"Half-Pucci"!

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,205
292
113
Kawaguchi, Saitama
Less wordy "Final report".

Sorry Phil,
I deleted the original report in a moment of …..

Anyway, here’s the condensed version – probably still wordier than necessary though.

I met Christoph at 9:00, after getting off the train at Haijima.
We both met Alan at Musashi-Itsukaichi station at 9:30, and also met Ash & Yasuhiro (both members of TCC) on their own training ride.

10:00 – Alan, Christoph and I headed very quickly to the start of the climb towards Tomin-no-mori. After it started going up-hill though, Alan & Christoph took off up ahead of me and waited at the top for me to arrive.

11:30 – At 32km, I reached the top & and stopped only to put on my wind-breaker, before the 3 of us rolled down to the lake.

11:50 – At 44km, we stopped for the last time to fill up our drink bottles at the vending machine there. Then we rolled to the start of the final climb (Nokogiri-yama).

12:20 – At 57km, we started climbing immediately – 7 long, steep km’s on roads that a mountain-goat would think twice about!

13:05 – At 64km, I finally reached the top to find Alan & Christoph waiting for me (after Christoph had punctured on the way up); but still without stopping, kept going over towards our original starting place – Musashi-Itsukaichi.

13:49 – At 84km, we finally arrived back at the station – 11 minutes ahead of schedule. Average speed: 22.4km/h.

Alan & Christoph are both great guys to go riding with, and were very considerate and patient with me the whole way. Travis

That’s basically it, I suppose.
I did this ride to find out if I’d actually be able to complete the race this weekend. And after this last ride, I’m fairly confident that I can do it, but it also showed me my own weaknesses, and I guess I got a bit depressed about not being able to go as fast as A & C. But you get that, I suppose.

>Christoph: Are you OK? I’m glad I wasn’t there to see your accident.
>Deej: Hope they give you a new/better bike (in your favourite color-scheme).

T
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
11
38
Setagaya
Great report Travis . . .

Never too wordy. I always look forward to your reports. They are honest, real and very Travis (which is a good thing). Please carry on telling it like it is!

By the way, Christoph and Alan will leave most riders behind. You should not feel unhappy. Every weekend I get the shit kicked out of me. You get used to it :D

Cheers,

Philip

P.S. 3 hours 49 minutes without a cigarette! Congratulations.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
Cheers for posting that Travis--I'd been searching blogs and whatnot wondering why I couldn't see it :)

I really enjoy reading the ride reports, the wordier the better; at the very least, they're consolation for not being there oneself, and they are always sources of both inspiration and humilty (well, more of the latter in my case)... Good luck to all of you on the race next weekend!
 

Deej

Maximum Pace
Oct 13, 2007
1,018
149
83
Setagaya
>Deej: Hope they give you a new/better bike (in your favourite color-scheme).

T
Thanks, Travis. I'll let you know what happens with the bike.

I enjoyed the report. And the more words, the merrier.

Good luck next weekend!

>Cristoph, did you really end up on the hood of a car? That sounds frightening. I can't imagine how you could pull off such a stunt without hurting the bike! Take care, and I hope to join you on one of your mega rides soon. I may be able to borrow my buddy's Bianchi for a while (although he doesn't know it yet).
 

AlanW

Maximum Pace
Jan 30, 2007
1,214
438
103
Tokyo
Sunday Sunshine

After some last-minute changes of plans (due to the Tropical Storm on Saturday) I was able to join Travis and Christoph for the "Half-Pucci" ride in the hills near Okutama-ko.
Driving out to Mushasi-Itsukaichi I was treated to a spectacular view of Fuji-san with a new coat of snow sparkling in the clear "after-storm" air. I rolled into the station car park with time to spare, so got changed and ready to go, and ate a pre-ride banana for a last-minute energy boost.
Travis & Christoph appeared at about 9:45; we chatted for a while to Ash and Yasuhiro-san who were setting out on a different route.
At 10am on-the-dot we set off up the gentle climb that eventually leads to Tomi-no-mori. Christoph took the first pull at the front, setting a good pace in the high 20s (km/h) up the road. We took turns at the front, each doing about a kilometre before the other two would come past. As we climbed the hill we reeled in various riders in front of us. Christoph and I were going a bit faster as the gradient steepened, so we turned around at the top to meet up with Travis again, keeping with the "no stops" ethos of this ride.
Travis soon appeared, so we all turned down the hill to Okutama-ko; Christoph in the lead, then me, then Travis. We held this formation all the way down the hill, carving through the turns and tucking down onto our bikes on the straights for extra speed. There were still some damp corners which demanded respect, but mostly the road was dry and grippy.
A lightning fast pit stop at the ramen shop allowed us to refill our water bottles, while a team of mechanics in overalls changed all our tyres, wiped our glasses, and sent us on our way. OK, that didn't really happen but it was still a Formula One stop.
Along the North side of the lake the pace really picked up as we took our turns at the front. We were only passed by a few cars the whole way. My tyres hummed along on the mostly smooth surface, and the minimal change in gradient allowed us to keep the speed high.
After a slight wrong turn (sorry folks) we found the north entrance to Nokogiriyama and the road immediately started to climb, steeply. I had an energy bar to help get me up the hill. The road surface was dreadful, covered in leaf litter, pine needles and small branches brought down by the previous day's heavy rain. And these were all lying on a cracked and broken surface that resembled a gravel road more than tarmac. Again, Cristoph and I started to pull ahead; I think my lower gears were giving me an advantage on the steep gradient. There were a few lengths between us when I heard a bang from Christoph's bike, but he appeared to still be riding so I thought his gears had just slipped. I learned at the top he had had a puncture; no surprise given the amount of gravel and branches our tyres were rolling over.
At the top I waited rather than tackle yet more of the rough surface. Christoph and Travis arrived at the top; Travis just rolled over the summit and kept going. Going down was just as rough as coming up! I was glad I was on my new smooth riding bike, not my old bone-shaker. Our speed was only 30 km/h due to all the rubbish on the road, with heavy braking needed all the way down. Near the bottom was a tunnel that was completely unlit, so we crept though. Eventually the road became smoother, and our speed increased, and when we turned back onto route 7, with a following wind and a slight downhill, we were flying in formation once again.
In only a few minutes we arrived back at the station where Travis jumped off his bike and ran towards the station building. We thought he was going for his cigarettes but was in fact taking a photo of the station clock :D

Great ride, guys!
Christoph, hope you are OK after your argument with the car :confused: