Bäckstedt undergoes shoulder surgery

Monday, October 23, Liquigas pro Magnus Bäckstedt will undergo an operation to reconstruct his damaged shoulder. Bäckstedt crashed a week ago when training on the track with fellow Swede Freddie Johansson. 20 year-old Johansson spent five days in hospital before being released. He took his first ride on Friday only a week after the accident to show he is progressing well.

Meanwhile, the tall Swede has a severely separated shoulder and visited three specialists in a week. As his orthopedist explained, "The impact of the accident has caused the collarbone to become detached. It is not only pointing up, but also back into the trapezius muscle."

On Monday, a hook and a titanium plate were screwed to the collarbone to re-set it. Hopefully, this will put the 2004 Paris-Roubaix winner on his way to a successful 2007.

"This year has just been awful in terms of luck," Bäckstedt said. "I'm confident in the specialist who carries out the operation. He expects me to be in sling for about six weeks, which for us bike riders means about four! I will be back on the turbo trainer very quickly."

At some point, the plate will have to be removed, but this could be at the end of the 2007 season. "I finished fourth at Roubaix in 2005 with a cracked bone in my wrist so this shouldn't present too many problems," concluded Bäckstedt, who is well-known for high pain tolerance level.

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