Six Day Series so far
29 March 2018
As Six Day riders and fans prep their pre-tan and slap on the sun creaM, it feels like the right time to reflect on the series so faR AND gear up for the finale in Mallorca.
Six Day London
Six Day fans got their first glimpse of Mark Cavendish back on the track since his runner-up finish in 2016 and the Manxman was once again made to settle for second place, this time with team-mate Peter Kennaugh as Aussies Cameron Meyer and Callum Scotson proved they were the true masters of the Madison.
Defending champions Moreno de Pauw and Kenny de Ketele waltzed into London with a reputation to uphold as arguably the best Six Day riders on the planet, but a host of the world’s best stood in their way.
The Belgian boys set their stalls out early on with a lead after the first day but found themselves trading blows with the relentless Australians as Meyer and Scotson proved taking laps for them was as easy as taking candy from a baby.
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Meanwhile, Cavendish and Kennaugh showed there were none better at amassing points as they slotted in between the Australians and Belgians come the final standings, setting Cav up for a third shot at London glory later this year.
Katie Archibald bossed the women’s elite series from start to finish, opening with two victories in the 10km scratch and elimination races before an omnium win rubber-stamped her dominance on the London boards for a second year running.
British duo Neah Evans and Emily Nelson – second and third, respectively – enjoyed their own piece of Six Day history as they won the inaugural women’s Madison.
Kiwi duo Ethan Mitchell and Eddie Dawkins made the English capital their home and left with scores of new fans as the Olympic medallists’ daily head-to-head clashes left fans on the edge of their seats and begging for more in the men’s sprint.
And after a couple of beers on the startline, in true Six Day fashion, Dawkins eventually proved himself king of the Kiwis.
Six Day Berlin
Dutch duo Yoeri Havik and Wim Stroetinga bagged themselves a second successive Six Day Berlin crown in a breathless finish, pipping de Ketele and de Pauw down into second by an agonising six points.
Havik and Stroetinga edged the standings on day one with no laps taken and it was soon clear that few pairings were prepared to give up the chase easily with Swiss riders Tristan Marguet and Nico Selenati, Germans Roger Kluge and Theo Reinhardt, and Leif Lampater and Christian Grasmann each holding firm in a battle for points.
By the final day the Dutch and Belgian pairings had come to the fore in the Madisons, proving that no amount of points could make up for their unyielding pursuit of laps, with Havik and Stroetinga riding out victorious in the final race.
French rider Laurie Berthon won the women’s event, showing her strength over a series of individual races and beating Italy’s Maria Giulia Confalonieri down into second place, with Lisa Klein in third.
Berthon’s fast start was the key to her success, winning two of three races on the opening day before another 10km points race victory on day two, though she missed out on an omnium win with that glory instead going to Canada’s Allison Beveridge.
Confalonieri did enjoy success in the Madison, pairing up with compatriot Elisa Balsamo to beat Beveridge and Jasmin Duehring into second, with Germany’s Lisa Kullmer and Romy Kasper in third.
Max Levy was a familiar champion in the sprints, claiming a seventh title in his home country while multiple world champion Kristina Vogel won the first ever women’s sprint event in Berlin, winning all but one race over three days of complete superiority.
Six Day Copenhagen
There was a rare treat for Six Day watchers as de Ketele and de Pauw found themselves going head-to-head in Denmark, with the former taking the ultimate glory alongside crowd favourite Michael Morkov.
De Ketele and Morkov switched positions with de Pauw and Dutchman Havik on a near-daily basis, and it was the latter pairing who were in the driving seat heading into the final day despite some thrilling head-to-head victories for the former – none more so that de Ketele’s bettering of de Pauw in a race-winning team elimination sprint on day two.
In the end it came down to the final Madison and in an outrageous display of endurance sprinting, Morkov proved himself to be MVP once again on his home boards, knocking the leaders back into second overall.
The veteran Dane won five consecutive mid-race sprints for points to overturn a deficit and claim his seventh win in Copenhagen and a first for de Ketele.
German-Danish duo Leif Lampater and Marc Hester had threatened to spoil the party at one point, but they finished back in third, seven laps down on the champions.
The women’s race was a Canadian one-two as Beveridge and Maggie Coles-Lyster edged the win over Duehring and Stephanie Roorda, drawing on 46 points at the finish.
The two teams began steadily before winning two races apiece on the second day of competition to set themselves apart before shoring things up on the final day.
Once again, however, the home crowd was given something to cheer as Danish of Julie Leth and Trine Schmidt won themselves the women’s Madison in their final race of the event.
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