Nasu-Shiobara

Yuhji

Warming-Up
Aug 28, 2016
3
0
1
34
#1
Hi,

Have been lurking the site for a quite a while, some great stuff about Japan and Cycling on here!


I am a Japanese Citizen living overseas and am moving from Canada to Nasu-Shiobara, Tochigi in a few months, and am...

1. Looking for a club and some people to ride with in the Nasu-Shiobara area. Ideally, a mix of racing and social rides. I can speak Japanese at the Native Level (thanks Mom!) but my reading and writing needs work. I know there is a local pro team, Nasu Blasen, which is pretty neat for a small town. Maybe they can point me in the right direction?

2. There is a velodrome in Utsunomiya (which is pretty close to Nasu-Shiobara) and would also be interested in racing there. How is it to race on the velodrome in Japan, and are there categories like road racing? I raced the local weekly series at the velodrome in Burnaby, BC and have ridden the track in London, Ontario. Track racing is so much more interesting than road racing! Gogogogogog sprint!

3. I have raced in Canada and the USA at the Pro 1/2 (Don't get me wrong, I'm more of a Cat 2 than a Pro), and am getting back into racing shape. How is the racing scene in the Kanto area?

I have taken my road bicycle to Japan before, and absolutely adore the riding. Smooth roads, mountains everywhere, convenience stores and vending machines to recharge, and the best food in the world. I'm not sure what more I want in terms of cycling.


Anyway Thanks for reading, and hope to see some of you on the roads soon.

Yuhji
 

GrantT

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2012
1,614
1,192
143
Setagaya
#2
Hi Yuhji,

I can't help with the first two questions, but can help a little with the third. My info is not that good though. Hopefully someone can correct me.

One-off races:
Hill climb events make up a decent majority of the races in Japan. Lots around.
Next are the "enduro" type races that are ridden on car racing circuits like Motegi and Fuji Speedway or other closed roads (eg, Hitachinaka Enduro).
After that, there are a few events with a course similar to something from a grand tour (Tour de Nikko, Giro de Hotaka, Niseko Classic).
All these "one-off" types of events are open to anyone and generally don't really have categories, or if they do, you can enter whichever you want.

Then there are organizations that hold races under a stricter category basis. The JCFC and JBCF the the two I vaguely know. JBCF is the biggest, and you have to be a member of a registered team to enter their races. I think continental teams compete at the highest JBCF level in the J-Pro Tour, and below that are E1 E2 E3 levels that are probably similar to Cat 1/2.

Best thing would be to ride around, see what jerseys people are wearing, talk to them and/or visit the shop team they are a member of, find a team that is a good fit for you and get used to lots and lots and lots of climbing.
 

Yuhji

Warming-Up
Aug 28, 2016
3
0
1
34
#3
What a fantastic reply, Mr. GrantT.

Thank you for taking the time to write such a well thoughtout and eloquent response.

I am a bit short on time today, since I am going for a ride but thank you for this detailed information, and I'm sure I'll have more questions in the future.

I think that is a great idea with just waiting until I get there, and find a club/team by face to face rather than looking online.

Cheers,
Yuhji
 

kyoazu

Maximum Pace
Nov 5, 2014
69
36
48
27
#4
Hi,

Have been lurking the site for a quite a while, some great stuff about Japan and Cycling on here!


I am a Japanese Citizen living overseas and am moving from Canada to Nasu-Shiobara, Tochigi in a few months, and am...

1. Looking for a club and some people to ride with in the Nasu-Shiobara area. Ideally, a mix of racing and social rides. I can speak Japanese at the Native Level (thanks Mom!) but my reading and writing needs work. I know there is a local pro team, Nasu Blasen, which is pretty neat for a small town. Maybe they can point me in the right direction?

2. There is a velodrome in Utsunomiya (which is pretty close to Nasu-Shiobara) and would also be interested in racing there. How is it to race on the velodrome in Japan, and are there categories like road racing? I raced the local weekly series at the velodrome in Burnaby, BC and have ridden the track in London, Ontario. Track racing is so much more interesting than road racing! Gogogogogog sprint!

3. I have raced in Canada and the USA at the Pro 1/2 (Don't get me wrong, I'm more of a Cat 2 than a Pro), and am getting back into racing shape. How is the racing scene in the Kanto area?


Yuhji
Hey, welcome! I live in Utsunomiya and cycle around Tochigi prefecture on most weekdays. Good to see some more people in the area!

1.) I'm not sure about a club up in Nasushiobara, but there should be a few around. Your best bet is to check out local bike shops as they usually have a group of people who organise group rides or whatnot.

2.) There is indeed a velodrome in Utsunomiya. It's mostly used for betting on keirin matches; I have no idea if they hold amateur events or stuff like that.

Hit me up when you're planning to do some cycling. I'm no Cat Racer, but I can do 100+km courses no problem. I plan to head up to Nasu to see the coloured leaves at some point in October so let me know if you're down for that; there's plenty of great climbs about! :)
 

Musashi13

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
1,772
1,104
143
41
Ichikawa, Chiba
#5
Went to Nasu at the weekend and it is good riding.

There were plenty of locals out and about.

The ride we did was created by Cyclistwelcome.jp and they have a page on Nasu

On the main road we passed a bike shop that looked good but can't remember the name and can't seem to find any info on it
 

kyoazu

Maximum Pace
Nov 5, 2014
69
36
48
27
#6
Went to Nasu at the weekend and it is good riding.

There were plenty of locals out and about.

The ride we did was created by Cyclistwelcome.jp and they have a page on Nasu

On the main road we passed a bike shop that looked good but can't remember the name and can't seem to find any info on it
I'm guessing the ride was the Rapha Prestige Nasu ride? Do you have any info on the course you rode?
 

Yuhji

Warming-Up
Aug 28, 2016
3
0
1
34
#8
Wow thank you for the responses and useful information.

4. How long is the riding season in Tochigi Prefecture ? I know it only snowed 3 or do times last Winter in Nasu Shiobara. But if it 5 Celsius and raining, that isn't so pleasant to ride in.

5. When do the mountain roads open/close? Mount Nasu will probably be my closest training spot. I remember that in April 2013 some touge were still closed. I assume they close around November? It probably depends on the mountain and local authorities too but anyone have a general idea?

Hope to see some of you soon. I will keep training outside in Canada until the snow comes...
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
2,864
1,450
129
...
#9
Under 1000m is usually rideable until into January around Kanto. But once it gets snowed in when it opens will depend on how much falls over winter.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
1,598
1,277
133
Niigata
#10
Utsunomiya Blitzen is the big team. They are currently leading the JBCF individual rider and team classification. Though I believe they have teams at various levels.

Utsunomiya also holds the Japan Cup in October. The course is in a park and was used for the Worlds RR 20 or so years ago.

I would imagine if you rode the course in the morning or at weekends you could meet lots of cyclists.

Andy

www.jyonnobitime.com/time
 
Likes: George5