Tuesdays at 8.30pm throughout March on BBC Knowledge
This March, BBC Knowledge takes a look behind the sports we all know and love, with a collection of compelling one-off documentaries premiering for the first time on Australian television.
Screening Tuesdays at 8.30pm from March 4, Behind the Sport covers a broad range of sporting topics, from the shocking loss of life in the early days of the Grand Prix and rallying to an investigation by Freddie Flintoff into the prevalence of depression amongst professional sportspeople.
Welsh footballer Craig Bellamy shares his personal crusade to help underprivileged children in Sierra Leone, and former Olympic sprinter Michael Johnson embarks on a quest to find out whether he and other world-class African American and Caribbean athletes are successful as a result of slavery.
The Behind the Sport season wraps up in early April with Driven: The Fastest Woman in the World, a look at a year in the life of Scottish racing driver Susie Wolff as she attempts to break through and become the first woman to race in Formula 1 since 1976.
Natalie Edgar, Director of Television for BBC Worldwide ANZ comments “March is a knockout month on BBC Knowledge with a fantastic collection of Australian-first documentaries. We’re pleased to bring viewers this specially curated season that uncovers fascinating stories from some of the world’s biggest sports.”
Behind the Sport Programming Line-up
Tuesday March 4 at 8.30pm
The Killer Years – Grand Prix (M)
The documentary tells the story of Grand Prix racing in the 1960s and 70s where mechanical failure, lethal track design, fire and incompetence led to the deaths of many young drivers. Among the interviewees contributing to the film are Jackie Stewart, Emerson Fittipaldi and John Surtees.
Tuesday March 11 at 8.30pm
The Killer Years – Rallying (M)
In the 1980s rallying was more popular than Formula 1. A new, no-holds-barred category of extreme performance cars called 'Group B' had taken the world by storm. They were the most exciting machines ever to hit the motorsport scene. Nothing like it has ever happened since. For four wild and crazy years, manufacturers scrambled to build even more powerful cars to be driven by fearless mavericks who could handle the extreme power. Lancia, Peugeot, Audi and later Ford, all battled to produce the next champion. However the sport was heading out of control and the unregulated mayhem would end abruptly after a series of horrific tragedies.
Tuesday March 18 at 8.30pm
Michael Johnson – Survival of the Fastest (PG)
In this landmark documentary, Olympic sprinter Michael Johnson embarks on a personal genealogical and scientific journey in a bid to understand if he, and other world-class African American and Caribbean athletes, are successful as a result of slavery.
Tuesday March 25 at 8.30pm
Craig Bellamy’s African Dream (PG)
A world away from the rough and tumble of the professional game, Bellamy is channeling his passion for football - and his own money - into a personal African crusade. This documentary follows the striker as he returns to the academy to track the progress of the players, the buildings and the league he has sponsored to the tune of almost a million pounds. He wants to learn more about this intriguing country and its people and he wants to discover exactly how far football can go in helping to repair Sierra Leone. Can Craig's academy really make a difference?
Tuesday April 1 at 8.30pm
Freddie Flintoff – The Hidden Side of Sport (M)
Cricket star Andrew (Freddie) Flintoff talks to sporting professionals about the serious effects of depression. He confronts his own issues as captain of England - under pressure and under fire at the top of his game. Freddie reveals the stigma attached to talking about depression in the face of an often unforgiving public. The documentary includes moving interviews with Steve Harmison, Vinnie Jones, Ricky Hatton and a host of sporting heroes. We hear from journalist Piers Morgan, coaches and managers about this hidden side of sport.
Tuesday April 8 at 8.30pm
Driven : The Fastest Woman in the World (PG)
Not since 1976 has a woman raced in Formula 1; Susie Wolff is determined to change that. A documentary filmed by her brother charts the highs and lows of her year racing and the life-changing moment when she is tested for the Williams F1 team. Featuring interviews with Lewis Hamilton, David Coulthard and Ralf Schumacher.