Thursday, February 22, 2024

Gent Six Day 2010 – Nights Five and Six, Iljo-Schep Hold On

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HomeDiariesGent Six Day 2010 - Nights Five and Six, Iljo-Schep Hold On

Gent Six Day, Saturday morning… It’s snowing like Hell in Lichfield, Dan Fleeman just texted me to tell me, he’s doing four hours today.

Gent Six Day
The inside of Het Kuipke.

Gent?

The sun is splitting the sky, a glorious Flemish autumn morning – inside the Kuipke velodrome the industrial cleaning guys are scraping the scum of hot dog wrappers and Pils off the floor.

Gent Six Day
Saturday’s paper was all about Iljo.
Gent Six Day
New BC Academy boss Chris Newton popped by to see the u23’s in action.

I was up early today, tidied the cabin, sorted the washing, sorted the track side cabin and headed off for a coffee – sometimes you need out of the cabin.

The big cyclo-cross was on at Koksijde, today – it was on tele at Iljo’s dad’s bar. Neils Albert gained his first win of the year, he’ll be fancying his Worlds chances, now.

The papers were full of it on Sunday.

Gent Six Day
Indoors or out, the Belgians love their cycling.
Gent Six Day
Albert back on track for the Worlds.

And now it’s Monday morning, I’m sitting in some horrible ‘theme’ bar at Charleroi Airport.

My flight home to Edinburgh is cancelled due to the snow in Auld Scotia and the best I could wangle was Charleroi to Dublin, tonight then Dublin to Prestwick in the morning. My pal Dave has booked me into a hotel at Dublin airport, so I’m as sorted as I can be.

The alternative flight from here was late on Wednesday night.

The Six all seems a long time ago…

Gent Six Day
Franco salutes the crowd on Saturday night.
Gent Six Day
Aussie Luke Roberts ended up 10th, partnered with Morgan.
Gent Six Day
Etienne de Wilde visted us on Night Five.

Kris is off through the snows to Zurich, where Franco rides.

Gent Six Day
Smile for the press. (click for the full image)
Gent Six Day
Alex and Michael take the flowers for the Team Elimination on Night Five.

Michael is headed for Fuertaventura and the Saxo training camp.

Gent Six Day
Michael is off to the sun – he hopes.

Alex is going home to Girona then over to the HTC camp training in California at the start of December.

Like Ed, Jens-Erik wasn't a huge fan of the singer.
Like Ed, Jens-Erik wasn’t a huge fan of the singer.

Jens-Erik and Marc Hester should be home in Denmark by now, they took Michael’s car and track bikes home for him.

It’s the first six day I’ve worked at where we had no-one on the podium – a very ‘flat’ experience.

Morgan Kneisky checks in with the real world.
Morgan Kneisky checks in with the real world.
Gent Six Day
Danilo watches some YouTube to relax.
Danilo's bike is lush.
Danilo’s bike is lush. (click for the full image)

I wrote up and sent my copy between last night from the motorway and today standing in queues – I think I’m all out of Six Day chat, for the moment.

I’ll be fine for Rotterdam, my next venture assisting the, ‘Men of the Night.’

As a slice of life to taste, Gent was marvellous; new faces and friends; the reinforcement of old friendships; an interview with Danilo Hondo – and another huge batch of pictures and words.

Gent Six Day
Danilo messes with Ed – “No photos!”

But I have to wonder how many world class sportsmen would be happy to be housed in a steel storage cabin and treated like criminals by heavy handed drugs testers?

Please don’t misunderstand, drug tests should certainly take place; but not in track side cabins full of food, drink, cologne and embrocations, with Derny fumes filling the hall.

Gent Six 2010 winner Iljo gives his fans the photo.
Gent Six 2010 winner Iljo gives his fans the photo. (click for the full image)

The winner?

I have huge admiration for Iljo Keisse and the way he conducts his business as a professional; but for him to be allowed to come ‘back from the dead’ and win this six does little for the sport’s credibility.

In my opinion he should have cut a deal on ‘contaminated supplements’ taken a year’s ban and by now it would all be behind him.

To ‘suspend a suspension’ is something I’ve never heard of before – and there’s the very real risk that his win at the Kuipke could be annulled if the court cases don’t go his way.

But I’ve heard rumours that ‘people in high places’ are confidently predicting that Iljo will be riding the Spring Classics for Quick Step.

Gent Six Day
Pleased doesn’t begin to describe it, Ed.

I heard other rumours too that can’t be printed here but are most disconcerting and makes one wonder if the sport’s attitude to drugs has actually changes at all.

Among the young riders, I’m certain it has, but there are men in very high places in the sport who still think in the ‘old way,’ – in other words, the biggest mistake you can make with ‘kitting up,’ is to get caught.

And if you do get caught then all’s fair to get you off the hook.

But maybe I’m just tired, a little cynical and disappointed that none of our guys picked up the flowers.

If I was track side and the 70’s disco was pumping, the draft off the string was on my skin, there was good chat with Franco and the boys, the fans were roaring and the track centre was a living then – I guess I’d be just fine.

Thank you for reading; and if you’ve ever thought about going to the Gent six, make 2011 the year, you won’t regret it.

Night 5 Result

Sprints 1

1 Iljo Keisse (Bel) / Peter Schep (Ned) John Saey – Mega Deschacht 10 pts
2 Tim Mertens (Bel) / Pim Ligthart (Ned) Topsport Vlaanderen 8
3 Kenny De Ketele (Bel) / Leif Lampater (Ger) Mercator Verzekeringen 8
4 Franco Marvulli / Alexander Aeschbach (Swi) VDK 7
5 Luke Roberts (Aus) / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) ADMB 6
6 Alex Rasmussen / Michael Morkov (Den) Callant Verzekeringen – Santens 5
7 Sebastian Donadio (Arg) / Jeff Vermeulen (Bel) Geka Kaas – Oudendijk 5
8 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) AA Drink 5
9 Jens -Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) AVS 4
10 Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) / Andreas Müller (Ger) Euro Tyre 3
11 Jens Mouris / Wim Stroetinga (Ned) Caruur 3
12 Steven De Neef / Steve Schets (Bel) Provincie Oost-Vlaanderen 1
13 Robert Bartko / Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lotto 1

Team Elimination

1 Alex Rasmussen / Michael Morkov (Den) Callant Verzekeringen – Santens 20 pts
2 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) AA Drink 12
3 Kenny De Ketele (Bel) / Leif Lampater (Ger) Mercator Verzekeringen 10
4 Jens -Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) AVS 8
5 Tim Mertens (Bel) / Pim Ligthart (Ned) Topsport Vlaanderen 6
6 Robert Bartko / Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lotto 4
7 Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) / Andreas Müller (Ger) Euro Tyre
8 Sebastian Donadio (Arg) / Jeff Vermeulen (Bel) Geka Kaas – Oudendijk
9 Jens Mouris / Wim Stroetinga (Ned) Caruur
10 Franco Marvulli / Alexander Aeschbach (Swi) VDK
11 Luke Roberts (Aus) / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) ADMB
12 Iljo Keisse (Bel) / Peter Schep (Ned) John Saey – Mega Deschacht
13 Steven De Neef / Steve Schets (Bel) Provincie Oost-Vlaanderen

Flying Lap

1 Jens Mouris / Wim Stroetinga (Ned) Caruur 0:00:08.74
2 Alex Rasmussen / Michael Morkov (Den) Callant Verzekeringen – Santens 0:00:08.87
3 Tim Mertens (Bel) / Pim Ligthart (Ned) Topsport Vlaanderen 0:00:08.90
4 Iljo Keisse (Bel) / Peter Schep (Ned) John Saey – Mega Deschacht 0:00:08.93
5 Franco Marvulli / Alexander Aeschbach (Swi) VDK 0:00:08.94
6 Kenny De Ketele (Bel) / Leif Lampater (Ger) Mercator Verzekeringen 0:00:09.01
7 Sebastian Donadio (Arg) / Jeff Vermeulen (Bel) Geka Kaas – Oudendijk 0:00:09.11
8 Robert Bartko / Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lotto 0:00:09.13
9 Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) / Andreas Müller (Ger) Euro Tyre 0:00:09.15
10 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) AA Drink 0:00:09.16
11 Jens -Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) AVS 0:00:09.17
12 Luke Roberts (Aus) / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) ADMB 0:00:09.22
13 Steven De Neef / Steve Schets (Bel) Provincie Oost-Vlaanderen 0:00:09.41

Madison 1

1 Alex Rasmussen / Michael Morkov (Den) Callant Verzekeringen – Santens 20 pts
2 Iljo Keisse (Bel) / Peter Schep (Ned) John Saey – Mega Deschacht 12
3 Robert Bartko / Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lotto 10
4 Franco Marvulli / Alexander Aeschbach (Swi) VDK 8
5 Kenny De Ket