Tour de France behind the scenes documentary?
July 11, 2005 9:30 AM   Subscribe

I'm enjoying watching the Tour de France once again this year. I'm always amazed at the amount of vehicles, fans, support people and logistics involved in running this race every year. Has there ever been a documentary about the behind the scenes part of the race? I get little bits and pieces during the coverage, but I'd love to see more!
posted by mhm to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (6 answers total)
Pepe Danquart's Hell on Wheels doc has some good behind-the-scenes action, following the T-Mobile team in the 2003 tour.
posted by carter at 9:40 AM on July 11, 2005

The Discovery Channel HD has been showing "Chasing Lance", "Loving Lance", "Lance in the Bathroom" pretty much nonstop. It shows a lot of what the Discovery Team has to go through especially during the off-season. There's a lot of testing, a lot of training (something like 7,000 calories a day during racing season). It mainly follows Lord Lance but you get a good idea of just how much work is involved.
posted by geoff. at 9:54 AM on July 11, 2005

I recall seeing an episode of "Scientific American Frontiers" (hosted by Alan Alda) which tracked riders of the Tour De France, showing what the race was like - and obviously focusing on human endurance, caloric intake and burning, etc.
posted by ericb at 10:40 AM on July 11, 2005

You can try these blogs hosted by

They include some reporters, a Team CSC mechanic, and Alex Trautwig, 14 year-old son of broadcaster Al Trautwig.
posted by RobbyB at 11:45 AM on July 11, 2005

personally, i enjoy watching the flickr tourdefrance tag daily... it's informal, and often devoid of commentary, but nevertheless a fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpse into the tour.
posted by RockyChrysler at 12:08 PM on July 11, 2005

There are some very good blogs out there blogging the TdF. Some of my favorites:

TDF Blog Updated a couple of times during the day with good coverage.

VeloNews's Coverage of the 2005 TdF has a section with rider diaries (Jan Ullrich, Magnus Backstedt, and Chris Horner are the guests) and tech talk.

Daily Peloton has great overall coverage. I particularly enjoy their rather funny daily Jambon reports.

People rag about OLN's coverage of the Tour here in the States but I think that they are doing a pretty good job, especially when Phil and Paul are commentating. OLN also has some good behind-the-scenes bits during the broadcast. The other day, they were highlighting the fellow on the motorbike that maintains the chalkboard for the breakaways - a very funny guy. Yesterday, they were detailing what riders get in their meal sacks (did you know that some riders will swap food during feeding? Reminds me of an elementary school cafeteria.)

Of course, if you don't have OLN, Eurosport has live audio broadcasts and commentary feeds of all the stages.
posted by moxyberry at 2:57 PM on July 11, 2005

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