“Lion of Flanders”
Fiorenzo Magni, the Lion of Flanders, who was the “third man” of the golden age of Italian cycling, rival of Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali, has passed at the age of 91. Magni would have been 92 years old on December 7.
Addio a Fiorenzo Magni!
A cyclist from the golden era and winner of major races unaided by “bought” teams. Rode with pure guts.
Honest and Consistent — The notion that cycling was an escape, first from misery and then from poverty. That it was always better than having to toil in the fields or in factories. Cycling was a hunger as well as abstinence. Adventure and exploration.
Fiorenzo Magni was cycling as he lived and breathed the sport: a rider, a sporting director, a coach.
His cycling was a religion. A mission. A passion. In a word: love. Often thwarted by Bartali and Coppi, Magni did nothing but thank them: he would say that, without those two, he would have been a nobody. They made him a man.
We have lost one more cyclist from an ear that was golden – Honest and Passionate
ERA IL CICLISMO — Fiorenzo Magni era il ciclismo perché lo aveva respirato da corridore, da direttore sportivo, da commissario tecnico, da presidente dei corridori e da presidente della Lega, poi da console onorario, da ambasciatore internazionale, da autorità planetaria. Il supremo organo giudicante: accoglieva tutti, ma sapeva immediatamente individuare trasgressori, usurpatori, traditori. Il suo ciclismo era religione, missione, passione. In una parola: amore. Stretto fra Bartali e Coppi, Magni non ha mai fatto altro che ringraziarli: senza quei due – diceva – non sarei stato nessuno, mi hanno fatto diventare uomo.
Source – English Gazzetta