The fast and the fatuous: wheelchair street racer scoots through Barca

Playa de L'Ampolla - Image Teulada-Moraira Ajuntament

POLICE in Barcelona have been left scratching their heads after a video shot by a motorcyclist was posted on You Tube, which appears to depict a wheelchair-bound man going hell for leather down Carrer de Muntaner, one of the Catalan city’s busiest thoroughfares.

Displaying a fast-and-loose approach to the welfare off both himself and other road users, the daredevil pilot is seen spanking along the bus lane, before pulling out to overtake as he weaves through rush-hour traffic.

The video has gone down extremely well with social media users, who have named the fearless flyer ‘Rapido y Furioso’ (Fast and Furious), and suggested to Fernando Alonso that he swaps his misfiring Formula One car for the man’s wheels.

Eschewing safety-wear such as a helmet or protective clothing, the plucky pilot forced drivers to brake behind him as he changed lanes, before putting on a spurt as he gathered speed.

A spokesman for the city police said it was “definitely illegal” to ride a wheelchair through moving traffic, as he said: “We’ve only seen the video on YouTube. We didn’t see it as it happened and so we haven’t been able to do anything. The man in the wheelchair remains unidentified as it’s hard to identify someone in a wheelchair in a video. It isn’t like a car where you have a number plate.

“The video is very odd, but from a policing point of view, if no damage was done and it was something ‘invisible’, then there’s not much we can do. The world does sometimes go mad.”

He added that the authorities were still unsure whether the caper was a hoax or PR stunt, since “it wouldn’t be the first time. Sometimes these weird videos go viral and then it turns out that they’re part of an advertising campaign. You never know.”

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