Not in Kansai, but closer to you than the Kanagawans. I'm in Gifu, 40km NE of Nagoya city.
I saw a Kyoto Rapha gentleman's ride vid on Youtube, it looks fantastic. Like Bawbag, I'm into checking out those roads north of Kyoto. Will the gentleman's ride be held again this year? I'd be into that for sure.
The gents ride requires an invitation and you have to be apart of a group. I did the Yatsugatake gents race. Only 160 km but included an 11km dirt climb. I think your best bet would be to ask at your local Rapha shop or send them an email. You could just get on your bike and ride it! I have the gps from the gents ride if you want it. The riders are started at different times if your entire team doesn't finish then the team doesn't get placed. Entry was a 6 pack of your favorite microbrew witch was shared at the end over Yakiniku. What impressed me most was the cinematography created from the event. I can always watch it and remember. I wish all races were like this. It's a shame it's so exclusive, but that also is an appeal (if you are invited!)
Agreed....the teamwork aspect of the ride made it quite memorable. I was impressed with the quality of beer at the after party.....our team brought a case of racer5, and Stone IPA, with plenty of other great Japanese craft beer to be had.
But yes, it is invite only, and rightfully so. Its one of Rapha's main local branding tools and they should control the event as they see fit.