Friday, December 11, 2009

Weird bikes

Harley PalangchaoThis image recently arrived in my inbox, courtesy of a friend who apparently lives at his computer, forwarding anything and everything that catches his eye. And among all the dross, periodically something of interest surfaces.
When I first looked at the picture and saw the “Harley Palangchao” watermark, I interpreted it to mean this was the Palangchao’s concept of a Harley. (The Palangchaos apparently being some lost tribe who were introduced to western culture through Flintstones comic books.) But a little research uncovered an amazing Philippine sub-culture called the Cordillerans, or Igorot, and an even more amazing photographer – Harley Palangchao. Yup – that’s the photographer’s name and you can check out some of his work here.  It’s well worth a click over.
But back to the scooters. They race these rejects from the woodpile down a 4.5 kilometre mountain road course. It is a top event of the Imbayah Festival held every three years in Banaue Igugao. I expect the winner’s prize consists of bragging rights for the next three years and not having to spend the next several months recovering from road rash or worse.
Note the steering geometry and rubber-mounted front end for enhanced directional control and improved stability. image
And lest you think these things are for show only …..
This festival may just get added to the destinations bucket list. Looks like a blast!

10 comments:

  1. Wow, That's cool! Scary though, they are just road rash waiting to happen.

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  2. Crazy stuff! Talk about ATGATT, and some of those riders looked a bit uncomfortable in the corners, I saw a couple of them go wide. I love the rear brake pedal, great to see things like that.

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  3. I had my money on Miguel Hailwood and Juan Agostini for a one-two finish!

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  4. p.s. If you don't know Mike Hailwood or Giacomo Agostini, you've got a lot to learn about bike racing.

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  5. Pretty amazing stuff! Next time I am there I hope to check this out -thanks for posting this!

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  6. tmos - except Hailwood and Agostini would both have had their front wheels off the ground!

    Lance - we'll expect pictures.

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  7. Mr. M - hard to tell how fast they are going, but fast enough I expect to do some serious damage. Still, it looks like fun - wobbles and all.

    Andrew/cpa3485 - I liked the rear brake "system" too - primitive but at least somewhat effective I assume.

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  8. hmmm, ive always heard the Philippines is a must do, very cool...

    hey, canajun, happy holidays to you and yours :)

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  9. Ms. M. - It does look beautiful. And a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you too. Hope Santa is good to you and Bob.

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