Valparaiso Cerro Abajo: Insane Urban Downhill Race (Helmet Cam)
Valparaiso Cerro Abajo is an insane, downhill race through the streets of Chile. What makes it fascinating is that it’s not done entirely in the streets – it’s more of an ad hoc course, identified only by a few ribbons marking the lanes.
For as often as they’re on the road, riders are equally traversing down concrete steps – several flights of concrete steps, to be exact. All the while, photographers, gawkers and well-wishers are remarkably, dangerously close to the riders. Oftentimes only a few feet away.
Seeing some of the ramps… I kept thinking to myself Man, that doesn’t look too sturdy. In fact, several of the ramps looked like the kind of thing I used to make in my backyard. Only I wasn’t launching up and tackling 20 foot drops in my backyard.
The video below is absolutely jaw-dropping. I watched it and then immediately went back and watched it again. It’s a helmet-cam video, and if your computer can handle it… I highly recommend watching this thing full screen.
I love the fact that this guy is wearing a suit. There is a crazy near-collision at 0:37, and the ramp that shows up at 2:27 surprised the hell out of me. This video is just stunning, and really makes me feel like I’m riding down the course myself.
I’m a bit rushed this morning, but I wish I could find a bit more info about the race and its history. No Wikipedia entry as far as I could see. Looks like an amazing event, and I can only imagine what a thrill it would be to watch (let alone ride) the whole thing.