There is a surprising amount of off the bike entertainment currently available including a West End Musical and the Netflix Series Tour de France Unchained (Au Coeur de Peleton).
You will probably be well aware of the Netflix series currently available which follows the 2022 Tour de France. Episode 2 will be of particular interest to some West London Cycling members as it features both Stage 4 which we watched near the start then rode to the finish and watched again there, as well as Stage 5 featuring some of the Paris-Roubaix cobbles which we rode a few days before the pro peleton arrived.
It is certainly a very well made documentary, and where it scores highly is that it has so much access to so many teams. Whilst it may offer too much by way of insight, there is more than most previous documentaries have been able to assemble in one production. Similaraly, devotees of Le Tour will learn little new but it is still, nevertheless well made and compulsive. Well worth a watch.
More surprising though is that there is a West End Musical about Gino Bartali at the Charing Cross Theatre (underneath Charing Cross Station) running until 29th July. There is no doubt that it is very good, but whether it has universal appeal is hard to tell. It tells the story of how, during the war, Bartali helped the ressistance by distributing false papers for Jews and other persecuted persons whilst, ostensibly, out on training rides. It is a true story, encapsulated in a musical.
Theatre afficionados should love this but be aware that it is not the singalong rock band tribute type of musical aimed at a commercial mainstream audience. It covers a dark topic and is not, shall we say, uplifting, it is dramatic, emotional and thought provoking. It is not a big budget production but pulls off an amazing show for the resources it probably has, with some good singing voices. The songs are narrative rather than catchy and the lyrics are a bit awkward in places as a consequence but the original music stands the test. With tickets starting at around £25 in a small theatre it is probably worth a visit even if you are not a typical theatre goer but have an interest in cycling history and one of cycling’s all time greats.
Lastly, we have added our latest CADEsport race preview to our YouTube channel and have added a link to our 2022 Dunwich Dynamo Video and the 2023 edition is only 3 weeks away!