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Video: Bike messenger races taxi across Chicago

A race of freeways versus city streets

What's faster across the city of Chicago, a top bike messenger or a taxi? In this video, we find out.

Nico Deportago-Cabrera is one of the world's fastest bike messengers, according to Red Bull, who made this clip. Does he know the streets of Chicago better than a cabbie? And if he does can he get from downtown to the northern centre faster?

They set out at the Willis Tower, formerly known as the Sears Tower and the tallest building in the world from its completion in 1973 until the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia claimed the title in 1998.

Their destination is Wrigleyville, location of the Chicago Cubs ground at Wrigley Field, which you may remember from the movie The Blues Brothers.

It's 5.6 miles by bike, 7.2 miles by car, but the cab can take the fast freeways while Nico has to battle surface streets with their traffic, lights and slow-moving buses.

Who's fastest? Whose machine reigns supreme? Watch and find out.

John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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