Eight cycling teams opening the doors of their buses and hotels, this results in eight dense and suspenseful episodes. As in the vintage series "Columbo": we know the end, and the name of the winner, from the beginning. But it is the way we arrive at the conclusion that captivates and taps in front of the screen. "Tour de France, au cœur du peloton", which will be available on Netflix from June 8, at 9 am, had two missions: to tell from the inside the biggest travelling race in the world, but also, and above all, to capture a new audience, younger and for whom the Tour de France is perhaps only the summer pleasure of parents and grandparents.
And it's successful. Each episode follows one or two protagonists. Not necessarily happy, like the Swiss Stefan Bissegegr, one of the favorites of the time of the first event and who falls twice. Or relieved, like Dutchman Fabio Jakobsen and his tears of joy, stage winner two years after nearly dying in a sprint accident at the Tour of Poland.
The second episode is exceptional, during the stifling stage of the cobblestones of the North, where the Jumbo-Visma team almost sinks with the falls of their two leaders Primoz Roglic and Jonas Vingegaard. From inside the race vehicle, the panic and certainty of having lost the Tour are palpable.
Pinot opens the doors of his intimacy
In a split second, we see how the Dutch team decides to sacrifice Roglic, to bet everything on Vingegaard and ask Wout van Aert, then yellow jersey, to sacrifice himself to save Vingegaard's chances in the general. A few days later, the triumph of the latter in the insane stage of the Granon, where he takes power, is also experienced from within.
Netflix has also bet on Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ). The latter, although a simple teammate on the Tour, opened the doors of his privacy and let himself be filmed before the race, at home, in his farm in Mélisey (Haute-Saône), with his companion, feeding his goats. A rare opening at home. Like this pretty confession dropped in the middle of an episode. "I am more loved than stronger. Sometimes I wish it were the other way around. »
Only one downside to this series that takes a fresh look at a 120-year-old event: UAE. The team of Tadej Pogacar, double winner outgoing and who will end up losing against Vingegaard after a huge duel, did not want to open up to the cameras. This necessarily detracts from the dramaturgy of the story. And if there will be a season 2, shot during the next Tour, UAE has decided to continue to close its doors. Mechanically and stupidly reinforcing a suspicion around his riders.