Heroes of Paris Roubaix Magnus Bäckstedt
One of my all time favorite riders and a great influence for me to know that as a big man I might still be able to ride a bike. Magnus Bäckstedt (born Linköping, Östergötland, Sweden, 30 January 1975) is a now retired Swedish professional racer. He began as a skier, selected for the national team when he was 14. Bäckstedt is 1m93 (6ft 4in) tall and weighs 94kg (207lb) He is one of the biggest riders in professional cycling. Bäckstedt began as a professional career in 1996, riding for Collstrop before moving to Palmans in 1997. In 1998, having switched to GAN, Bäckstedt came seventh in Paris-Roubaix and won the 19th stage of the 1998 Tour de France between Chaux-de-Fonds and Autun.
In 2002 and 2003 he rode for Team Fakta where he was the strongest rider in 2003. When Fakta closed he went to Alessio-Bianchi, where he won the 2004 Paris-Roubaix. The two favourites, Peter van Petegem and Johan Museeuw dropped out after crashes, leaving Bäckstedt to sprint on the track at Roubaix. The manager of Crédit Agricole, Roger Legeay, had predicted that Bäckstedt would one day win the race. He said: “He’s not a flahute. He’s not especially the fastest, but after 260km on the cobbles, it’s often the rider who feels freshest who wins.”