Fiorenzo Magni

Back in 1997 when we launched Team Horst Sports (then known as the Horst Engineering Cycling Team), we chose our official USA Cycling club name:

G.S. Fiorenzo Magni

The rationale at the time was that we needed an official name that would stick with us. Back in ’97, I had recently read a Winning magazine story about a legendary Italian cyclist. Fiorenzo Magni, the Lion of Flanders, was in his late 70’s at the time. I read the story and was interested in this man’s results, but more importantly, I was so impressed with the style with which he rode.

The Ronde van Vlaanderen has always been my favorite bicycle race. The parcours is as challenging as it gets and Magni won the race three times. He was never as popular as Gino Bartali and Fausto Coppi, his two big rivals.

He was from a different era. I can’t say that the riders didn’t cheat (performance enhancing drugs) back in his day, but he was a hard man regardless of how he achieved those victories.

The story that stood out most for me in that Winning article was about the time that he broke his left clavicle in stage 12 of the 1956 Giro d’Italia, but still finished the race in 2nd place. The photo is from that race and is described in this Wikipedia entry:

At the hospital he refused a to put on a plaster cast and refused to abandon the Giro in the year of his announced retirement. Magni continued the race with his shoulder wrapped in an elastic bandage. To compensate for his inability to apply force with his left arm, he raced while holding a piece of rubber inner tube attached to his handlebar between his teeth for extra leverage.

After learning about this man, there was no question about who we would honor with our club name, and everyone agreed that Magni was the kind of rider who we aspired to be like. Over the years, every time I have written a check from our club’s bank account, I’ve smiled at the name on the check. My own athletic exploits have been fueled for years by the inspiration of men like him.

We mourn the death of Fiorenzo Magni. He passed away today at the age of 91.

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Not many images from today's NECXBAR #cyclocross in #fitchburg today. I was happy to race, weather was great, and the most challenging course feature was the sand pit which had its own hairpin. Wade and I had fun racing together. I took a pedal to my right thigh, but I'm ready for the push with three more races in December...and then some rest. #teamhorstsports #horstspikes Mr. Curtiss' classic #shenipsitstriders t-shirt has quite the collection of #manchesterroadrace elite runners. He has been collecting for many years. Here he points out co-course record holder, John Treacy, one of my favorites. He added some new signatures at the pasta dinner last Wednesday. This shirt has some great names including Olympic gold medalists and world champions, all who have run the streets of Manchester. How many legends can you spot? #boltonlandtrust Walk of #Thanksgiving at the Sheridan Homestead. The oldest part of the house dates to 1730 and this barn to 1900. #bolton #connecticut #newengland Little D takes her #dreidel spinning too seriously! #spinagogue #majorleaguedreidel #nogeltnoglory My #goodfriday and #blackfriday tradition of taking a #yoga class taught by  @trailrunningmom I noticed that I was the only "boy" today. I should come more often. She would also like me to join her @kripalucenter for a weekend program. #kripalu My 70 hour old cousin (Little E) even has her own name tag at #thanksgiving dinner! My sister (the hostess) doesn't miss a beat! Eleanora doesn't get her own spot (lowest in seniority has to sit with her Mom), but that is still pretty cool. (Mother) @trailrunningmom and son at the #manchesterroadrace #thanksgiving #running #shenipsitstriders #silkcitystriders #teamhorstsports A sea of humanity on #mainstreet in #manchester #connecticut for the #manchesterroadrace #thanksgiving #running #shenipsitstriders #silkcitystriders #teamhorstsports #manchesterroadrace Spaghetti Dinner. #running #silkcitystriders #shenipsitstriders #thanksgiving

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