Six Days of Rotterdam Day 6: Keisse & Terpstra Win Again, First 2014 Victory For OPQS!
Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team riders Niki Terpstra and Iljo Keisse — following a phenomenal effort in the final Madison to come back from a 12 point deficit — won Six Days of Rotterdam on Tuesday.
The final day came down to four teams and that is also how the final Madison played out. Niki Terpstra earned an essential Derny Race victory early on to keep the duo in contention for the overall victory. Keisse and Terpstra never stopped trying, and with less than 20 laps to go they were able to take a lap and win the overall.
"We were a little bit behind with the points," Keisse said about the exciting Madison. "Niki and I had a tactic going in that we would attack during the race and if we didn't take one extra lap during the first 200 laps, we'd try during the sprint in the last 50 laps. That's what we did with about 20 laps to go. We went all or nothing, and we took the lap and won the six days."
Keisse and Terpstra have now won Six Days of Rotterdam two years in a row.
"I think for Niki it's the only six day he did this winter, and it's his home country with Rotterdam so it's a big event," Keisse said. "It's in a really nice arena in Ahoy. There's always a big crowd, so it's a really good six day race. Also for me it's only a one hour drive from where I am from. So also for me it's important to be really good in Rotterdam. Gent and Rotterdam are my most important six day races. Unfortunately I didn't win in Gent so it was absolutely important for me to try and win in Rotterdam."
The OPQS duo also earned the first team victory of the 2014 season, just as they did in January of 2013.
"I think it's great that a big team like OPQS is one of the best on the road, but also concentrated on cyclocross with Zdenek Stybar and also in track with me and Niki," Keisse said. "Also, we do our team presentation on the track. So it's nice that a big road team is also interested in other parts of cycling. Also, of course every win is a win and it is nice to open the OPQS series of victories this season, whether it was on a cyclocross course, the road, or the track."
Keisse said he and Terpstra will now travel to join OPQS in Calpe for team camp.
"I will arrive pretty late tonight, and I know it was also the birthday of Patrick Lefevere a few days ago," Keisse said. "Maybe if we didn't celebrate his birthday yet we can in the next days for that, as well as the first team victory of the year. We will see!"
Six Days of Rotterdam Day 6 (Final)
1. Niki Terpstra, Iljo Keisse - 357 points
2. Kenny De Ketele, Jasper De Buyst - 375 points (+1 lap)
3. Michael Morkov, Alex Rasmussen - 362 points (+1 lap)
4. Jens Mouris, Wim Stroetinga - 205 points (+1 lap)
5. Barry Markus, Leif Lampater - 155 points (+7 laps)