Britain’s former world champion Mark Cavendish won a sprint finish to claim the Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne semi-classic one-day race in Belgium on Sunday.

The Etixx-Quick Step rider made up for his teammates’ stunning defeat at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad the previous day when three riders were outsmarted by Team Sky’s Ian Stannard at the finish.

Cavendish, who also won this race in 2012, beat Norwegian Alexander Kristoff and Sky’s Italian sprinter Elia Viviani at the finish.

It was the Manxman’s sixth victory already this season.

The Spring Classics season began with Saturday’s Het Nieuwsblad, when Tom Boonen, Paris-Nice champion Niki Terpstra and Stijn Vandenbergh rode a poor tactical race to be outsmarted by Briton Stannard.

But the first full classic race of the season, the Milan-San Remo race, is on March 22. – Agence France-Presse

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