Video of trials cyclists exhibiting their skills are always something to behold, but there just isn’t much one can do to vary the visual element — we’re talking about obstacle courses after all, and obstacle courses for trials cyclists always seem to look like… obstacle courses for trials cyclists. Except when they don’t. Instead of blistering sun beating down on absurdly shaped ramps, Scottish trials cyclist Danny MacAskill’s trials cycling videos are set in urban cityscapes and rural environments that play as big a part as his insane moves. “Imaginate” takes it a step further with a cinematic and whimsical approach, allowing us to explore MacAskill’s childhood imagination.
The Imaginate project has been in development for two years, which is entirely believable considering the video is so unbelievable that, short of a Faustian pact or magic lamp involvement, only after years of practice could even a seasoned pro execute these kind of maneuvers. What tricks and acrobatics boy-Danny sees his toy cyclist doing, the real life Danny actually does on a huge sound stage — tumbling over rubber balls, climbing oversized building blocks, ramping up and down larger-than-life playing cards and leaping across train tracks. We even see him using Play Doh at one point. But the playful nature of the video is an added bonus, because the way MacAskill (nicknamed Megaskill) manipulates his bike is nothing short of miraculous, which is to say, gracefully and without a hint of error. The project is sponsored by Red Bull, which apparently gives bikes wings as well.