Belgians seal incredible Madison comeback to take Copenhagen glory
06 February 2019
Kenny De Ketele and Moreno De Pauw roared to Six Day Copenhagen victory against all the odds.
Heading into the Final Madison Chase, the Belgian pair trailed Michael Morkov and Oliver Wulff Frederiksen by 91 points on the Danes home track.
Add that to De Ketele’s ongoing collar bone complaint and De Pauw’s tricky preparation, his wife having given birth just a fortnight ago, the odds looked impossibly steep.
But they somehow dug deep to stay in touch on laps and a defining gain 50 laps from the climax earned them incredible victory.
“I could never expect this – I just know I worked really hard,” said injury-hit De Ketele.
“I’ve been many hours on the rollers thinking what am I doing, why am I trying?
“When I experience this moment, it’s all worth it. It all worked out perfect.
“We could use our experience in this one. In the end the whole plan came together and the last 20 laps were on motivation and willpower. It worked out, so it’s wonderful.”
The duo starred on Day Two, claiming two sprint victories and keeping a weather eye on points and laps on Day Three to hold onto the lead.
Despite relinquishing top spot to Morkov and Wulff on Sunday night, their Monday derny win was symbolic of the way they expended energy to remain in sight of the leaders.
Morkov and Wulff’s cavernous points lead meant their rivals had to go all-out attack and gain laps en route to victory – that’s exactly what the Belgians did.
The Danes can take a huge degree of satisfaction from their performance, particularly 18-year-old Wulff who looks a really star in the making.
Wuulf said: “I wasn’t expecting anything, I’m just happy to be racing in Copenhagen.
“We were hoping for the top spot in the end, but second place is alright.”
A dual between the Morkov brothers was yet another intriguing subplot that kept the Danish crowd on the edge of their seats, played out in the Derny Revenge 60-lap contest.
Jesper Morkov edged out Michael on the line – indeed, the 30-year-old showed remarkable bravery to take to the boards in spite of a serious injury in Monday night’s brutal Madison.
The Ballerup Super Arena rose to salute the Dane’s firm friend Christian Grasmann, taking part in his final Six Day contest, with Morkov deciding to race in tribute to his pal.
“Christian will be a friend to me for lifetime,” said Jesper.
“After the bad crash, I wasn’t sure I could come back. But I wanted to come out and help fight to get Christian a good last result.”
Grassman and Morkov dug in to stay in touch for the first half of the Final Chase but couldn’t quite round off the fairytale, perishing midway through to a move from the top three.
Poland’s speedsters were out in force, claiming white-hot victories and picking up points in the Longest Lap and Lap Record Time Trial.
Adrian Teklinski was fastest finger first after the starters gun went in the Longest Lap, edging out Moritz Malcharek.
Malcharek would resurge to claim his second Giant Sprint victory of Six Day Copenhagen, recapturing the form he showed alongside Sebastian Schmiedel on the opening day.
And Poles were apart once again in the Time Trial.
Just as Wuulf Frederiksen and Morkov looked certain to add to their colossal points tally, leading with one pair left to race, Bartosz Rudyk and Szymon Krawzyk snatched victory.