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John Mangan – Part Two; “The speakers used to call me ’The Irish Compressor’ or ‘The Irish Locomotive’

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John Mangan won 156 continental events and a raft of races in his native Ireland before he headed for France and huge success. Such was his strength both on and off the bike that for a decade he was head of the ‘Brittany Mafia’, the group of riders which controlled racing in the West France racing Heartland.

As we mentioned in Part One of our interview with John, he reckoned that ‘in all the years I was there we only let two wins slip away from us.’…

We pick up our chat with John after discussing his ‘adventure’ at the Munich Olympics which involved hiding in the woods, the riders he respected most, how most of his 156 wins came through pure power, and of course, why the ‘Rider Mafia’ simply had to let him in…

How many seasons – and which one was the best?

“I rode 13 seasons in France, ’76 and ’79 would be my best but the