Valparaiso Cerro Abajo 2011 Preview

Feb 17, 2011 at 20:49
by Fraser Britton  
Has the season started already? Over recent years, the South American Urban DH race season has flourished and is now a full fledged start to the riding season for many World Cup stars. Last week, tons of riders were in Santos Brazil for the epic stair race, this week we are in Valparaiso, Chile for the 9th installment of the Valparaiso Cerro Abajo.The race here can be explained in one word. Sketchy. From the dogs on course, to the insane fans, to the multitude of uneven stairs with absolutely no flow, Valpo aims to please. The features are large and the ground is slick cobblestones for much of the track. It makes for great spectating, and 10 000 rabid fans filled the streets last year to watch.

Victor Herresman, event promoter, explains below:

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It used to be that the stunts here were built with piles and piles of wood. Unfortunately that meant a lot of repairs, and a lot of Chilean home depot runs every year. Last year a few jumps moved to steel for durability. This year, they are all welded steel frames thanks to the welders at Oxford bikes. Here the first few piles of decking is piled high.
It used to be that the stunts here were built with piles and piles of wood. Unfortunately that meant a lot of repairs, and a lot of Chilean home depot runs every year. Last year a few jumps moved to steel for durability. This year, they are all welded steel frames thanks to the welders at Oxford bikes. Here the first few piles of decking is piled high.
The streets in Valparaiso can be very, very narrow. Just take a look at the one we have to drive along to get to our hotel. It fits exactly, one car.
The streets in Valparaiso can be very, very narrow. Just take a look at the one we have to drive along to get to our hotel. It fits exactly, one car.
Cedric Gracia is a rockstar down here. He has the unmatched personality and talent that the South American fans love. Wherever he goes, he is mobbed. Today, he managed to find a quiet spot next to our hotel to assemble his bike, sans mechanic. Kevin Joly, his normal wrench, had to stay home this week, so Cedric is spinning his own wrenches. It took him 5 tries and 20 minutes to get his chain installed. Note to self: do not let Cedric work on my bike.
Cedric Gracia is a rockstar down here. He has the unmatched personality and talent that the South American fans love. Wherever he goes, he is mobbed. Today, he managed to find a quiet spot next to our hotel to assemble his bike, sans mechanic. Kevin Joly, his normal wrench, had to stay home this week, so Cedric is spinning his own wrenches. It took him 5 tries and 20 minutes to get his chain installed. Note to self: do not let Cedric work on my bike.
Some of the jumps here are massive. This road gap stepdown gets the finishing touches put to it while CG and Victor look on.
Some of the jumps here are massive. This road gap stepdown gets the finishing touches put to it while CG and Victor look on.
This picture is self explanatory enough, WTF!
This picture is self explanatory enough, WTF!
... and this is what that gap looks like as you roll into it blind, in a left hand corner. Much Excite. I like.
... and this is what that gap looks like as you roll into it blind, in a left hand corner. Much Excite. I like.

Stay tuned for more coverage tomorrow as the course starts to come together and the features get some "testing" when Cedric Guinea pigs them.


46 Comments

  • + 39
 that stepdown looks like death if you short it
  • + 10
 I know, I was hoping that was a step UP when I first saw it!
  • + 6
 same, the wall ride looks kick ass
  • - 2
 it looks like death if you go a bit off line aswell, because theres a white van in the way!
  • + 4
 not to mention the landing isnt very big
  • + 5
 looking forward to it! hope this year nobody gets badly hurt. Should be fun. Guys, if you wanna watch it live, you can see it in www.livestream.com/vca2011 and if anybody can afford getting here someday to check this out, totally worthwhile.
pardon my english, not my main language.
cheers!
  • + 1
 that's a live feed...when actually is the race?
  • + 1
 sorry ofr my ignorance (and my english) but, what´s a live feed? and the race is this sunday Wink
  • + 1
 a live feed is like watching TV on the internet. (sort of)
  • + 1
 oh ok, thnx for the tip lol hope it works
  • + 7
 Nothing like the fresh smell of a drop in the mornin...
  • + 1
 that is soo sick just think of a new ara in the city! rad
  • + 1
 Actually the official website of the race exceed the bandwith but here the link www.valparaisocerroabajo.cl
and here some pics from last year in rideordie.cl/vca2010.html
rideordie® has the best pics of every race here in chile .
See u on sunday Big Grin
  • + 1
 Actually the official website of the race exceed the bandwith but here the link www.valparaisocerroabajo.cl
and here some pics from last year in rideordie.cl/vca2010.html
rideordie® has the best pics of every race here in chile Smile .
See u in sunday Big Grin !
  • + 1
 Stupid question maybe but why are they using full knobblies on tarmac/concrete?

Slicks will be loads faster and grip like shit to a blanket on solid ground.

Like running dirt bike tyres on a gp bike.
  • + 1
 Maybe because he's Cedric Gracia. Big Grin
  • + 1
 1/3 of the course is on loose dirt/gravel and 2/3 on concrete
  • + 2
 If you havent seen footage from the race, check out channelmtb.com's coverage from 2010 channelmtb.com/colab/?p=28
  • + 1
 Great link. Thanks.
  • + 1
 Maybe a stupid question but why full nobblys?

Surely somthing like a larsen or a sb8 would destroy a minion on a urban course.
  • + 1
 vimeo.com/downtoearth this is an awesome video from last years version. Hope you enjoy it Wink
Director: Omar "wazza" Salas (not mine)
  • + 1
 This is our "Woodstock" for people of DH in Chile, The party is very, very funny and sick, so many beeeeers last year... Holysh.*..t
  • + 1
 leaving to valparaiso tonight...hell yeah!!!! chek out more reports, photos and videos, here at www.rideandsmile.com
  • + 1
 Here a crash in the road gap some years ago Smile www.pinkbike.com/video/167432
  • + 1
 Sick looking course!

Was it just me or did anyone else think Victor Herresman looked bald in that video?
  • + 2
 Todos a sudamerica a ridear en los mejores points del sur!!!!
  • + 1
 I like how they had to go through all that just for a small wall ride when bmx riders can do it with out boards Ha
  • + 2
 This whole course is just crazy Eek
  • + 1
 sendero maya Tegucigalpa Honduras 26 de febrero 2011
  • + 1
 Holy Crap! We need races like that here!
  • + 2
 Cool.Cedric rocks.
  • + 1
 Nice coverage, Fraser! Course is looking sick.
  • + 1
 crazy course! WTF this wall ride man?
  • + 2
 can i try pleassssss lol
  • + 1
 damn i want to do that track!
  • + 1
 the wallride is the best part of the track!
  • + 1
 that looks like so much fun!
  • + 1
 so thats where the majin man went! welding all those frames!
  • + 1
 This is gona be so sick, someone should get some footage!
  • + 2
 gnarlyy
  • + 2
 waiting for sunday!!!
  • + 1
 epic and nice bike
  • + 1
 bangin
  • + 1
 So sick

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