De Buyst: ‘We want to enjoy this event again’

Jasper De Buyst and Tosh Van der Sande were third in last year’s Lotto Six Days of Flanders-Ghent. The Lotto-Soudal riders are aiming for the win this year.

De Buyst is going for a third triumph in Ghent following his success in 2013 (with Leif Lampater) and 2014 (met Kenny De Ketele). “In 2018 I raced with Tosh again after we hadn’t raced together on track for a while. We had so much fun that we wanted to take part again this year”, De Buyst said. “My last day in competition was back in September. We’ll have to wait and see how I’ll go in the race. I simulated a couple of races in training, but it’s not the same as the real thing in the Kuipke.”

“I also broke my shoulder during the road season. It was a complicated fracture, which has now fully healed. Still, on the road you don’t hand over to your teammate and you don’t move your shoulders too much. After one night I’ll know more. As much as I love riding the six days on Ghent, I know how much pain you have on Sunday night.”

If De Buyst’s shoulder holds up, he and Van der Sande are candidates for the overall win, but they will face stiff competition regardless. “I’m expecting a lot from the regular guys like Keisse, De Ketele and of course the world champions Kluge and Reinhardt. But don’t forget the young riders either. As a kid I was knocking on the door myself here. With this deep field it will be a tough battle.”

Jasper De Buyst and Iljo Keisse at the press conference.