On the penultimate occasion we spoke to the Swedish road race champion, he had been playing the roll of 'baroudeur', as the French term the man who tries for the win the hard-way, from the all-day breakaway; the last time we spoke, he was a 'chrono-man', rolling 55 x 11 across the plains; now he's a 'sprinteur' with three top drawer finishes, right-up there with Zabel, Petacchi, Bennati and all the other guys with the fast-twitch muscles.
I have been very busy since I wrote last. I have been training so hard it's almost been scary, but at the same time good. I felt like I was starting to go really well, then last week I backed off a bit and went out to Belgium to have a couple of runs on the cobbles. Martin and I stayed with the American Cycling Center guys in Hertsberge for 4 days.
As the final week of the year's final Grand Tour begins, there's no rest for the weary. With 3 hard days ahead, this race is anywhere from over, and with Team Liquigas leader Danilo Di Luca still in the podium hunt, big Maggy Backstedt has his work cut out for him.