In this cycling documentary, Lithuania filmmaker Arūnas Matelis captures the lesser known side of professional cycling showing the selfless sacrifices of domestiques and gregarios in the WorldTour.
“Wonderful Losers: A Different World” features Canadian Svein Tuft, Italians Daniele Colli and Paolo Tiralongo, Dutchman Jos van Emden and Danish rider Chris Anker Sorensen at the Giro d’Italia.
The 71-minute documentary can be rented for $9.39 on Vimeo. Click the Rent button in the top right-hand corner of the player to watch the full documentary now.
The film takes place mostly during the 2014 and 2015 Giro d’Italia but doesn’t follow a rigid narrative structure instead documenting the sacrifices, trials, tribulations and triumphs of riders who give everything to help their teams achieve their goals.
Amoung those the film follows is Canadian veteran Tuft who has a sterling reputation as a team worker controlling breaks and leading the peloton for endless hours often peeling off before the broadcasters even go live. The film takes the perspective of the riders who aren’t fighting for the podium but leaving everything out on the road to help their teammates.
The films summary puts it more painly: “For most of us, the cyclists riding at the back of a race are simply losers. They are called water carriers, domestiques, gregarios, who sacrifice their careers and forego personal victories so their team leaders can win. They have no chance of victory. What drives them on to keep putting their bodies on the line through excruciating pain and demoralising anonymity? Arunas Matelis followed these Sancho Panza’s of professional cycling for 7 years during the prestigious Giro d’Italia and revealed the unseen world from the point of view of the doctors’ team. Our bike heroes crash, rise — and race again.”
The documentary is Lithuania’s entry into the 91st Academy Awards for best foreign film.