Century TV is producing an eight-part TV series for ITV4, the broadcaster currently airing live daily coverage of the Tour de France. When Le Tour finishes, The Cycle Show will take over: the first programme is to be broadcast at 8pm on 23rd July. The Cycle Show will be repeated on Saturdays at 5:30pm and on Sunday mornings on ITV4+1 as well as ITV Player.
The Top Gear-style programme will be presented by Graham Little with support from Rob Hayles and Anna Glowinski and will be filmed on Sundays at Look Mum No Hands bike shop café in Old Street, London. The series is sponsored by Chain Reaction Cycles of Northern Ireland.
Celebs lined up for the show include Eddy Merckx, Nigel Mansell, Wayne Hemingway, Graham Obree and Gary Kemp.
Century TV managing director Rohan Browning said: “We feel that there is a real gap in the market for a programme such as this and we’re looking forward to getting the show underway. ITV4 are an ideal partner for a programme such as this and it will really complement their cycling portfolio.”
Chain Reaction Cycles marketing manager Damien Duggan said: “This is another positive signal that cycling is finally hitting the mainstream. The beauty of The Cycle Show is that it’ll appeal to a wide range of viewers, and with its debut to coincide with the start of the London 2012 Olympics we hope it’ll inspire more people to discover the joys of riding.”
Many magazine style TV shows on cycling have been proposed over the years but few get past basic pilots, and none have been commissioned since The Chain Gang, a six part series from 1994, broadcast by Tyne Tees/Yorkshire, fronted by a fresh-faced (and smooth-legged) Carlton Reid, now executive editor of BikeBiz.