Cover image of Sigma Sports presents Matt Stephens Unplugged

Sigma Sports presents Matt Stephens Unplugged

Sigma Sports is proud to present Matt Stephens Unplugged, a regular catch-up with cycling’s favourite character, Matt Stephens, as he chats with special guests and explores the bowels of his own fruity mind. With lots of surprises along the way, the route-map has been torn up; so who knows what direction we’re going in, or where we’ll end up! See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Popular episodes

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Thymen Arensman loves history and has a bright future

Matt Stephens chats to Thymen Arensman about the incredible impact of his first two seasons as a World Tour pro, and where he sees his career going with the Ineos Grenadiers in 2023. The powerful dutchman is perhaps a surprisingly capable climber, and his victory for Team DSM at the Queen stage of the 2022 Vuelta marked him out as a potential future Grand Tour winner. But he’s not letting it get to his head, as he explains to Matt he’s happy to try his best and see where he ends up. For a man who loves history, he’s got the potential for a very bright future.

1hr 13mins

28 Oct 2022

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George Hincapie still loves riding his bike, but still hates intervals

Matt Stephens and Super-domestique George Hincapie chat about the highs and lows of his incredible career where he helped deliver Tour de France victories to three different teammates. However, it wasn’t all done cleanly, and George admitted to doping during a portion of his career which meant his Palmares in Lance Armstrong’s era of dominance were stricken from the record. George helped bring about positive change and is considered by many to be the best teammate of all time, including Mark Cavendish who shared a touching voice note that leaves George shaking.

1hr 9mins

21 Oct 2022

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Lizzy Banks on injury, illness, and grabbing life’s chances by the proverbials

Matt Stephens and Lizzy Banks discuss how the landscape of women’s pro cycling has changed for the better in the past five years. It hasn’t been all plain sailing for Lizzy however, who has been plagued by a serious case of concussion and more recently, pericarditis caused by a Covid infection continues to keep her off her bike. Having studied medicine before pursuing her career in the pro peloton, the Team EF Education–Tibco–SVB rider is well placed to impart wisdom on how to recover from concussion and has the grit to focus on her heart’s recovery by wild swimming and sharing her knowledge of the sport she loves on The Cycling Podcast and GCN Eurosport.

1hr 17mins

14 Oct 2022

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Mental Health and Cycling - Pete Kennaugh and Lee Stephenson

In this special episode to mark World Mental Health Day on October 10th, Matt Stephens chats with two guests to discuss the relationship between cycling and their mental health. Pete Kennaugh is an Olympic gold medalist and enjoyed a successful career racing for Team Sky and Bora–Hansgrohe, who retired to gain better control over his difficult mental health condition. Lee Stephenson was a member of the armed police force in the UK, who suffered immensely in the aftermath of a particularly traumatic incident. Lee discusses the positive influence of cycling in his recovery and ongoing management of complex PTSD. This podcast deals with difficult themes including suicide, and listener discretion is advised. If you are struggling with your own mental health, please contact your local health services or General Practitioner. Or contact www.samaritans.org for more information.

1hr 10mins

7 Oct 2022

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Alex Dowsett is happy to have maxxed out his pro cycling career

Matt Stephens and Alex Dowsett enjoy catching up in the neutral zone of this podcast, before getting down to brass tacks. With his incredible pro cycling career coming to an end with Israel Premier Tech, Alex reflects on how the time felt right to move on to the next chapter with lots of exciting media and business ventures to look forward to. With some great advice on how to use a power meter to best effect, and a deep-dive analysis of how he could outperform his teammates on time trials while pushing fewer watts, Alex is a firm believer in racing with your head, not your legs.

1hr 16mins

30 Sep 2022

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Alex Richardson on making deals in the heat of the breakaway

Matt Stephens learns how Alex Richardson went from brokering deals in the City of London to striking deals in the pro peloton. With a fascinating story of how Stage 3 of the Tour of Britain unfolded, Alex feels that putting too much trust in his fellow riders’ word perhaps cost him the race. The story of how an obsession with cycling took over his life leaves no wonder how he made it from laps of Richmond Park, all the way to the pro peloton. 

1hr 6mins

23 Sep 2022

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Philippe Gilbert on his illustrious career and imminent retirement

Matt Stephens and Philippe Gilbert discuss his incredible career in the pro peloton and how he has prepared for retirement at the end of the season with one final ride on the Cauberg. A former world champion, with stage victories at all three grand tours, his dominance of the Spring Classics is perhaps how Philippe’s career will be best remembered. But the Lotto Soudal rider insists it’s not just the victory that matters, but the manner in which it is won.  For more information on Phil’s last ride as mentioned in the podcast, visit www.philslastride.com

1hr 11mins

16 Sep 2022

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Jack Haig from hitch hiking to the podium at Vuelta a España

Matt Stephens and Jack Haig discuss the value of consistency above all else. The story of how a young Australian mountain biker went from hitching hiking around North America to the third step of the 2021 Vuelta a España is inspirational. His determination and grit are the key to his success and the Bahrain Victorious rider reckons the most important thing to do, is to turn up - just put in a shift no matter how it goes - it’s the sum of your consistency that really makes the difference. Now recovering from a nasty wrist injury, how does he feel to watch the Vuelta on TV and not have the opportunity to play his part?

1hr 7mins

2 Sep 2022

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Rob Hatch is an ordinary man behind an extraordinary voice

Matt Stephens and Rob Hatch discuss the immense privilege they feel to have the opportunity to commentate on professional cycling for a living. While there might be a lot of ego in the business, Rob’s down-to-earth approach to life is refreshing and his mantra of "be nice to people" is something we can all learn from. With funny stories from behind the microphone, like when the fog at the 2021 Giro d’Italia meant he had to commentate without any pictures, this is a refreshing chat between two great friends. But how well does Rob know fellow Accringtonian Mystic Meg’s racehorse business?

1hr 14mins

26 Aug 2022

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Ella Harris from Zwift Academy Champion to Mont Ventoux Challenger

Matt Stephens welcomes proud Kiwi Ella Harris to the podcast in this turbo-charged chat about how much her life has changed since winning the 2018 Zwift Academy, which earned her a pro contract with Canyon SRAM. Comparing her riding style to an all-wheel-drive with a diesel engine, Ella can do everything but sprint. That’s when she’s fit, of course. Recovering from surgery at the time of recording, Ella was looking forward to her return to racing at the Mont Ventoux Challenge. But does she know the price of Kimchi Eggs on Sourdough in her local café, did she really invent the spatula, and will her hometown of Dunedin ever acknowledge her as their unofficial ambassador? 

1hr 11mins

19 Aug 2022