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The Magnus Diary: Back on the Bike
It’s critical times for Magnus Backstedt, as his Roubaix target is just 3 weeks away but his knee refuses to clear up after a little crash a few weeks back. Today, Maggy takes us through his run-up to, and out of- last weekend’s Milan-Sanremo…

Hi everyone, after crashing during the first race of the year I have spent the last couple of weeks on and off the bike. I finally got to the point where I was able to put together a couple of back to back rides, and I was also getting to the point where I had to get back to racing if I wanted to be competitive during the classics this year. So I headed out to Giro di Lucca and the Tirreno-Adriatico.

Magnus was ramping up in the southern Italian sunshine at Tirreno-Adriatico.

I was able to get through both races in a fairly good way. My knee was still hurting quite a bit up until the last 2 days of Tirreno. With no more pain I was able to pedal properly and that makes life so much easier as a bike rider. As you can probably imagine it is really hard to ride these races even when you are going well and it is even harder when you have to do it with one leg.

Finding Form
Anyway, I finally started riding pretty well and was able to mix it up in the sprints the last couple of days, and that was a really nice feeling after having the emotional rollercoaster I have been going through lately. It is hard to stay focused and motivated when you get one or two days on the bike and you start thinking that you are on the way back only to be knocked on the head and having to take a few days off again.

After Tirreno I had a few days easy to recover and make sure my knee was working the way it should. I stayed in a hotel just outside of Bergamo and my manager Martin McCrossan came down to see me and we travelled around and visited some of my team sponsors who are located in the area. We spent half a day checking out the Santini factory where all my clothes are made. That was really interesting, and I must say that there is a lot more going in to making these clothes than I thought there was. [++Note: Check out the PEZ Tour of the Santini Factory here]

The bunch rolls out of Milan as the journey to Sanremo begins…

The San Remo Job
Friday lunch I hooked up with the team again to do the Milano-San Remo. This is one of the most particular races in the year due to its cheer distance. The race itself is 294km and then you have to add on another 10km of neutral, so you end up with a 304km day. That is almost 2 normal races in one day. Due to my lack of racing this year I was given the job of looking after Paolini and Garzelli for as long as possible, a job that I really don’t mind doing, and I’m pretty good at as well after spending a fair few years looking after sprinters and leading them out. Then after 183km something happened to my knee. It just locked up and I couldn’t push at all on the pedals, so I had to stop immediately. As you can imagine I was really worried. In writing moment I am waiting for an MRI scan and I’m hoping to be able to find out what the problem is and take some action to get back on the bike as soon as I possibly can. There is still a small chance of getting back and being competitive for Paris-Roubaix. That chance is getting smaller and smaller for every day now though, so I’m going to have to ask for a miracle to do it.

Last time we promised that Magnus would answer one reader question with each diary… Well leave it to the Big Man to throw it into the big ring and get back with answers to a whole pack of reader questions…! We’ll run these as a separate story on Friday so stay tuned! –Pez.


MAGGY’S Snack Pack
• Man Jewel: RedlineSportsCars

• Maggys Music
• Green Day – Suffocate
• Embrace – Ashes
• Red Hot Chili Peppers – Cabron

• Observation of the week: Tirreno Adriatico – All the Italian cycling fans were abducted by aliens, because they sure weren’t at this race!

Gotta question for Maggy? Send us your thoughts and ideas, and we’ll choose one for Magnus to answer with each diary.
Send your questions to:


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