Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus Bäckstedt will join women’s WorldTour team Canyon-SRAM as lead sports director from 2023, meaning he’ll go up against his two daughters in the top tier of women’s road cycling.
The 47-year-old's eldest child, Elynor Bäckstedt, recently signed a new two-year deal with Trek-Segafredo, who she has raced for since 2020. His youngest, Zoe Bäckstedt, is set to join the women’s WorldTour with EF Education-TIBCO-SVB from next season.
The Paris-Roubaix winner said: “Once my two girls were out in the big world looking after themselves, I felt it was the right time for me to pursue my passion in the sport again and started to look for a role as a Sport Director actively.
“I’m excited to take on this role. It’s exciting times for women’s cycling, and being part of that makes me happy and proud.”
Under Bäckstedt’s tutelage at Canyon-SRAM will be the current British road champion, Alice Towers, who agreed a three-year contract with the team last month. Canyon-SRAM also boast former world time trial champion Chloé Dygert and Amstel Gold winner Kasia Niewiadoma on their roster.
“The team has a really strong base of riders and an interesting way of racing," said Bäckstedt. "At the same time, I would like to improve some areas and put my stamp on them. Overall, it’s a great position to start from.
“I feel I will bring a calm, direct approach to the racing. I hope the riders will feel the passion that I bring as well as my keen eye for detail when it comes to how we approach the races. I want everyone to see that we are a team that backs each other 100%.”
Since retiring, Bäckstedt has managed and coached riders for Sprocket Pro Cycling and Team UK Youth. He has also raced Ironman triathlons, including the World Championships in Kona, Hawaii.
When asked about his goals with Canyon-SRAM, Bäckstedt said: “That is a pretty easy question to answer: win more bike races, and have fun whilst doing it. But the specifics you’ll have to wait for, lots of work is currently going into planning the next season right now.”
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