A Little 500 Documentary Finally Crosses the Finish Line
More than three decades after Breaking Away first introduced the race to the world, three IU alums present their film at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater in Bloomington.
The term “middle of nowhere” might have been coined for spots like Hemlock Cliffs, a trail leading through an oasis of sandstone bluffs designated a “special place” by Hoosier National Forest officials for its striking and rare features.
From the moment the green flag dropped at Bill Armstrong Stadium, the race maintained a dizzying pace. The top teams took turns at the front of the pack, riders looking over their shoulders more than at the track ahead of them. The attacks were fast and furious, stretching the field out so much so that at Lap 65, nearly half of the teams had fallen off the lead lap.
Bundled up and shivering, the racers were eager to get started. So much so that the 2013 race featured its first crash in just lap 3. Oddly, it has become a bit of an annual tradition to have a fairly scary crash in the first few laps before the bikers settle down and race cleanly. This crash left a Rainbow Cycling rider with a broken collarbone, leaving that team’s already-smaller squad with just two able-bodied riders for the remainder of the race. Remarkably, they stuck with the pack and finished the race in 14th place, earning the respect of the entire field.
Say you’re at the track and just realized that you don’t know anyone racing. Not a problem, just cheer for one of the favorites and look smart when they bring home the Borg-Warner Trophy. Here, on the heels of our list of first-timers’ do’s and don’ts, see our primer on the top riders to regard this weekend at the Little 500 bike races in Bloomington:
The Manassass High School football program got the documentary treatment last year with Undefeated, which took home an Oscar. ESPN has its own series called 30 for 30 that revisits famous (and infamous) events in sporting history. Now Indiana University’s Little 500 bike race itself will be featured on the silver screen, by way of IU alumni and co-directors Thomas Miller and Peter Stevenson, with assistance from current IU senior Ryan Black. The title: One Day in April.