Thursday, January 20, 2022
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Gent Six Days 2011 – Night Five

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We used to get to park the camper inside the old exhibition hall which adjoins the velodrome – but ‘safety’ means we have to park outside, adjacent to the old hall, for our work at the Gent Six Days 2011.

In the morning it means you have a long walk to the shower, previously you could lurch the 10 metres, zombie-like, to the shower cubicle and be reborn.

But I opted to stumble down to the paper shop to get the ‘Gentenaar‘ – it’s one of my sad rituals to buy l’Equipe and the Gazzetta at the Tour and Giro every day, and I do it in Gent, too.

Some of the sixes aren’t particularly well served by the local press, but in bike mad Flanders the Gentenaar rarely disappoints.

My shower was a life changing experience but I couldn’t understand why I could hear the Dernys up on the boards, early on a Saturday.

Phil and Jurgen was the reason – lapping away behind the buzzing little horrors in preparation for their evening pursuit match.

Gent Six Days 2011
Jurgen loosens the legs off before ‘battling’ Phil.

Gilbert is a nice man and no Diva, but after their training was over it was apparent he’s the Boss; Roelandts kept quietly in background with a little smile on his face – no doubt thinking of the Euro-stuffed envelope coming his way that night.

Gent Six Days 2011
A pretty healthy hourly rate for Phil today.

I got some time on the ‘net in the afternoon to catch up with world happenings in cycling.

I saw on Sporza that Nys won at Koksijde, but Pauwels wasn’t too chuffed about old Sven’s line in the finish sprint and was pretty vocal about it.

Gent Six Days 2011
Stybar’s bike says it all. Pic courtesy of Dave Martin.

Martin, Gill, John Anderson, Brian Dempster and Dave Martin all went up to the coast to watch it.I wished I had too, but there’s none of that R & R stuff for runners – especially at ‘t Kuipke.

Pauwels gub was firmly shut the next day at Gieten, when Sven nailed him fair and square.

My heart would love Sven to wear the rainbow jersey again – but my head says ‘Stybar.’

Gent Six Days 2011
Jurgen prepares for the ‘off’.
Gent Six Days 2011
Phil managed the race well – it was close until the last lap.
Gent Six Days 2011
Danny Stam was officially presented tonight, with his fellow riders lined up trackside.

But it was soon time for the UiV cup – that’s the U23 race.

The GB lads Owain Doull and Simon Yates had it pretty well sewn up.

GB has done well in the U23 with Carver/Law winning in ’08 and Kennaugh/Blythe in ’07.

Maurice Burton should have won in ’75 but his partner sold it – it was like that back then.

Gent Six Days 2011
A Belgian with a Scottish name: Tosh, waits for his punctured rear wheel to be replaced.

The pro chases seemed very ‘flat’ to me – or maybe I have on rose tinted specs for the ‘good old days’ with Sercu, Merckx, De Wilde, Risi, and Keisse?

But a sure sign is that there was ne’er a mention of lap or track re