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PEZ-Talk: Maggy The Time Triallin’ Machine
It all seems a long time ago now, but when we spoke to Magnus on Friday night, he said if his legs felt good, then he would ‘go for it’ in Saturday’s time trial. He did just that, leading early and finishing an eventual fifth behind stage-winner, Bert Grabsch.

PEZ: Good ride in the chrono, Magnus.

Magnus: Thank you, I was surprised at how well I went. I did my usual 50 minutes warm-up on the turbo, one hour before the race, with the last ten minutes at race pace. I had a disc on the rear and a semi-deep carbon rim on the front with Vittoria tubulars.

I rode 55 x 11 and 12 mostly, with some spells on the 13, but that’s my usual way in a time trial, I had been thinking about using a bigger chain ring; in the race manual it looked as if the course was going to be downhill all the way.

But it turned out that it was pretty flat; long straights on a motorway across the plains, stretching into the distance. On a course like that, you have to work constantly at your concentration, I rode on my speed off the computer and my pulse rate, I tried to keep the work-rate up and not have any lapses. I caught six or seven guys, so that helps too, it pulls you out.

PEZ: What about food and drink.

Magnus: If a time trial is over 40 k then I carry a gel, you only have the bottle you start with and to be honest, I could have done with a little more fluid before the finish.

PEZ: Have you done any wind tunnel work to get your time trial position right?

Magnus: I did, about two years ago and I think my position is pretty good, but it’s one of the things I’m looking forward to at Slipstream – getting back in the wind tunnel with the new bike, to see if we can get my position that little bit better.

PEZ: Does this ride get you thinking about the Worlds time trial?

Magnus: I thought about it, but I don’t think that the Swedish Federation would send me just for the time trial, they have three guys going and their time trial rider will ride the road race as well. The parcours for the road race doesn’t really suit me, there’s five-and-a-half thousand meters of climbing.

PEZ: Was Grabsch a surprise winner?

Magnus: Not really, he’s done good time trials in the Vuelta before and he’s German champion against the watch.

PEZ: Did you expect Evans to go better?

Magnus: Maybe a bit faster, but it depends on the efforts you make the day before, maybe he had to work harder than he would have liked, that’s what happens in stage racing.

Will we be seeing some more Maggy in the Vuelta breaks in the latter half?

PEZ: Do you think Devolder over-cooked it on the Saturday?

Magnus: I think he paid for his good Saturday time trial, big-time on the Sunday, it’s down to inexperience – he went flat-out. But if you looked at Menchov, towards the end of the time trial he wasn’t panicking, he knew he had to save a little bit for the next day when the race went into the mountains.

I can’t tell you much about the mountain stages though; I didn’t see much of what was going-on at the front.

PEZ: How have the legs been after the hammering you gave them in the time trial?

Magnus: Funnily enough, on Sunday they were good, I was climbing well and felt good on the climbs. I was a little sore today, but had no problems with getting into the autobus. I’m happy because the form is getting better and better.

PEZ: Rest day tomorrow.

Magnus: Yeah, I figure we’ve earned one!

PEZ: One more thing; “Tack sa mycket” (Swedish for “thanks so much”)

Magnus: You’re welcome!

We’ll have more Swedish lessons for you before the weekend.


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