After going down on stage 5 of the Tour of Qatar, Slipstream-Chipotle’s Magnus Bäckstedt took an overnight flight to the United Kingdom for a rush surgery on his broken right clavicle.
The surgeon put a permanent plate inside his shoulder to fix the clean break.
After an overnight stay in hospital, Bäckstedt hopes to be riding a trainer within a week and back out on his bike soon thereafter.
“Bike riders heal quickly and Paris-Roubaix is still my objective,” Bäckstedt said. “I have been overwhelmed by the support from my new team. I’d say nearly every teammate has sent me a message of support and I want to thank my new bosses for how they have reacted and supported me after the crash. It’s amazing how that can just calm you down in this situation and make you focus on getting back.”
Bäckstedt went down near the finish of stage 5 after colliding with Quick Step-Innergetic’s Wouter Weylandt. Weylandt had just swung off the front off the bunch after doing a leadout for his teammate Tom Boonen. Bäckstedt, meanwhile, was leading the Slipstream train for teammates Julian Dean and Chris Sutton — both of whom ended up flying over him.
“It was one of those freak accidents,” Bäckstedt said. “I was coming through full gas with Julian and Chris on my wheel. Weylandt looked like he was going fine and I just glanced down to make sure Julian was still on wheel as he swung off.”
“Next thing I was laying in the road watching all the bikes and riders coming towards me,” he said. “As soon as I sat up the shoulder didn’t feel right and as I moved it, I heard a big crunch.”
The Swedish rider didn’t come away from the accident empty-handed, however.
“I even managed to get a DVD of the crash,” Bäckstedt said. “I’m going to put it on my iPod so that I can keep it as a memento.”