Morkov facing disruption to track racing programme after Six Days of Hanover cancellation
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Friday, November 04, 2011

Morkov facing disruption to track racing programme after Six Days of Hanover cancellation

by VeloNation Press at 8:06 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Track
 
Danish Saxo Bank SunGard rider might just do one track event this winter

Michael MorkovYesterday’s news that the planned resurrection of the Six Days of Hanover has had to be cancelled due to the hospitalisation of the race organiser has inevitably had knock-on effects to the race programme of a number of riders. One of those affected is the Dane Michael Morkov, who races on the road with Saxo Bank SunGard but has also for years run a busy track programme in the winter months.

Fearing fatigue due to the lack of a traditional winter break, Bjarne Riis previously told Morkov that he had to limit the amount of racing on the boards he did during the off season. The rider had just three events planned over the winter, but the axing of the Hanover event has scuppered the first of those.

In fact, another planned participation is also now annulled, leaving him shorter again in terms of his programme.

"I was supposed to ride three six-day race this season, but right now it looks like there will be only one,” he told Politiken.dk.

“In addition to Hanover would I also have been in Rotterdam from January 5th to 10th, but I've just been told that the training camp with Saxo Bank SunGard has been moved forward to begins the fifth of January. Thus starting Holland is also in the sink.”

He said that the two missed events would leave him with just the six day race in Ballerup’s Super Arena, taking place between February 2nd to 7th. He explained that he had wanted to race at least once before then and will see if it might be possible to compete in Berlin between January 26th and 31st. However he’s not sure if that will work out.

Missing Hanover is a setback for another reason as he had planned to ride the race with Marc Hester in place of his usual Six Day partner Alex Rasmussen. The latter is currently suspended from racing due to three missed whereabouts violations, and could be facing a lengthy ban.

In addition to his Six Day success with Rasmussen, Morkov also took Olympic silver in the Beijing team pursuit plus another silver in the same event at the recent European championships. He was world champion in the Madison and team pursuit at the 2009 world championships.

On the road, he is developing well. His placings this year include third on a stage and third overall in the Tour of Denmark, second on stage four of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, victory in the Challenge Sprint Pro event which preceded the Grand Prix Cycliste de Quebec and Montreal and eleventh in the Giro del Friuli.

He may be disappointed to have a curtailed track racing programme, but Riis may well be relieved. Morkov will again be part of Saxo Bank SunGard next year and the Danish team owner would prefer to see him winning on the road rather than in the velodrome.

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