As Canada wades into the winter months, Canadian Cycling Magazine will be giving you some ideas of what to watch on the trainer. Every week, we’ll dig up something different for you to enjoy while you churn out the hours in the pain cave. From classic races to binge-worthy TV series, from epic films to live cyclocross races, keep your eyes here for our best suggestions each week. Last week we featured canine companions, crits, ‘cross and Netflix emergencies.
The voice of cycling, Paul Sherwen
The tragic passing of Paul Sherwen has left a hole in the hearts of many cycling fans whose July’s had been filled with the sound of the British commentator, alongside Phil Ligget, calling the Tour de France. He worked on 33 Tour de France’s as a broadcaster so finding stages to watch on the trainer shouldn’t be too difficult. Pull up any English broadcast of a Tour stage from the past decades and chances are you will hear Phil and Paul. Stage 12 of the 2000 Tour de France finished on Mont Ventoux, and featured a classic battle between Marco Pantani and Lance Armstrong. More recently, Alberto Contador and his Saxobank teammates split the race up in crosswinds on Stage 13 of the 2013 Tour. Enjoy his insight, his iconic voice and some beautiful bike races this winter to remember the legendary commentator.
Brico Cross Essen – Dec. 8
The cyclocross season continues rolling on this weekend with the fifth round of Brico Cross series in Essen. The race can be watched on FloBikes or GCN. Maghalie Rochette will be lining up as her European ‘cross season enters its second month. In the men’s race, neither Wout van Aert or Mathieu van der Poel are racing opening up the racing for someone else to shine considerably.
Druivencross – Dec. 9
One of the oldest races on the cyclocross calendar, Vlaamse Druivenveldrit Overijse also known as ‘the mother of all crosses’, isn’t the most noteworthy course but it’s technical and difficult. The race is considered to be a cyclocross classic even if it doesn’t appear in one of the major series. 2018 is the 81st edition of the race with Mathieu van der Poel taking the victory in the past three editions of the men’s race with Pauline Ferrand-Prévot having won the women’s race last year.
Narcos became one of the most popular series on Netflix when it was first released in 2015 The first three seasons followed the rise of the Colombian narcotics trade, and the life and career of Pablo Escobar. Now, the binge-worthy TV series about drug traffickers goes to Mexico for another season of binge-worthy TV. Season 1 of Narcos: Mexico follows the rise of Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo and his pursuit by DEA agent Kiki Camarena. The suspense and action will have you sweating even before you start spinning.
Blue Planet II
It seems appropriate to admire the world we live in while on the bike. While you can observe mountains and rolling countryside from the saddle, with Blue Planet II you can go underwater. The nature documentary on marine life is narrated by the unforgettable voice of naturalist David Attenborough. It will captivate your mind with awe-inspiring shots taken during thousands of dives. To top things off, the series features a beautiful score by Hans Zimmer and Radiohead that will give your trainer sessions a nice flow.
Lord of the Rings
The Lord of the Rings shouldn’t need an introduction. The extended version of the epic fantasy trilogy comprising of The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King runs a total of 11 hrs 23 min 59 sec making for an extremely efficient way to fill a lot of trainer hours. Netflix has all three films right now but only the extended version of The Return of the King, so unfortunately you’ll have to settle for the 10 hr 20 minute version of this timeless adventure story.