Iljo Keisse still unsure about Rotterdam Six-Days participation
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Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Iljo Keisse still unsure about Rotterdam Six-Days participation

by Ben Atkins at 12:46 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Doping, Track
 
UCI tries to stop Belgian from riding but organiser wants more clarification

iljo keisseWith racing due to start at Rotterdam’s Ahoy Sportpalais this coming Thursday, Iljo Keisse (Quick Step) is once again unsure if he will be able to ride. The Belgian is once again under the shadow of a doping ban, as the International Cycling Union (UCI) seeks to prevent him from racing outside Belgium once more.

This morning, when Keisse spoke to Het Nieuwsblad, he was defiant in the face of pressure from the UCI. He was determined to be on the start line in Rotterdam on Thursday, partnering Kenny De Ketele once more, “unless, that is, one UCI official or other drags me from my bike.”

Last month he was prevented from competing in the Revolution meeting in Manchester, England after a letter from the UCI threatened action against the organiser; this, despite the fact that he had just ridden in the Zurich Six-Days in Switzerland.

“Since then I’ve heard nothing more form the UCI,” he said. “I’ve demanaded a penalty of €100,000, as the court specified, but the UCI is just leaving my case to the final ruling in April.”

“What does the UCI even care?” he asked. To them it’s just another thing, while for me it’s a mortgage on my entire career. We have invitations to Rotterdam and Bremen, but right now I’m more concerned with the paperwork than the racing.”

This afternoon Keisse spoke with Sporza, and was still unsure about exactly what was happening. The Rotterdam Six-Days organisers have received an email from the UCI asking them to not allow the 28-year-old fro Gent to start.

“Race director Patrick Sercu [who is also the race director of the Gent Six-Days – ed] has informed me [about it],” he said. “The organisation is not satisfied. The UCI doesn’t give any reasons why I should not be allowed to ride the Six-Days of Rotterdam.

“It’s all happening over my head,” he continued, “I can only hope that everything works out on Thursday night, when the Six-Day starts.

“I wish this case was over long ago,” he said. “There have now been 772 days of messing around. I keep myself ready for every race, but mentally it’s very difficult.”

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