A New Documentary Tells the Story of Team Rwanda

Oct 16, 2012
Outside Magazine

Rwandan cyclist Adrien Niyonshuti lost 60 of his relatives to genocide in the '90s. This year, he competed in the mountain biking event at the 2012 Olympics in London. Rising From Ashes is a movie that tells his story by focusing on the evolution of Rwanda's first national cycling team.

In 2005, American bike component builder Tom Ritchey and cyclist Jock Boyer formed Team Rwanda to give some of the country's best cyclists a chance at a career in sport. Niyonshuti became the most successful athlete on that team after dealing with the death of his relatives during the genocide and a number of other personal tragedies that followed.

The movie took six years and $800,000 to make, and is playing at select film festivals now. Check out risingfromashes.com for a list of upcoming screenings.

For more on Team Rwanda, read the following stories:

"Positive Spin," Outside, By Jason Gay
Almost 15 years after the genocide, tiny Rwanda is suddenly a hot adventure destination, the new darling of multinational investors, and, says mountain-bike legend Tom Ritchey, one extra-long bicycle short of a comeback.

"The Survivor," Sports Illustrated, By Angus Powers
After living through the Rwandan genocide, Adrien Niyonshuti is now the number one mountain biker on the biggest cycling team in Africa and will be, without doubt, the most extraordinary athlete at the 2012 Olympic Games.

"Climbers," New Yorker, By Philip Gourevitch
A team of young riders tries to outrun the past.

—Joe Spring

Filed To: Adventure, Biking

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