6 August 2020 The Irish Film & Television Network
TG4 Cycling Show Triumphs at the Celtic Media Festival
29 Apr 2013 : By Gearóid Gilmore
TG4’s cycling documentary ‘Rás Tailteann – Rotha an tSaoil’ scooped two awards at this year’s Celtic Media Festival held in Swansea.

The double-winning documentary tells the story behind one of Ireland's greatest sporting institutions, the Rás Tailteann cycling race. Established in 1953, its aim was to symbolise the nationalist aspirations of its organisers and promote Irish culture at a time of fierce political and sporting division. The programme tells the tumultuous history of the Rás and also offers a unique take on the cultural and political development of late 20th century Ireland - a revealing through-line from the 1950s to the modern day.

Produced by Dot Television and Sónta, the production received funding from TG4 and from the BAI. Producer David Burke and director Seán Ó Cualáin were in Swansea to receive their two Torc awards.

The Celtic Media Festival is held annually and presents awards in a range of programme categories. Entries go through a national pre-selection phase in each of the Celtic countries with the best advancing to compete in the international phase. TG4 had eight programmes shortlisted in various categories in this year’s Festival. The Spirit of the Festival Award is given to the best programme in a Celtic language.

The double win for the Rás programme brought the TG4 tally of Torcs at the 2013 Festival to five. Director General Pól Ó Gallchóir was naturally very happy saying prizes such as the Celtic are of particular significance for the Irish service. “As well as meeting the needs of the domestic TV audience, our content is now reaching people all over the world through our Player and other devices", he said. “It is gratifying to see our programmes standing up to competition from the best from Scotland, Wales and indeed Ireland”, he said “and reaffirm our conviction that quality will always travel well.”

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