Race 2019 race schedule

GrantT

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Oct 2, 2012
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Setagaya
#41
So that's why you were lapping so fast, so your children didn't have time to get bored between sightings.

Not much to see in the video really. Just lots of people using their brakes way too often.
 
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andywood

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Apr 8, 2008
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Niigata
#42
So that's why you were lapping so fast, so your children didn't have time to get bored between sightings.

Not much to see in the video really. Just lots of people using their brakes way too often.
All that fast lapping took it out of me and I've been sick in bed for 3 days this week!

Or maybe full summer kit for the early morning TT was a bad idea...

I know what you mean about braking.

Although I feel technical skills have let me down in the last few races I've ridden.

I've still got trauma after crashing out at fuji speedway. Though I remember you did the same a couple of years ago? And seem to have got over it?

Andy
 

andywood

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Apr 8, 2008
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#43
Good going! With the big prize pot they're putting in for the series winners, there should be some tough competition on the day. Including Iwashima-san and myself ;)

That's the course. Actually found another video from the same race with all three laps. It shows the downhill section at race pace, and also the final dip down and rise up to the finish line (missing from the above video), that is assuming the finish line is in the same place. Downhill starts at 23:40, finish line at 22:05.
Looking at that second video and the strava profile, it looks like:

A gentle downhill on narrow roads for the first part (9 or 10 minutes on the first lap, but around 50kph race pace).
Then a sharp left before a long steeper upward drag to 21 minutes.

Then a short fast winding descent before a final kick up to the finish line.

Run the other way, assuming the start is at the start/goal line:

A quick descent, followed by a rise.

Then the long steep descent. The descent looks wider and less technical this way? In which case it will be very fast.

The tight right straight after a steep descent.

Then the gentle climb, which kicks up towards the finish.

Does that sound about right?

Do you reckon a TT bike has an advantage run this way? (run the same direction as the video, I feel a road bike may be faster).

Cheers, Andy
 
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GrantT

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Oct 2, 2012
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Setagaya
#44
According to the web site, the 11 km road race will be ridden in the opposite direction this time, but the TT in the same direction. I feel like the TT has to start in the same place, within Katsurao Village. Can't say for sure if the finish will be in the same place though.

Crashes can do that for sure. One thing that's helped my handling has been cyclocross. Offroad the speeds are lower and the ground is softer, so while there's more falling, it's a relatively painless way to get a feel for grip and improve bike handling.

At Fuji I was taken out by a crash in front of me. It's given me a good reason to always ride near the front of the pack. And avoid enduros whenever possible.
 

andywood

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Apr 8, 2008
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#45
According to the web site, the 11 km road race will be ridden in the opposite direction this time, but the TT in the same direction. I feel like the TT has to start in the same place, within Katsurao Village. Can't say for sure if the finish will be in the same place though.

Crashes can do that for sure. One thing that's helped my handling has been cyclocross. Offroad the speeds are lower and the ground is softer, so while there's more falling, it's a relatively painless way to get a feel for grip and improve bike handling.

At Fuji I was taken out by a crash in front of me. It's given me a good reason to always ride near the front of the pack. And avoid enduros whenever possible.
Cheers, for the insight.

Going the same way, I wonder if a TT bike has any merit? Were people riding TT bikes last year?

Coming the other way, it may be advantageous on a gentle climb. But up the steeper climb it would probably slow you down.

What's your gut feeling? Road bike or TT bike?

Well done at Shuzenji! It's years since I rode there.

Bandai san is riding JPT this year. Looked like a baptism of fire. I watched the live stream as 43 years old Mancebo rode off the front breathing through his nose...

Andy
 

GrantT

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Oct 2, 2012
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Setagaya
#46
Having never ridden a TT bike and no experience other than seeing them around, I say take it for the pro visuals.
Ideal situation would be to bring both, pre-ride the course in the morning then decide. Racing on Saturday starts in the afternoon so plenty of time for recon.
 
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andywood

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Apr 8, 2008
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#49
Having never ridden a TT bike and no experience other than seeing them around, I say take it for the pro visuals.
Ideal situation would be to bring both, pre-ride the course in the morning then decide. Racing on Saturday starts in the afternoon so plenty of time for recon.
Cheers!

I studied the video a bit more.

It doesn't look like a course for a TT bike to be advantageous. Or more importantly, a course where I think I could use my current skill set to be competitive on. So I'll probably pass.

I have another TT in Fukushima later in April, so I'll focus on that.

Thanks for all the advice though. And good luck!

Andy
 
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baribari

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May 28, 2010
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Fukushima
#50
Today there was a 3-km TT on the same course as the stage of the 3rd edition of the Tour de Tochigi. Wish I had been able to sign up for it, since I was off today and could have gone. The slowest of the elite riders (its a UCI 2.2 race) still averaged about 40 km/h, which I suspect I could have done for three kilometers (4'30") on a really good day. I am going to check out the road race tomorrow.

Edit: Gah, the winner did 48.7 km/h, which is even faster than I had thought...

Edit 2: Found the live video! https://freshlive.tv/roadrace/265748
 
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Kangaeroo

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Jan 24, 2018
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#52
Yesterday, I got to race and it was the ride of my life! It was only my second-ever race, on a fold-up Brompton, in a tiger suit with flat shoes, on the Sodegahara Forest Raceway. TCC people and other cycling mates have helped with loads of advice over the past year or so, and I armed myself with that when the race started. I had three aims:
1. Make it through without a mechanical (my Brompton is notorious for breaking down <mainly because I haven't cared for it properly>). I had to stop in the previous year's race to adjust my seat post and wanted to avoid similarly lost time, though a puncture was my biggest fear.
2. Finish in a faster time than 2018 (when I averaged 30.02 km over the 12-km race)
3. Finish in the top 50 (I finished 52nd last year)

From a Le Mans-style start, I got off slowly, being well back on the grid. As I neared the end of the first lap, though, I noticed I was passing lots of other riders and moving towards bunches.
Midway through the second lap, I caught a couple of Italian riders I knew were being sponsored and was surprised to be hanging in so well. I drafted until they rode into a bigger group, which was even easier to stick with because of its size. Being in the group helped me stay in touch on the climb, easily my weakness, and I could push to the front of the group as we descended, and I held that position for the better part of a lap, through the straight and on until another mild climb, when the group swamped me again. The group was mostly a couple of teams riding as a team, with individuals like me hanging on and an awesome woman rider holding her own.
As the bell to sound the last lap sounded, I was astonished to find myself holding on with the group, powering past one of the sponsored Italians and surprised when he didn't sweep past me again. The group was starting to lap other competitors and the stragglers were sometimes straying. The teams were still riding as a team, but were not keeping a line and swaying from space to space. I found myself slowing down to avoid hitting the stragglers. As we neared the second-to-last curve before the final straight and I was pinned down by cyclists either side of me, I fell well behind the group and couldn't catch up on entering the straight as I had done in previous laps. I made up some ground on the straight, but not quite enough to catch up to the group again, so I had been dropped and would probably have fallen even further behind had the race gone on, so I was pleased the race was over.
Not as pleased as I would later be when I found out what had happened. A breakaway had dominated the race and were well ahead, but the group I had ridden with turned out to be the leading group! Crikey, I hadn't been expecting that! I thought I was doing well, but not that good. I ended up finishing 17th overall with an official time of 12km@20:45:823=34.68kmh, which left me pretty chuffed. Well beyond my wildest dreams, though not in the class of a lot of people here. Nonetheless, I'm really grateful for the way people have graciously helped with my cycling since I came in touch with TCC.
Not quite as descriptive or exciting as some of the race posts here, I think, especially @andywood
Sounds a bit pathetic perhaps, but this race was one of the highlights of my life (Having gotten so high on my own mediocrity, I can now stop criticizing commentators here when a Japanese athlete finishes in 32nd place...)! God, I love cycling! Thanks all for helping me pursue it.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
1,958
1,607
133
Niigata
#54
Yesterday, I got to race and it was the ride of my life! It was only my second-ever race, on a fold-up Brompton, in a tiger suit with flat shoes, on the Sodegahara Forest Raceway. TCC people and other cycling mates have helped with loads of advice over the past year or so, and I armed myself with that when the race started. I had three aims:
1. Make it through without a mechanical (my Brompton is notorious for breaking down <mainly because I haven't cared for it properly>). I had to stop in the previous year's race to adjust my seat post and wanted to avoid similarly lost time, though a puncture was my biggest fear.
2. Finish in a faster time than 2018 (when I averaged 30.02 km over the 12-km race)
3. Finish in the top 50 (I finished 52nd last year)

From a Le Mans-style start, I got off slowly, being well back on the grid. As I neared the end of the first lap, though, I noticed I was passing lots of other riders and moving towards bunches.
Midway through the second lap, I caught a couple of Italian riders I knew were being sponsored and was surprised to be hanging in so well. I drafted until they rode into a bigger group, which was even easier to stick with because of its size. Being in the group helped me stay in touch on the climb, easily my weakness, and I could push to the front of the group as we descended, and I held that position for the better part of a lap, through the straight and on until another mild climb, when the group swamped me again. The group was mostly a couple of teams riding as a team, with individuals like me hanging on and an awesome woman rider holding her own.
As the bell to sound the last lap sounded, I was astonished to find myself holding on with the group, powering past one of the sponsored Italians and surprised when he didn't sweep past me again. The group was starting to lap other competitors and the stragglers were sometimes straying. The teams were still riding as a team, but were not keeping a line and swaying from space to space. I found myself slowing down to avoid hitting the stragglers. As we neared the second-to-last curve before the final straight and I was pinned down by cyclists either side of me, I fell well behind the group and couldn't catch up on entering the straight as I had done in previous laps. I made up some ground on the straight, but not quite enough to catch up to the group again, so I had been dropped and would probably have fallen even further behind had the race gone on, so I was pleased the race was over.
Not as pleased as I would later be when I found out what had happened. A breakaway had dominated the race and were well ahead, but the group I had ridden with turned out to be the leading group! Crikey, I hadn't been expecting that! I thought I was doing well, but not that good. I ended up finishing 17th overall with an official time of 12km@20:45:823=34.68kmh, which left me pretty chuffed. Well beyond my wildest dreams, though not in the class of a lot of people here. Nonetheless, I'm really grateful for the way people have graciously helped with my cycling since I came in touch with TCC.
Not quite as descriptive or exciting as some of the race posts here, I think, especially @andywood
Sounds a bit pathetic perhaps, but this race was one of the highlights of my life (Having gotten so high on my own mediocrity, I can now stop criticizing commentators here when a Japanese athlete finishes in 32nd place...)! God, I love cycling! Thanks all for helping me pursue it.
Great ride and great report! Sounds like you've got the bug!?

How did they decide the start grid? I saw a nice picture of folded bikes lined up. If it's first come first served, I often just sneak in to the front just before the start. Just look like you know what you're doing!

Anyway it seems like you made your way up through the field quickly. Also you employed the "first into the bottom, last out of the top" strategy on the climbs, which saves energy on a course like that, especially if climbing isn't your strong point.

If you are annoyed that you didn't know your position on the road, you can get a friend to use a small whiteboard to let you know how you are doing. We do this for two up enduros as it is almost impossible to know where the front of the field is.

But it sounds like you had a great ride. Driving the pace in the front group! And what a cracking average speed!?!

When I read that it was "one of the highlights of your life", you gave me renewed passion to go out there and enjoy burning the road up.

Looking forward to hearing about your next endeavor!

Cheers,

Andy
 
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