Stars of Six Day: Steven Burke and Chris Latham
18 June 2018
One’s a Six Day London runner-up, the other a two-time Olympic champion – and together Chris Latham and Steven Burke are a force du jour when it comes to the boards.
Both riders have World, European and Commonwealth medals in their locker, with the vastly experienced Burke no stranger to the rostrum when the stakes are high.
So who better to take to the floor as the latest Six Day Stars…
BRILLIANT BURKE’S ENDURING SUCCESS
As well as being part of the Olympic-gold winning quartet at London 2012 and Rio 2016, team pursuit specialist Burke, 30, is a 2012 world champion, one of six medals he has from the global stage, along with four silvers and a bronze.
His Olympic glories came off the back of an individual pursuit bronze in Beijing, one of two Brits on that podium after Bradley Wiggins powered to victory.
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But that wasn’t all as the subsequent Olympic final efforts came in world record time as Britain established itself as the nation to beat in the velodrome.
LATHAM ADDING TO MEDAL COLLECTION
The younger Latham, still only 24, is carving out a name for himself in the scratch race, with bronzes in both the 2017 Worlds and the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast earlier this year.
The former win was in only his second ever World Championships, where he crossed the line above some stellar names and was only bettered by Poland’s Adrian Teklinski and German Lucas Liss.
His first major medal came in the 2015 European Championships in Grenchen, finishing third in the elimination race behind Frenchman Bryan Coquard and Simone Consonni of Italy.
A PARTNERSHIP TO FEAR
Burke and Latham were paired together for the first time at Six Day London 2017 – with a podium place firmly within their sights.
Despite the overall title being beyond them, they still had their moments in the spotlight and showed the beery hoards in the stands just what they are all about, powering to victory in the team elimination, 250m Madison time trial and the 60-lap Derny B final on the last day of competition in the capital.
Latham had earlier seized individual success, claiming victory in the 40-lap Derby Race on day three, with the pair also winning the team elimination on the opening day.
“IT’S THE ONE THAT STICKS OUT FOR ME”
While the stakes are undoubtedly higher at a World Championships or an Olympics, there is a unique beery buzz about the Six Day Series which cannot be replicated in any other arena.
Asked about his favourite Six Day memories, Latham has a fair few.
“I’ve got really good memories from the last couple of years,” he said.
“It’s definitely the race that my family come down to watch. It’s the one in England that is known for its atmosphere – especially over the last few nights, it’s unbelievable.
“There was an elimination race that I did with Ollie in the first year and Ollie slung me in with half a lap to go and I had to close 50m or something and I just got Keisse on the line – it was dead good.
“There was a big build up to it and it looked like I was going to lose, but it was great, it’s the one that sticks out for me.”
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