When it comes to mountain bike racing, few disciplines are as spectacular as urban downhill. The races see competitors rolling with speed on a steep course set in a town or city-based mountain environment. There is a lot to do. You’ll see runners descending stairs, navigating narrow alleyways, jumping over huge man-made jumps, going over rooftops and buses, and in some cases, passing through buildings!
How can I watch the races?
The high octane races of Red Bull Monserrate Cerro Abajo and Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo will be broadcast live on Red Bull TV on their respective dates. The Red Bull Monserrate Cerro Abajo will take place on Saturday February 5, while the Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo is scheduled to take place on Sunday February 27.
Note that confirmation of the Valparaíso race has yet to be confirmed by authorities pending approval under Covid restrictions.
Red Bull Monserrate Cerro Abajo – February 5
Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo – February 27
Live broadcast times for Red Bull TV coverage of the race will appear here once the race is confirmed.
Where exactly do the races take place?
The Red Bull Monserrate Cerro Abajo takes place in the streets of Bogotá, the capital of Colombia, located at an altitude of 2,600 m. Above rises an imposing mountain – Monserrate. The mountain is accessible by a footpath, from which part of the mountain bikers must descend until the finish.
The port city of Valparaíso, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the location of Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo. The Chilean city was an important trading and shipping hub in the 19th century and many of the colorful houses and buildings that stand on the hills were built during colonial times. The hillside barrios are connected by a maze of narrow lanes.
How are the lessons?
Urban downhill courses in South America share a few defining characteristics. They are steep, have long sections of stairs, and feature fast straights as well as sharp turns in incredibly narrow streets. To help increase speed, the courses also feature man-made obstacles such as wooden ramps and wallrides.
The Monserrate track is 2.4 km long, making it the longest of any urban downhill circuit in the world. It is heavy and consists of 27 obstacles. Highlights of the course include the jumps at La Iglesia and La Estrella, a passage through a tunnel, a 7m high jump at La Cascada and the air gap over the turnstiles at the foot of the mountain.
The Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo course is approximately 2 km long. It descends from a starting point on the hill before passing Bismarck Square and Atahualpa Street towards the Fountain of Neptune in Plaza Aníbal Pinto in the city center. In the past, runners had to climb onto the roof of a house along the famous Boccaccio stairs.
Just like the World Cup, there are practices and qualifications before the finals
As with any other downhill mountain bike race, there is a small amount of practice allowed on the course as the trails will take some getting used to. This is followed by a qualifying race so the numbers can be whittled down to a manageable number for the final. There is only one race, with the fastest time being declared the winner.
Who runs in Monserrate and Valparaíso?
Who won the last time the races were held?
Red Bull Monserrate Cerro Abajo, in its current incarnation, has been racing since 2019. Previous winners are Colombian Matthias Gutierrez (2019), Tomáš Slavík (2020) and Frenchman Adrien Loren (2021). Loron won with a time of 4:31.485. Watch Loren’s race below:
Adrien Loron’s winning journey
Red Bull Valparaíso Cerro Abajo was last raced in 2019 when Pedro Ferreira claimed victory. Slavík has already won two editions of the race in 2017 and 2018. Watch Ferreira’s race from 2019 below:
Winning race – Red Bull Valparaiso Cerro Abajo 2019