Former pro cyclist and Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich will be the focus of a four part Amazon Prime documentary, called “Der Gejagte” (“The Prey”). The show delves into the life of the 1997 Tdf champ, shedding light on the challenges he faced, including his struggles with depression and addiction. The documentary will hitting screens just days before Jan Ullrich’s 50th birthday, which falls on December 2.
Cocaine, whiskey, a descent into darkness
“I took cocaine en masse, I drank whiskey like water, until I was close to death.” Jan Ullrich’s forthcoming revelations are set to generate significant buzz. The former cyclist takes center stage in an Amazon Prime documentary scheduled for release on November 28. This four-episode series, titled Der Gejagte (The Prey), delves into the life of the 1997 Tour de France champion, shedding light on the challenges he faced, including his struggles with depression. The documentary is strategically timed, hitting screens just days before Jan Ullrich’s 50th birthday, which falls on December 2. In a preview French outlet, le Figaro, the docuseries is set to dig deep into Ullrich’s “immense fall” five years ago.
“It was life or death. I really wasn’t well. I took cocaine en masse, I drank whiskey like water, until I was close to death,” he said at the presentation of the show in Munich.
“The most important thing for me is not to want to go looking for the limits for the rest of my life, but on the contrary to find the right balance. I had sufficiently tested the limits, both upwards and downwards. I don’t need that anymore.”
A great rider from a young age
Ullrich was a phenomenal talent. He won the 1993 amateur world championships, the same year his future rival Lance Armstrong would win the pro edition. As well as the Tour, the German would win the Vuelta, the Tour de Suisse, as well as taking both gold in the Olympic road race, and silver in the Olympic time trial. Der Kaiser would battle it out on several occasions with Armstrong, finishing second multiple times. His career began to unravel when he was implicated in the doping scandal, Operación Puerto, and he would ultimately retire in 2007.
The fall from grace
“It would be wrong to say that I did not deceive anyone. For me, I was focused on my opponents, but the fans are obviously part of it,” he said.
His mental health challenges, and struggles with addiction were quite public. A drunk driving conviction, and a…