Saturday 24 February 2018

‘Rough Rider’ Kimmage is subject of new doc

Paul Kimmage
Paul Kimmage

In the new documentary, filmmakers Wildfire show how former pro-cycler Paul Kimmage has coped with the recent turmoil in the world of cycling, particularly the effect the coverage of the Lance Armstrong doping scandal has had on the journalist.

With an intended release date of November, the film will also include footage of Kimmage at the centenary Tour de France last summer.

Throughout his journalism career, Kimmage was hailed as an anti-drug campaigner, attempting to rid the pro-cycling world of the drug takers which have had a considerable impact on the sport’s reputation.

His journalistic efforts were not without their consequences, however, as Kimmage lost his position at the Sunday Times and faced being sued for defamation by UCI chief Pat McQuaid, a one time friend of Kimmage.. The president of the cycling world’s governing body was a former friend and manager of Kimmage.

Appearing on RTE’s Marian Finucane Show last April, Kimmage said that 2012 was the worst year of his life. “In January I was made redundant. Two weeks later, I got a lawsuit. It was a personal action against me. As a result of closure to the Armstrong case, there was satisfaction. I was getting praise, but I was still out of work,” he said.

But Kimmage had built up a legion of fans over the years, particularly among the cycling community, who raised almost $100,000 in an online campaign to help the former professional sportsman fight his case. The management of these funds is currently under investigation.

The documentary title, Rough Rider, is a play on the name of Kimmage’s book, Rough Ride, which was published in 1990. The book, for which Kimmage left cycling to write, focuses on his own experience at achieving success through hard work– and lifted the lid on the prevalent competitive drug use in the sport.

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