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Gent Six Day set for dramatic finale with four pairs on same lap

Iljo Keisse and teammate Mark Cavendish in full flight at the 2019 Gent Six
Iljo Keisse and teammate Mark Cavendish in full flight at the 2019 Gent Six (Image credit: Getty Images)

The Gent Six Day is set to come down to a dramatic finale in 'T Kuipke velodrome on Sunday evening, with four pairs on the same lap heading into the final day of racing. 

On the fifth day on Saturday, Jasper De Buyst and Tosh Van der Sande took the overall lead from Kenny De Ketele and Robbe Ghys. However, De Ketele and Ghys are just one point behind and are on the same lap, as are the pairings of Mark Cavendish-Iljo Keisse and Roger Kluge-Theo Reinhardt. 

De Buyst-Van der Sande have 238 points, with De Ketele-Ghys on 237, Cavendish-Keisse on 224, and Kluge-Reinhardt on 169. In theory, any of the four pairings could still claim victory on Sunday night. 

De Ketele and Ghys started well on Saturday with victory in the Madison Elimination race but De Buyst and Van der Sande went on to win the main Madison event. Keisse and Kluge scored important points in the Derny races, before the final Madison race - in which Jan-Willem van Schip and Yoeri Havic came out on top - saw De Buyst and Van de Sande inch ahead of De Ketele and Ghys in the overall standings. 

The women's omnium event was won convincingly by the world champion, Kirsten Wild. The Dutchwoman won the scratch race, tempo race, and elimination race to top the standings ahead of Jolien d'Hoore and Lotte Kopecky. 

The tempo race was marred by another serious crash, with Simona Frapporti stretchered away to hospital. Also caught up in the crash, though without injury, was Shari Bossuyt, girlfriend of Gerben Thijssen, who was admitted to intensive care after a crash on the opening night.

There have been a number of crashes at the event so far, with Cavendish among the fallers, and the racing had to be halted on Friday when a spectator spilled a beer onto the track

On Wednesday, para-cyclists Kris Bosmans and Diederick Schelfhout crashed over the upper railing into the stands, Bosman suffering a complex fracture to his femur, and Shelfhout a fractured vertebra. One spectator was injured in the incident.

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Deputy Editor - Europe. Patrick is an NCTJ-trained journalist who has seven years’ experience covering professional cycling. He has a modern languages degree from Durham University and has been able to put it to some use in what is a multi-lingual sport, with a particular focus on French and Spanish-speaking riders. After joining Cyclingnews as a staff writer on the back of work experience, Patrick became Features Editor in 2018 and oversaw significant growth in the site’s long-form and in-depth output. Since 2021 he has been Deputy Editor - Europe, taking more responsibility for the site’s content as a whole, while still writing and - despite a pandemic-induced hiatus - travelling to races around the world. Away from cycling, Patrick spends most of his time playing or watching other forms of sport - football, tennis, trail running, darts, to name a few, but he draws the line at rugby.