Thursday, January 20, 2022
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Gent Six Day 2010 – Fourth Night, Big Bob and Danny Take Over

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I’m working at the Gent Six Day 2010, and last year’s Under 25 winner, big Aussie, Alex Carver just landed on the boards, somewhere close to my right ear.

Gent Six Day 2010
Alex Carver is scraped off the boards.

Meanwhile, down in the cabin, all of our guys sleep peacefully.

Gent Six Day 2010
The view as you climb to your seat in the Kuipke.

It was mozzarella and ham salad followed by chicken and spaghetti for dinner and a post dinner nap (on the floor) is the last luxury they’ll enjoy, tonight.

Gent Six Day 2010
Dirk preps the bikes for the time trial.
Gent Six Day 2010
It’s not exactly luxurious behind the scenes – here’s Marc trying to find space to stretch.
Gent Six Day 2010
Franco just makes-do in his cabin.

Sure enough, the race hasn’t long started and the dope test guys arrive – just like Elliot Ness and the Untouchables; but without the Armani suits – one guy tells me his day job is a plumber – the riders are suitably underwhelmed.

There are eight of them, they’re clad in hi-viz vests emblazoned with ‘Doping Control’ and are anything but low key.

Gent Six Day 2010
A less than subtle UCI Anti-Doping squad descends on the cabins mid-race.

One of them, with no little arrogance, plonks himself down in Alex and Michael’s cabin.

One of the Flemish journos asks; ‘So, we stop now in the Tour de France at 100km into the stage, and all the guys must piss in the bottle?

He has a point – why not wait for a pause in the racing? or until the racing is finished?

Gent Six Day 2010
Franco is very organised, and keeps his documentation to hand.

Those who know also reckon that the tests are of questionable validity if conducted in an environment like this – with Dernys buzzing around, food, drink, contaminants and people everywhere; he advises that the riders should write on the forms the circumstances of the test.