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All-Swiss team wins Zurich six-day

Bruno Risi, Kurt Betschart stand on the podium for a seventh time. This time, Markus Zberg joins them Keystone

A team of Swiss riders have won Zurich's six-day cycling race for the seventh time. Bruno Risi, Kurt Betschart and Markus Zberg convincingly beat the pack by 96 points.

With just three laps to go in the final race they managed to gain enough momentum to clinch a knife-edged victory.

An international trio consisting of Spain’s Juan Llaneras, Italy’s Adriano Baffi and the Swiss Pascal Richard, came second.

Jimmy Madsen and Tayeb Braikia from Denmark, plus their Swiss teammate, Beat Zberg, came third.

This year’s velodrome racing competition introduced a third person to six-day racing’s normal two-man team. The additional person was imported from the more spectator-friendly world of road racing in a bid to raise the profile of the event.

As recently as the 1997/98 season there were 17 races in the international six-day calendar. But the number has now shrunk to just eight.

One of six-day racing’s problems is that unlike high-profile road racing, its fan-base is the preserve of only the most hardened enthusiasts. Riders competing in teams race around the indoor velodrome for six successive evenings, in a variety of separate events.

The main events are known as Madison sessions, laps interspersed with sprints. Teams win points in the sprints or by gaining laps on the other riders.

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR