MAGNUS BACKSTEDT FOUNDER OF MAGNUS MAXIMUS COFFEE LAUNCHES NEW TEAM

Briton Daniel Patten has joined a newly formed Swedish UCI team. Rider and mentor Magnus Backstedt is sponsoring the squad, Team.Cyclesport.se., through his own Magnus Maximus Coffee brand.

Initially the coffee company was set up to aid young riders with sales proceeds now directly funding the team. with a shared ethos of being ?the new generation of committed young professionals who want a clean future for our sport?.

Bringing this Viking sprit together has been a five year effort for Dennis Nystrand. Backstedt and Martin McCrossan of Sprocket Promotions have set up coffee distribution in the UK, USA and Sweden to increase team support through exposure and sales.

The seven Swedes, one Brit and two as yet named riders are said to be ?looking to transfer their aggressive, exciting style of racing from the Elite amateur ranks to professional cycling?.

Alex Wetterhall (SWE)

Max Oste MacDonald (SWE)

Niklas Gustavsson (SWE)

Freddy Johansson (SWE)

Filip Rudenstam (SWE)

Johan Nystrand (SWE)

Marcus Johansson (SWE)

Daniel Patten (GBR)


SVEN NYS WINS CYCLO-CROSS WORLD CUP

Belgium?s Sven Nys showed he is the favourite for next weekend?s world cyclo-cross championships by winning the World Cup race in Milan and sealing overall victory in the season-long competition for a seventh time.

Nys stayed out of trouble on the fast course and then beat rival Lars Boom (Rabobank) in the sprint. He won the World Cup with a total of 620 points. One event remains but Nys has an unbeatable 118 point lead on second placed Bart Wellens.


CHICCHI TO TAKE ON CAVENDISH IN TOUR OF QATAR

Italy?s Francesco Chicchi (Liquigas) won the last stage of the Tour Down Under and now heads to Tour of Qatar to take on Tom Boonen (Quick Step) and Mark Cavendish (Columbia) in the sprints on the Doha Cornice.

Chicchi won the final criterium stage in Adelaide as Aussie rivals Robbie McEwen and Graeme Brown tangled in the final hundred metres.

?Winning the final stage is becoming a bit of a habit and to be honest I didn?t think I had a chance of winning,? Chicchi told Gazzetta dello sport.

Chicchi is a pure sprinter who has an explosive final fifty burst. However he also suffers on the climbs and is often accused of not training and watching his weight.

?I reckon I?m just a bit behind Cavendish and McEwen. People think I don?t train enough and they?ll try and make me race more now. In the winter I was dropped by Michele Bartoli on the climbs but could stay with Alessandro Petacchi,? he responds.

?I suffered when I first turned professional. At first it was pretty easy and it was possible to go out to a club the odd time. Not any more, even if it?s difficult to give up eating a good pizza. They?re like a beautiful nude women??


BASSO FIFTH OVERALL IN SAN LUIS, HAEDO WINS FINAL STAGE

Ivan Basso?s 2009 debut at the Tour de San Luis in Argentina was totally overshadowed by Lance Armstrong?s ride in the Tour Down Under but the Italian showed he is also on form despite his two-year ban for doping and perhaps likely to be Lance Armstrong’s biggest rival in the Giro d?Italia in May.

Basso was unable to beat local riders who are in the peak of their season but rode consistently well in the time trial and hilly stages of the race. He was ninth in the time trial and was sixth on the uphill finish on Saturday.

Alfredo Lucero of the Argentina A team won overall, beating team mate Jorge Giacinti and Jose Serpa (Diquigiovanni). Lucero admitted to Gazzetta dello Sport that is only a part-time rider who works on his parents farm and rides an eight-year-old Pinarello frame and use an Shimano Ultegra components.

Saxo Bank?s Argentinean sprinter JJ Haedo won the last stage of the weeklong race, beating Italy?s Mattia Gavazzi (Diqigiovanni) in the sprint.

Basso?s next race is the Tour of California in mid-February.


OUCH. LANDIS RETURNS AFTER TWO-YEAR BAN

2009 is the year of the comeback and Floyd Landis will join Ivan Basso and Lance Armstrong in the peloton at the Tour of California next month.

The American?s two-year ban for doping ends on Friday and he will ride for the small OUCH team, sponsored by Dr. Brent Kay, a cycling enthusiast from California who helped Landis with his hip problem.

Landis claims he is as fit as when he trained for the Tour de France after timing himself on climbs near his home.

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Academy riders wrap-up Tuscan training camp