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.
More videos here and another helmet cam here.
[via Coudal, CC photo via Jaime Andrés]
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Holy Crap! This is crazy! I was expecting the craziness to stop around 1.30 but it keeps going! I had to take a breather at 2:30.Liz (March 3, 2011 at 10:08 am)
The rogue dog alone would have thrown me, to say nothing of the RAMP UP THE SIDE OF THE WALL.juliet (March 3, 2011 at 2:19 pm)
I like how he gives that crazed I-can’t-believe-I-just-cheated-death kind of laugh under his breath after landing the big jump in front of the roaring crowd at ~2:30.Tim (March 9, 2011 at 6:31 pm)
Astounding! Any footage shot by members of the crowd? We need to see that altitude from the ground.Graham Cooper (March 18, 2011 at 9:29 am)
Hi Graham. It may vary depending on the year, but doing a search on Flickr using the term valparaiso abajo should give you some additional street-level views.avoision (March 18, 2011 at 9:34 am)