The European Six Day season opens on Monday in Amsterdam where Swiss pair Franco Marvulli and Bruno Risi will be back together for the first time since the Copenhagen Six Day last February. Risi and Marvulli won seven Six Day events and the Madison world championship title in 2007 and four Six Days in 2008 but had a falling out at the end of the year that led them to separate.
Risi is set to retire from racing, and the Swiss pair are scheduled to pair up again at the Zesdaagse van het Noorden before they have their last hurrah at the Six Day in Gent, Belgium at the end of November.
The duo will face stiff competition from an unusually strong Dutch contingent, which includes 21 riders from the home country of the 15 two-man teams.
Home favourite Danny Stam will break with tradition by teaming up with German Leif Lampater. Last year Stam won the event with partner Robert Slippens, but the latter has since retired from the sport.
Germans Robert Bartko and Roger Kluge will team up to create a formidable opponent. Bartko is a two-time Olympic gold medalist and four-time world champion, while Kluge, ten years Bartko's junior, won silver in the points race in the Beijing Games.
Leon Van Bon and Wim Stroetinga are possibly the strongest all Dutch pair, while Kenny Van Hummel, fresh from a successful road season, will team up with experienced Six Day rider Marc Hester of Denmark.
Recently retired roadie Aart Vierhouten will return to the boards alongside compatriot Jens Mouris, and Theo Bos will complete his switch from the sprint events to the endurance side of the sport by taking part with Peter Schep.
The pairing of Bos, a former match sprinter and seasoned Six Day man Schep is mirrored in that of Bobbie Traksel and Tim Veldt. The latter was a member of the Dutch world championship sprint team which took bronze in 2008, and will give the pair an advantage in the points sprints.
Belgians Iljo Keisse and Kenny De Ketele will team up for the Dutch event. Keisse is racing under the cloud of a doping positive which he has appealed.
The Amsterdam event also hosts a full range of events along with the elite men's division, including a women's Six Day. Road star Kirsten Wild will headline the women's races with Vera Koedooder. Britons Katie Cololough and Kate Cullen and American Cari Higgins will also take part.
The festivities include the UIV Talents Cup for under-25 riders as well as a mini-3 day for juniors and the ever popular Sprint Cup featuring Olympians Gregory Bauge and Teun Mulder.
Start list for Amsterdam:
Danny Stam (Ned) / Leif Lampater (Ger)
Leon Van Bon (Ned) / Wim Stroetinga (Ned)
Robert Bartko (Ger) / Roger Kluge (Ger)
Bruno Risi (Swi) / Franco Marvulli (Swi)
Theo Bos (Ned) / Peter Schep (Ned)
Kenny De Ketele (Bel) / Iljo Keisse (Bel)
Kenny Van Hummel (Ned) / Marc Hester (Den)
Aart Vierhouten (Ned) / Jens Mouris (Ned)
Bobbie Traksel (Ned) / Tim Veldt (Ned)
Matthe Pronk (Ned) / Jos Pronk (Ned)
Pim Ligthart (Ned) / Jeff Vermeulen (Ned)
Ismael Kip (Ned) / Roy Pieters (Ned)
Sebastian Donato (Arg) / Elia Viviani (Ita)
Michael Vingerling (Ned) / Nick Stopler (Ned)
Geert-Jan Jonkman (Ned) / Arno van der Zwet (Ned)
Follow Cyclingnews on Twitter for the very latest coverage of events taking place in the cycling world - twitter.com/cyclingnewsfeed.