Mark Cavendish exits Ghent Six on stretcher after crash in Madison

Mark Cavendish and Lasse Norman Hansen crashed early in the final event of Ghent Six on Sunday evening, with Cavendish being removed from the side of the track on a stretcher as a precautionary measure. The Manxman stood under his own power and waved to the crowd at 't Kuipke, Sporza reported.

Racing was neutralised while repairs were made to the track. According to Jasper De Buyst, who narrowly missed going down as well, he noticed a damp area on the track just one lap before the crash.

"Stupid that it has to happen like this. I had noticed the lap before that there was some water, but then I ran over it at a slower speed. The next round it went completely wrong," De Buyst told Sporza.

Kenny DeKetele appeared to be the first rider to encounter the moisture on the track, swerving abruptly which caused Hansen to go down first. Cavendish then crashed as well, as he was not able to avoid the Danish rider.

Organisers resumed racing after a 40-minute delay, with competition going into the last 50 laps. Cavendish's teammate Iljo Keisse continued alone.

Hansen was able to resume racing with his teammate Michael Mørkøv, the pair in the GC lead, but Hansen said, "I don't feel great, my body is quite stiff. I did get the doctor's approval to continue, but I'm already feeling better."

The men's Madison was the final event for the 80th Lotto Zesdaagse Vlaanderen-Gent. At the time of the crash, Keisse and Cavendish were in fourth place in the event, two laps behind leaders Roger Kluge and De Buyst, and in the general classification were also in fourth place. Pair Kenny De Ketele and Robbe Ghys were second on GC and the duo of Kluge and De Buyst were third overall. 

The Deceuninck-QuickStep team said on social media the team would share updates about Cavendish when the information is available.

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