Only in Grenoble” is stamped in red on this file – a track standstill competition.

If Vik was here he’d rush the track shouting bad things about la Belle France, the French, and their ways.

A track standstill - the rules don't allow long ones anymore, except here.
A track standstill - the rules don't allow long ones anymore, except here. (click for the full image)

We’ve got 15 minutes on the clock and Daniel Mangeas hasn’t stopped talking for more than a few seconds as the big men twitch their muscles to keep those Looks stationary on the pine.

I know a little French but can’t summon up the interest to listen; the crowd adore it….

I didn’t feel good when I woke up, today.

It’s really awkward when you waken up in the ‘death pod’ at the back of the Transit camper, you have to bend double to crawl out.

I was so tired last night that I woke up with my credentials still around my neck.

I stumbled across to the bakers, bought the baguettes, hobbled back to the camper then let gravity take me down to the cabin.

But a shower and a coffee from Franco’s espresso machine, and all’s well… get a bit of Northern Soul (The Elgins; “Nothing Worse Than Being Alone“) on the laptop, and it’s just perfect.

We have good morale in the cabin; Franco’s dad is Italian, so he has that Latino appetite for life. He rides on his morale – if it’s good then there are few who can beat him in a six day.

Franco makes the headlines.
Franco makes the headlines. (click for the full image)
What Franco's reading.
What Franco's reading. (click for the full image)

Jens-Erik is much quieter but once you get to know him he’s good fun, his humour is more subtle than Franco’s but it all gels nicely to give a good vibe in the cabin.

Sports psychologists will tell you that the ‘hungry fighter’ is a myth – an athlete will always perform best when all the different factors in their life are calm, organised and as they want them to be.

That’s why a good atmosphere in the cabin is essential.

Marc and Jens-Erik are leading, and enjoying themselves.
Marc and Jens-Erk are leading, and enjoying themselves. (click for the full image)

…. and Bauge wins!

With 20 stationary minutes on the clock; not as grim as the time I remember Arnaud Tournant holding the stand here for 37 minutes – that one really brought the house down.

Kris was talking to Bernard Thevenet tonight and the two times Tour winner – who’s a nice guy, very sympatico – was saying that he feels a bit sad when he sees the track centre diners taking more interest in the circus cabaret than they are in the six days.

The Divino singers are going down well with the crowd.
The Divino singers are going down well with the crowd.

Kris agreed but reminded him that at least there is a six days here, not like at Stuttgart, Dortmund, Munich or any of the rest which have fallen by the wayside.

It’s Danny Stam’s first time here and apparently, he’s not knocked out by it – but like Kris says; ‘where else is he going to ride?

Frenchman Morgan Kneisky.
Frenchman Morgan Kneisky. (click for the full image)
Marc came down tonight, but was unhurt.
Marc came down tonight, but was unhurt. (click for the full image)
Laurent Biondi checks that Marc is okay.
Laurent Biondi checks that Marc is okay. (click for the full image)

I feel a little guilty about all these pictures I keep taking of the Folies girls; but it’s the ‘Pippo syndrome’ – like him, they’re just so photogenic that you can’t help yourself.

Well, Six Days are a team event.
Well, Six Days are a team event. (click for the full image)
Milan Kadlec.
Milan Kadlec. (click for the full image)

Form-wise, the Italians Viviani & Ciccone look good, they lead early today; so do the Czechs, Kadlec & Hochmann.

Dutch number two team Vermeulen & Stroetinga (above) are now six laps back and out of it.
Dutch number two team Vermeulen & Stroetinga (above) are now six laps back and out of it. (click for the full image)

De Ketele & Mertens from Belgium are consistent, strong boys.

Danny Stam and Leon Van Bon, the other Dutch team, don’t look like they have it.

Danes Hester and Madsen are going well here, solid.

Personal illumination, for when chase is on and the house lights are down.
Personal illumination, for when chase is on and the house lights are down.
Morgan slings partner Mickaël Jeannin into the chase.
Morgan slings partner Mickaël Jeannin into the chase. (click for the full image)

Franco & Alexander Aeschbach are, “riding at 80%” and I can’t see past them for the win.

The podium? – Switzerland, Italy, Belgium.

Best sort out me pictures, à: demain.

Marc Hester's front Zipp will need a little TLC.
Marc Hester's front Zipp will need a little TLC. (click for the full image)

Results

Points race

1 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita) 11 pts
2 Wim Stroetinga / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned) 10
3 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) 10
4 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi) 8
5 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel) 7
6 Kevin Fouache / Jules Pijourlet (Fra) 6
7 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 5
8 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) 4
9 François Lamiraud / Florent Ivars (Fra) 4
10 Jiri Hochmann / Milan Kadlec (Cze) 1
11 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra)

Time trial

1 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita) 34.989
2 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) 35.513
3 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel) 35.985
4 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi) 36.256
5 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 36.266
6 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) 37.580
7 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra) 39.393

Elimination red numbers

1 Jeff Vermeulen 10 pts
2 Kenny De Ketele 6
3 Leon Van Bon 5
4 Milan Kadlec 4
5 Morgan Kneisky 3
6 Sebastien Ivars 2
7 Marc Hester
8 Elia Viviani
9 Jules Pijourlet
10 Florent Ivars
11 Franco Marvulli

Scratch race

1 Kevin Fouache / Jules Pijourlet (Fra) 10 pts
2 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) 6
3 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra) 5
4 François Lamiraud / Florent Ivars (Fra) 4
5 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 3
6 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita) 2
7 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi)
8 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned)
9 Wim Stroetinga / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned)
10 Jiri Hochmann / Milan Kadlec (Cze)
11 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel)

Defi doublette

1 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) 20 pts
2 Wim Stroetinga / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned) 12
At 1 Lap
3 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi) 10
4 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) 8
5 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 6
6 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel) 4
7 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra)
8 François Lamiraud / Florent Ivars (Fra)
9 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita)
10 Jiri Hochmann / Milan Kadlec (Cze)
11 Kevin Fouache / Jules Pijourlet (Fra)

Elimination black numbers

1 Jens-Erik Madsen 10 pts
2 Tim Mertens 6
3 Stam Danny 5
4 Win Stroetinga 4
5 Francois Lamiraud 3
6 Kevin Fouache 2
7 Pierre-Luc Perichon
8 Alexander Aeschbach
9 Mickael Jeannin
10 Jiri Hochmann
11 Angelo Ciccone

Team elimination

1 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel) 20 pts
2 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 12
3 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi) 10
4 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita) 8
5 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) 6
6 Jiri Hochmann / Milan Kadlec (Cze) 4
7 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra)
8 Wim Stroetinga / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned)
9 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra)
10 Kevin Fouache / Jules Pijourlet (Fra)
11 François Lamiraud / Florent Ivars (Fra)

Overall standings after night three

1 Tim Mertens / Kenny de Ketele (Bel) 160 pts
2 Angelo Ciccone / Elia Viviani (Ita) 154
3 Jens-Erik Madsen / Marc Hester (Den) 151
4 Danny Stam / Leon Van Bon (Ned) 151
5 Alexander Aeschbach / Franco Marvulli (Swi) 151
6 Jiri Hochmann / Milan Kadlec (Cze) 112
At 1 Lap
7 Mickaël Jeannin / Morgan Kneisky (Fra) 100
At 6 Laps
8 Wim Stroetinga / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned) 72
At 8 Laps
9 Pierre-Luc Perichon / Sebastien Ivars (Fra) 23
At 10 Laps
10 Kevin Fouache / Jules Pijourlet (Fra) 36

The leaderboard at the end of Night Three.
The leaderboard at the end of Night Three. (click for the full image)