After claiming a memorable Madison title at the Track World Championships earlier this year, Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish will team up once again, returning to the scene of their triumph, at the Six Day London event in October.
Cavendish confirmed his participation a couple of months ago but Wiggins was added to the bill on Tuesday to form, as he put it, “the double act everyone wants to see”.
Ever since their ill-fated Madison ride at the 2008 Olympic Games, the careers of two of the biggest personalities in the history of British cycling have entwined themselves, culminating in that feel-good victory in the London Velodrome. Wiggins, who had noted that he and Cavendish had 'conquered the world' in the intervening eight years, said this year's Six Day could be the last time they compete alongside one another.
“It’s going to be great. This has got to be the double act everyone wants to see isn’t it?" said the 36-year-old.
"Winning the Madison at the Worlds was incredible and this might well be the last chance that people get to see us together.”
With the roof having been blown off the Lee Valley VeloPark during the Madison victory in March, Wiggins joked that they’d have to put in some six day appearances – “like the old days of Merckx and Sercu”. Cavendish, who helped launch the Six Day London last year, revealed that was exactly the idea he had put to his partner.
"One of the first things I said to Brad after we won the Madison on the track in London was, 'We have to do London Six Day together'," said Cavendish.
“The Six Day experience is something else - the atmosphere will be right up there with the World Championships, the music's loud and the racing is brutal. It’ll be great to team up with Brad again and we’ll be going for the win.”
The Six Day London celebrated its inaugural edition last year in what was the first England’s capital had seen of the track racing format in 35 years.
Coming in the wake of the Olympic Games in Rio, this year’s event will be something of a homecoming, as the pair return to the British boards for the first time, potentially armed with medals to celebrate in front of home crowds.
“I grew up with the Six Day. I know it’s full on, brilliant for spectators, as well as bloody tough to ride. It has always been a big deal in Europe so it’s only right that they’ve finally brought it back to London,” added Wiggins, who will make his debut six-day appearance on home soil.
“I was gutted not to be able to ride it last year, but this year the timing just fits so I’m hoping it will be a great way to celebrate a successful fifth Olympic Games, back in London.”