Missing the first Six Day held in London for 35 years is something that frustrates Mark Cavendish but the Manx Missile is looking to make amends this year as he and Sir Bradley Wiggins go in search of glory in October.
The British duo, who will both be in action for Team GB at next month’s Olympic Games, lined up alongside each other at Lee Valley VeloPark in March when they claimed the World Track Championship’s Madison title and they will be returning to the London 2012 venue later this year when they look to dethrone Kenny de Ketele and Moreno de Pauw.
Cavendish – who earlier today equalled Bernard Hinault’s 28 Tour de France stage wins to have only Eddy Merckx (on 34) left to catch – was an ambassador during last year’s event and saw firsthand how Six Day London provided fans with an experience not witnessed on these shores before.
Cavendish said: “I was super disappointed to miss out last year and I won’t ever get that chance to ride the inaugural one. But seeing how it was, it was spectacular. And to see the young Brits up there fighting for the win was nice.
“It’s an amazing atmosphere. It’s been a long time since Six Day was in London and to bring that back was brilliant and it was done superbly.
“You could see on the faces on the fans that they were having a good time, not just with the bike racing but with everything that was going on.
“I was sad not to be a part of it and I’m super excited for it this year.”
Six Day racing sees some of the world’s top cyclists race in a number of different events over the course of six nights, all to the soundtrack of a leading DJ and with fans cheering on, beers in hand.
One of the highlights of last year’s event was the performances of the British riders: youngster Mark Stewart won the 1878 Cup on the opening night and Chris Latham and Ollie Wood came second overall.
Cavendish was full of praise for their performances but has warned his fellow countrymen there will be an even greater challenge this time around.
The 31-year-old said: “I think some of the younger lads have done really well and they will be gunning for the big scalps again.
“But I think the thing we’ve got is the experience. It’s easy to go ahead after the first couple of nights but that’s what makes Six Day racing special is the endurance needed to sustain that for six nights.
“I’m confident we can build throughout the week. I’m not sure we’ll just come in and be dominant straight from the beginning. But we’re going to be looking to try and win the London Six Day.”
Six Day London takes place between 25-30 October 2016 at Lee Valley VeloPark on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Half term fun, with or without the kids. Tickets on sale now at www.sixday.com