoy!