Video: Brazilian cyclist drafts lorry... at 124 kilometres an hour

Evandro Portela attaches Go Pro to back of truck to record his ride - and retrieves it after hitting top speed

by Simon_MacMichael   April 12, 2014  

Brazilian lorry-drafting cyclists

Remember the video we posted last week of a cyclist in Manchester tailgaiting a truck? Well, he’s got nothing on this rider from Brazil who last month clocked up an astonishing 124 kilometres an hour while drafting a lorry – and all filmed on a Go Pro camera that he attached to the back of the truck and retrieved after hitting that top speed.

To begin with, it’s just a couple of guys riding behind a truck as they pick up speed, but things get interesting at around about the halfway point when the road heads downhill, including some bunny hops at more than 100kph - and they're having an awful lot of fun, too.

The video’s description on YouTube doesn’t give too much away, but it does pin the language down to Portuguese.

The sponsor of one of the rider’s kits, ATP Gráfica Editora, is a graphic design business in the city of Curitiba, in southern Brazil, and a little bit of detective work led us to the Facebook page of the cyclist who took the video, Evandro Portela.

In response to comments about his apparent lack of regard for his own safety, one of his friends says: “It's not for everyone ... I’ve known Evandro Portela for a long time and I've never seen anyone ride a bike like this guy.

“As they say in all the extreme sports TV shows, "Don’t try this at home” … So if you’re risk conscious and value your safety, leave it to those who developed the technique. He knows the risks he’s taking.

“Enjoy the video and put the criticism to one side because each of them knows what he’s doing.”

At 77 miles an hour, the speed Portela set is some way short of the 112mph that Guy Martin achieved last year in a programme for Channel 4.

Unlike Portela, who was riding a Wilier road bike, Martin set his speed on a bike built for the purpose, the lorry had a massive fairing attached to the rear of the cab, and the Isle of Man TT star was wearing motorcycle leathers, not Lycra.

40 user comments

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Most impressive thing about that is casually mounting the camera into the truck then picking it up again afterwards. One handed at 70mph. Proper skill.

Nice work by the riders and that looks like a brilliant road.

posted by crazy-legs [610 posts]
12th April 2014 - 14:02


mass grande cojones!!!

and the control to take the camera off, and then film your bike and self whilst 5- friction- feet from a lorry at super-speed! grande cojones indeed!

posted by themartincox [417 posts]
12th April 2014 - 15:59


Pah! If he was that good, he would've overtaken the truck... Cool
¡Con dos cojones!

don simon's picture

posted by don simon [351 posts]
12th April 2014 - 16:18


Cajones. Big cajones...

Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

jmaccelari's picture

posted by jmaccelari [196 posts]
12th April 2014 - 17:11


Brilliant!! I thought I did well once behind a manure tractor!......never again

posted by Flying Heron [47 posts]
12th April 2014 - 17:47


Slightly sceptical about the top speed. By the Gift of Sheldon, 77mph on 53-11 on 23mm tyres is a cadence of over 200.

Mad though. Chance of being killed by a pothole or a dead badger very high.

posted by SteppenHerring [245 posts]
12th April 2014 - 19:00


Look at his chainrings towards the end of the video - big ring looks a mite bigger than 53t.

Illegal (probably), irresponsible, stupid, but very, very fun. I'd doff my chapeau but I've just taken it off in order to draught this bus.

posted by jamesv [7 posts]
12th April 2014 - 19:58


Can only applaud and reel my jaw back in. He must be uncomfortable sitting on his bike with his massive balls.

posted by s_lim [147 posts]
12th April 2014 - 19:58


What a pair of guys, top top riding absolutely loved it, crazy stuff but hey respect !! Applause

posted by 124g [19 posts]
12th April 2014 - 20:02


jamesv wrote:
Look at his chainrings towards the end of the video - big ring looks a mite bigger than 53t.

I hadn't spotted that. Plugging Nik Bowdler's gearing in to Sheldon, I get a more manageable 150rpm.

(Nik once overtook me on a TT turning his 77-12 gear and it was like some sort of stealth craft coming past)

posted by SteppenHerring [245 posts]
12th April 2014 - 20:08


cyclingDMlondon wrote:
I'd have watched it all, but for the infantile 'rock' soundtrack. Can we now add cycling videos to combat aircraft footage, to the list of things that apparently can't be filmed without some knob thrashing an electric guitar?

"For whom the bell tolls" was a rather apt piece of music I thought.

brokenorange's picture

posted by brokenorange [24 posts]
12th April 2014 - 20:32


I like that he bunny hops the white lines for safety, seriously talented.

posted by nicholassmith [71 posts]
12th April 2014 - 20:46


cyclingDMlondon wrote:
I'd have watched it all, but for the infantile 'rock' soundtrack. Can we now add cycling videos to combat aircraft footage, to the list of things that apparently can't be filmed without some knob thrashing an electric guitar?

That's not infantile...that's Metallica!

posted by mikese13 [10 posts]
12th April 2014 - 21:48


Reminds me of that scene from Breaking Away.

posted by mikese13 [10 posts]
12th April 2014 - 21:57



A truck travelling at 124kmh!


posted by Airzound [637 posts]
12th April 2014 - 23:20


They are speaking Portugese - they are bolas not cojones! Still blwdy big, though.

Tovarishch's picture

posted by Tovarishch [50 posts]
13th April 2014 - 4:30


It's not so much the speed as I am sure there are many of us who have done this in the past, maybe at much faster speeds it's just we didn't have cameras to record it. It's the fact that he attaches the camera to the back of the lorry and films himself one handed? That's the dangerous bit.

This is the 2nd article I have seen on Road CC that shows riders drafting. Will we be getting a "how to draft" article soon Laughing My recommendations would be the A1 near Stamford nice down hill section there to get in behind lorries, potential for drafting above 60mph or in the South West the dual carriage way near Honiton lends it self to potential drafting at around 50- 70mph.

Of course not all idea drafting roads are dual carriage ways. Shoreham to Brighton has many buses braking the speed limit and it is relatively easy to get in behind them although not recommended if you aren't responsive to sudden stops of the bus.

Or should we all be condemning this as highly irresponsible riding Worried someone is going to come a cropper soon doing this.

Plus one of the guys wasn't wearing a helmet in this video Wave

Rupert's picture

posted by Rupert [138 posts]
13th April 2014 - 4:33


I actually know these guys! They are a group of Elite riders who train together and are very good at this. It is not a one time fluke!

Good to know they were close to Martin`s record. If I am not mistaken they use a 175 crank with 55x11s.

posted by mightyflav [1 posts]
13th April 2014 - 16:50


brilliant - the driver was obviously in on it - but that takes some huge ballons Applause

posted by viveLaPants [93 posts]
13th April 2014 - 19:11


Well call me a big yellow chicken but I have never drafted nor would I ever draft another vehicle, and I think the people who do it are maniacs! (Just to add some balance to the comments section.)

posted by chokofingrz [367 posts]
14th April 2014 - 12:22


Jaw-dropping stuff, not least the tekkers in bunny-hopping/one-handed/no-handed at the sort of speed. But cycling on the motorway? F**k that! wrote:
The video’s description on YouTube doesn’t give too much away, but it does pin the language down to Portuguese.

Brazilians speaking Portuguese? Who'd have thunk it...

posted by parksey [339 posts]
14th April 2014 - 13:00


The guy actually mentions the crankset he is using during the video - at a certain point he shouts: "55x11!!"

posted by rmabreu [2 posts]
14th April 2014 - 13:19


Now, if anybody with Portuguese can provide a translation, that would be very nice...Also the names of the guys.

I would have thought 175 cracks a bit too long for his super fast twiddling at the max speed - looked like he was at about 130 rpm.

In my foolish youth a trio of us would very occasionally draft lorries going up the Hendon Way. We knew the road, did it for no more than a few hundred metres, and never went above 30 - 40 mph.

There is a story that in the late 50s early 60s, during the London-Bath-London 200 mile reliability trial, which went down the A4, the fast men would draft and occasionally overtake lorries, which had a speed limit then of 40 mph. Not many cars about and the lorry drivers were (supposedly) sympathetic.

I'm also pretty sure I saw a very well known time triallist drafting a lorry on the A1(M) in the early 80s.

posted by ChairRDRF [208 posts]
14th April 2014 - 21:31


There's several uploads of this guy on You Tube. One of them has a gang hammering down the hard shoulder as he passes them. Totally unreal.

giff77's picture

posted by giff77 [1099 posts]
14th April 2014 - 23:14


I hope they wear a base layer in case they fall! Wink

posted by Colin Peyresourde [1377 posts]
15th April 2014 - 3:30


They aren't doing 124 kph.

posted by dogcc [132 posts]
15th April 2014 - 19:31


Ok, it is Evandro Portela.

BTW, 124 kph is likely for the few moments when he is really twiddling it.

posted by ChairRDRF [208 posts]
16th April 2014 - 21:42


A bit more information here:

"Evandro Luiz PORTELA tested positive for the use of Phentermine and Stanozolol in the Volta do Estado de São Paulo, in March 2006. Because this was his second doping rules violation, after a positive test for Anabolica in 2002, he was suspended for life by the UCI in July 2006. "

He has used substances with a tendency to increase aggression. And he has been banned from racing. So maybe he wants to ride a bike and get some kicks...

Also see Metallica free version of this video here

and a couple of other videos of him (with camera on lorry)

posted by ChairRDRF [208 posts]
16th April 2014 - 22:06

1 Like

What a strange little man

posted by rascal6000 [7 posts]
18th April 2014 - 23:26


Not that fast: most pro riders travel at those speeds without a massive truck windbreak in front of them. Even I've clocked 100kph on descent smooth down hill Tarmac.

posted by brucedinsmore23... [3 posts]
11th November 2014 - 20:03