Legends of Cycling podcasts

Narrated by Graham Jones, former elite road racer and currently race director of the Tour of Britiain, Legends of Cycling is more of a mini radio documentary series than a podcast.

[edit 29/01/2012: it wasn’t the Graham Jones I was thinking of… please check comments to see who the real author and presenter of these podcasts was… apologies!]

The shows start at the very beginning of cycling, with episode 1 spanning the period of tremendous innovation in the 1800s and episode 2 covering the role the bicycle played a major role in breaking down late Victorian barriers of gender, class and race. While interesting, I liken these shows to the early chapters of a biography that you skip over to get to the good bit. I listened to them once though, and they are short enough (less than 10 minutes) to be an interesting “bite size listen”.

Parts 3 and 4 focus on Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Flanders with mention of Peter Post, Rik van Looy and that will be of interest to classics fans. Although it begins with some basic introduction that anyone with a passing interest in bike racing will know, there are many points of historical interest, such as the fact that the Paris-Roubaix route covers most of what was the 1914 front line, and the origin of the nickname ‘The Hell of the North’.

Parts 5 and 6 cover cycling and racing during the two world wars and episodes 7 and 8 focus on Walter Godefroot, a classics hardman in the ‘flahute’ mould, who seems to have been overlooked a little in cycling history.

Walter Godefroot, 1969 Paris-Roubaix

The shows were recorded for the Cycling Revealed, a site that looks like it has been around for a while and has a good repository of articles and information about cycle race history. I also found links to a show called Bike Talk Radio, which I haven’t listened to before but looks interesting. Any feedback welcome- please add your comments to this post.

On the web

pics linked from Cycling Revealed

  • Graham Jones

     I have just discovered your website/blog. Great stuff. I have already spent a long while going back through your archive. I was very surprised (and pleased) to read your piece about the ‘Legends of Cycling’ podcasts. I am Graham Jones, author with CyclingRevealed and Pez Cycling News. It is also my voice on the podcasts (I also wrote the content). However I am not the Graham Jones that you described. I raced about 10 years before the famous GJ. During the 1960’s I spent two seasons in Ghent and raced all over Europe. Hence my love and knowledge of the sport.
     GJ (the first!)

  • Anonymous

     Hi Graham, many thanks for commenting. Sorry for the inaccuracy! I had thought the accent was the better-kent Graham Jones.

    Have you heard the most recent Velocast Race Radio podcast? They have a brief slot on there called “This Week In Cycling History”. It is popular, and there seems to be an appetite for info/stories from the Belgian heartland. I certainly enjoyed and learnt a lot about your bits on Rik Van Look and Walter Godefroot.

    If you ever wanted to record further episodes I’d be happy to promote/link to them on the blog.