A stray, four-doored rider caused huge problems on the opening day of the annual Tour of Costa Rica cycling race Monday. On the route’s first leg in Alajeula a wayward taxi driver ended up in the middle of the street, causing at least three cyclists to crash into his car.
In the video, the taxi driver accelerates out of his parking space just as the first wave of cyclists comes down the street. A woman offscreen can be heard saying, “That is the dumbest taxi driver.”
When he tries to turn left off the street, riders crash into the side of his car, including one who flips over the taxi. The fallen rider then begins screaming, “Oh God,” and looks to be in obvious pain as the rest of the cyclists pause to check on him and the taxi.
In another video taken from the event, cyclists are shown going up to the side door of the taxi to confront the driver who is stuck in the middle of an Alajuela street while racing cyclists zoom past. The taxi driver, who was identified as Wilberth Arce, told local news outlets that the accident wasn’t his fault, and that the cyclists kicked his car.
“I’m out here trying to make an honorable salary and the cyclists are the ones who acted out with vandalism when they began to kick my car,” Arce told daily La Nación. He told the local radio station 91.5 FM that he was crossing the street when he heard sirens and tried to turn off the street. But just then, he said, officials told him to turn left, and that’s when he believes the accident happened.
Costa Rican cyclist Nieves Carrasco won the first stage of the Tour of Costa Rica, which kicked off Monday just before 9 a.m. in Alajuela. The 11-stage event that traverses the country ends on Christmas Day in Heredia.