Enjoy every episode from season one, two and three here...
Season 3, Episode 5: When Philippe Gilbert owned The Ardennes
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For 10 days in the spring of 2011, Philippe Gilbert was invincible. Having won Brabantse Pijl, the Amstel Gold Race and La Fleche Wallone, he held his arms aloft in Liege at the race most dear to his heart. A decade on, Felix Lowe recalls a mesmerising run on home roads with the brilliant Belgian.
Season 3, Episode 4: 'Second doesn't exist' - When Backstedt denied Museeuw a cobbled swansong at Paris-Roubaix
Swedish powerhouse Magnus Backstedt felt so strong going toe-to-toe with Johan Museeuw in 2004’s Hell of the North, he even questioned whether there was a chain on his bike. Felix Lowe recalls the Lion of Flanders’ last major race, when a flat tyre stopped him sprinting for a record-equalling victory.
Season 3, Episode 4: 'That was my best chance' – When Adrie van der Poel denied Sean Kelly in Flanders
Thirty-four years before Mathieu van der Poel won the Tour of Flanders, his father pipped Sean Kelly to the line. Felix Lowe turns back the clock to 1986, and the race in which the Irishman would come closest to glory in the only Monument that would forever elude him.
Season 3, Episode 3: The ‘toughest bike race ever’: When Eugène Christophe braved blizzards at Milan-San Remo
We’re winding the clock back a bit further this week to 1910 and a spectacle we will never again see in cycling. Before he became the first man in history to wear the Tour's Yellow Jersey, Eugène Christophe battled mountains of snow, freezing temperatures and even wore the wrong trousers to take victory after more than 12 chilling hours at La Classicissima.
Season 3, Episode 2: King Kelly’s supreme seven-year reign at Paris-Nice
No one has shone brighter in the Race to the Sun than Sean Kelly, who won seven straight editions after Stephen Roche’s GC victory got the wheels turning for Ireland in 1981. Felix Lowe recalls Kelly’s formidable streak, after speaking to the man who dominated the likes of Bernard Hinault and Laurent Fignon during a golden age for French cycling.
Season 3, Episode 1: King for a day: When Ian Stannard outfoxed the Wolfpack at Omloop
Re-Cycle is back for a third season - and we kick off with the day Team Sky's Ian Stannard pulled off one of the surprises of the century at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad in 2015. Outnumbered three to one, Britain's Stannard outfoxed a stellar Etixx–Quick-Step trio of Tom Boonen, Niki Terpstra and Stijn Vandenbergh to defend his Omloop Het Nieuwsblad crown in 2015.
Season 2, Episode 20: 'Hell starts here' - When Jimenez won the first ascent of the Angliru
The fearsome Angliru immediately became a Vuelta a España legend on its introduction to the race in 1999, when Spanish climber José María Jiménez was first to conquer the mountain. We remember a mythical win shrouded in fog and controversy.
Season 2, Episode 19: Fans spat at him, tried to shove umbrellas into his spokes: When Caritoux overcame not just the odds to win La Vuelta
Just when you thought Tao Geoghegan Hart’s Giro d’Italia victory over Jai Hindley was a close-run thing, we rewind to the 80’s and the closest a GC battle has ever been. In 1984, French rookie Éric Caritoux was called up at the 11th hour to replace the legendary Sean Kelly and make his Vuelta a España debut. He would defy a hostile home crowd, take the race to the wire and top the GC by just six seconds. As it became clear that Caritoux would push local favourite, Alberto Fernández to the line fans insulted him, spat at him, doused him in cold water, threw newspapers at his wheels, and pelted him with rotten fruit. Some even tried to shove umbrellas into his spokes.
Season 2, Episode 18: 'Until he'd killed the bull, he wasn't happy' - The riddle of Ocana's only Vuelta victory
On the 50th anniversary of Luis Ocaña's breakthrough 1970 Vuelta a España title, we recall the first Grand Tour of the volatile Spaniard’s colourful career – and ask why it did not lead to more triumphs for the nearly-man Eddy Merckx thought of as his biggest threat...
Season 2, Episode 17: 'The most beautiful surprise of my life': When Kelly’s cool head set up Roche’s Triple Crown victory
Nerves of steel from the Irish underdogs saw Stephen Roche ride to the Rainbow Jersey at the 1987 World Championships, becoming only the second man in history after Eddy Merckx to wear it after winning the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France. But he got a big helping hand from Sean Kelly.
Season 2, Episode 16: Putting the 'Great' into Great Britain: When Tom Simpson conquered the world
A mix of leg power, cunning and killer instinct from charismatic Yorkshireman Tom Simpson saw him outkick Rudi Altig to take the Rainbow Jersey in San Sebastian. Felix Lowe winds back the clock to 1965, when Major Tom banished British cycling's inferiority complex.
Season 2, Episode 15: 'He wrote the legend of the Tour': The remarkable tale of Alex Virot
An artist and adventurer who flew planes and crossed oceans; an intrepid reporter who rubbed shoulders with presidents, kings, popes and dictators; a pioneering broadcaster who brought the Tour to life, and in doing so, paid with his own. In this week's Re-Cycle, we remember the remarkable figure of Alex Virot...
Season 2, Episode 14: The Woman in White: When Magni thwarted Coppi after an insult from his mistress
We look back at the 1956 edition of Il Lombardia, when Fiorenzo Magni – incensed by some goading from the so-called Woman in White – denied Fausto Coppi a sensational sixth win in the autumn Classic as the leaves were falling on the poster boy of Italian cycling’s career.
Season 2, Episode 13: 'This f****** jersey's mine!': Lance Armstrong goes deep into the red at Luz Ardiden
Few Tour de France stages have caught the imagination quite like the day Lance Armstrong crashed on Luz Ardiden before fighting back for victory. We rewind to 2003 and the extraordinary centenary Tour tussle between Armstrong and Jan Ullrich.
Season 2, Episode 12: 'Terrible! Unimaginable!' - The day Eddy Merckx's reign finally ended
A desperate Eddy Merckx's seemingly indomitable grip on the Maillot Jaune was prised loose when Bernard Thévenet reeled in The Cannibal on the climb to Pra Loup at the 1975 Tour de France. We recall the punches, punctures and brutal controversy for Re-Cycle.
Season 2, Episode 11: 'I fell 70m off a mountain': When Van Est plunged off the Aubisque and Koblet was king
Felix Lowe remembers the first Dutchman to lead the Tour de France: Wim van Est, in 1951. But he crashed 70m into a Pyrenean ravine – and was lucky to escape with his life – before Pédaleur de Charme Hugo Koblet reigned supreme.
Season 2, Episode 10: ‘A whole world of sensations’: When Chozas conquered Chiappucci in Sestriere
Spaniard Eduardo Chozas denied Italy's Claudio Chiappucci in the Giro d'Italia's first ever summit finish in the ski resort of Sestriere in 1991 – 14 months before El Diablo soloed to victory on the same climb in one of the most magnificent breakaways in Tour de France history.
Season 2, Episode 9: Glory and scandal at the Giro: The tragic tale of Marco Pantani
Marco Pantani's swashbuckling victory at Madonna di Campiglio in the 1999 Giro d'Italia should have been his crowning moment. Instead, the Italian was kicked out of the race while wearing the Maglia Rosa, ending the defence of his title and sending his career into freefall.
Season 2, Episode 8: Climbing with Crazy Heart: When Bitossi erupted on Mount Etna
We kick off our Giro episodes with the story of Franco Bitossi. Felix Lowe remembers how the Italian rider with cardiac arrhythmia became the first to conquer Mount Etna in the 1967 Giro d’Italia. But questions remain over whether his psychological frailty cost him a Rainbow Jersey in an agonisingly close, famous finish.
All episodes of the Re-Cycle Podcast are read by Graham Willgoss and produced by Pete Burton.
Season 2, Episode 7: Triumph to tragedy: Frank Vandenbroucke's Liège-Bastogne-Liège win
It was a year in which everything the flamboyant tyro touched – even his hair – seemed to turn to gold. So dominant was Franck Vandenbroucke’s showing that spring that the question had to be asked: was this the second coming of Eddy Merckx? But 10 years later, he was dead.
Season 2, Episode 6: Carnage on the cobbles: The last wet Roubaix
Eighteen years after Belgium's Johan Museeuw won his third cobblestone trophy, Paris-Roubaix fans are still waiting for another wet edition of the Hell of the North. The second of our Roubaix-themed retrospective Re-Cycle features ponders the enduring appeal of slippery cobblestones while looking back at the muddy mayhem of the last time it rained on Roubaix.
It's also our first episode recorded in lockdown...
Season 2, Episode 5: When the Pelissier brothers ruled Roubaix
Set against a backdrop of renewal and recovery, when cycling was battling back from the destruction of war, two brothers pulled off a famous, unparalleled one-two in the 1921 Paris-Roubaix in spite of a bounty on their heads for trying to break away from La Sportive, the suffocating consortium which then governed the sport.
In the latest episode of Re-Cycle, we recall the fraternal feeling of 1921’s Paris-Roubaix, won by Henri Pélissier ahead of his brother Francis. It remains the first and only time in cycling history that siblings have finished on the top two steps of the podium in one of cycling's fabled Monuments.
Season 2, Episode 4: 'The hold-up of the century': Jacky Durand's 217km break to win the Ronde
In 1992 Frenchman Jacky Durand defied all the odds by winning the Tour of Flanders from a breakaway of 217 kilometres. Part of a four-man move, the 25-year-old became the first rider in Ronde history to win from a long-distance break – and remains to this day the last Frenchman to win the cobbled classic.
Season 2, Episode 3: When Gent-Wevelgem was blown apart, and G took a tumble
Rewinding only five years to the crazy, windswept 2015 edition of Gent-Wevelgem, Felix Lowe remembers bearded Italian veteran Luca Paolini’s victory on a day of blustery subplots, cobbled catastrophe, endless drama and a meme-tastic crash by Geraint Thomas.
Season 2, Episode 2: 'A man possessed': Sean Kelly's perfect Poggio plunge at Milan-San Remo
As season two of Re-Cycle continues, we look back at Sean Kelly's second Milan-San Remo victory, when the Irishman reeled in rival Moreno Argentin on his fearless descent of the Poggio before kicking clear for the final big win of his illustrious career.
Season 2, Episode 1: 'Vengeance in his soul' – When Anquetil pinched victory from Poulidor in Paris-Nice
The first of the 2020 series looks back at one of the greatest editions of Paris-Nice. Felix Lowe revisits the 1966 Race to the Sun, when Jacques Anquetil won the race for the fifth and final time by denying compatriot Raymond Poulidor on the very last day.
Season 1, Episode 13: When team-mates become rivals: Greg LeMond's infamous attack in 1982
In the final Re-Cycle of season one, we take a look back at the last time the World Championships came to England prior to the 2019 race. The 1982 world title may have gone to the red-hot Italian favourite, but it was the actions of Greg LeMond, who controversially chased down fellow American Jonathan Boyer, which made the headlines.
Season 1, Episode 12: The first ever Vuelta winner, who helped put man on the moon
From winning the inaugural Vuelta a Espana in 1935 to helping put a man on the moon, Belgium's Gustaaf Deloor was a pedalling pioneer whose career was cut short by war.
Season 1, Episode 11: Jacques Anquetil and the first ever Tour-Vuelta double
This time, we’re rolling with the first rider to win all of cycling's Grand Tours – France’s Jacques Anquetil and the 1963 Vuelta victory from the man considered the best time triallist of his generation.
Season 1, Episode 10: Kidnappings and controversy - South America's first Grand Tour winner
In this edition of Re-Cycle, we’re riding with the first South American to win a Grand Tour – Colombia’s Luis 'Lucho' Herrera – and delving into the stories of race fixing and saddle sores behind his 1987 Vuelta a Espana title, as well as the kidnapping that followed.
Season 1, Episode 9: When Eddy Merckx almost won two Tour de France stages in one day
In the latest episode of Re-Cycle, we look back at the year the greatest road cyclist of all time, Eddy Merckx, broke rival Luis Ocana by almost winning two stages in one day during the 1972 Tour de France.
Season 1, Episode 8: The story of the first ever maillot jaune
One hundred years after the introduction of the first yellow jersey, the latest in our historical Re-Cycle series looks back at the creation of one of the most iconic symbols in the world of sport. We delve into the origins of the fabled maillot jaune – first worn by the Frenchman Eugène Christophe on 19th July 1919...
Season 1, Episode 7: When Britain's first Tour stage winner blew the field away in 1959
In this episode of Re-Cycle, we doff our cap to Brian Robinson, Britain's first ever Tour de France stage winner courtesy of a remarkable solo win on Stage 20 in the 1959 race.
Season 1, Episode 6: The day the entire Belgian team walked out on the Tour
This time out we’re going back to 1937, when defending Tour de France champion Sylvère Maes withdrew from the race with his entire Belgian team while wearing the yellow jersey – just days away from Paris. Yes, really...
Season 1, Episode 5: Andy Hampsten and 'The Day the Hard Men Cried'
From one extreme breakaway to another, and this time out we’re riding with Andy Hampsten, who – with the help of sheep's wool fat and neoprene diving gloves – conquered the snow-capped Gavia to become the first American to don the maglia rosa in 1988. It was the day that did more than any other to make Hampsten the first and only American to win the Giro – and a stage otherwise known as ‘The Day the Hard Men Cried’.
Season 1, Episode 4: Fausto Coppi's majestic ride from Cuneo to Pinerolo
Last time out, we climbed to the Basilica San Luca with Fiorenzo Magni biting down on an innertube to distract him from the pain of a broken collarbone. Magni had, despite winning the Giro d’Italia three times, always lived in the shadow of his compatriots: Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali. This time out, we’re on the road with Coppi himself – and his mythical long-range attack from Cuneo to Pinerolo that helped him win the 1949 Giro d’Italia.
Season 1, Episode 3: The diabolic climb which made Magni bite the pain away
They say 666 is the number of the beast. Not that many riders to have taken on the monstrous climb to the Basilica San Luca in northern Italy need reminding. It’s a road that has staged some stand-out moments in the history of the Giro d’Italia – from Fiorenzo Magni’s grimacing heroics in 1956 to Simon Gerrans dropping Chris Froome in 2009.
Season 1, Episode 2: Hinault soloes to glory in 'Neige-Bastogne-Neige'
In the second episode of Re-Cycle, we look back at the freezing 1980 edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège in which Bernard Hinault braved blizzards and snow to win by almost 10 minutes from a field of just 21 finishers.
Season 1, Episode 1: When there were two winners of Paris-Roubaix
How did it come to be that the official list of Paris-Roubaix winners exceeds the number of races by one? We revisit the controversy that saw Frenchman André Mahé and Italy's Serse Coppi both win – at least officially – the 47th edition of the Hell of the North.
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