Never Raced?

Jan 14, 2007
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japanichiban.com
#1
Some of you may be scared to race or think it is dangerous etc.
You are not wrong, however it can be fun, safe and a lot easier than your preconceived ideas.

There are many different levels and types of races. Hill climbs, long distance, short, flat, track, time trials, team time trials, etc...
Im no all rounder and I go in races that suit my style.

The JCRC ranks are easy to follow and first time riders should start at the bottom and see how fast or slow they really are. Coming last is not an embarrassment as there are 1000s of excuses you can come up with.

X class is for 1st timers. If you do extremely well they may put you in a higher grade but usually every body progresses to the next rank being
F.
If you finish top 6 in any race you usually can move up to the next rank.
E (very approx average speeds of 37kph)
D (38kph)
C (39kph)
B (40kph)
A (41kph)
S (43kph)
SS (45kph)
O class for over 50s (they can participate in the other ranks too)
G class for over 60s. (these guys who ride every day are very fast)
Women can go in any of the above ranks or they can stick to the W class for Women.
Z class is a bit of a all for one and one for all rank and I think it can be used for those coming back from injuries or find the rank they are in too hard.. still trying to figure out this rank myself... it smells a bit rank....

And dont be scared off by the speeds either as its easy to sit in a pocket behind a big fat guy like me and get pulled along. Drafting saves about 20% of your energy so let the guys at the front do all the owrk and see how you feel towards the end of the race before going near the front)

Then other associations use (past S class) which is approaching Pro level racing... I dont know for sure about these ranks...
BR2
BR1

Ive been aiming for C grade now for the last 2.5 years.... :warau:

What I like about racing is that if you have a race coming up you are forced to train and get out on the bike when you may be tempted to go to the pub or sit at home watching TV....
 

Ash

Warming-Up
Apr 23, 2006
686
1
0
shakujiidai, nerima ku, tokyo
#2
Some of you may be scared to race or think it is dangerous etc.
You are not wrong, however it can be fun, safe and a lot easier than your preconceived ideas.

There are many different levels and types of races. Hill climbs, long distance, short, flat, track, time trials, team time trials, etc...
Im no all rounder and I go in races that suit my style.

The JCRC ranks are easy to follow and first time riders should start at the bottom and see how fast or slow they really are. Coming last is not an embarrassment as there are 1000s of excuses you can come up with.

X class is for 1st timers. If you do extremely well they may put you in a higher grade but usually every body progresses to the next rank being
F.
If you finish top 6 in any race you usually can move up to the next rank.
E (very approx average speeds of 37kph)
D (38kph)
C (39kph)
B (40kph)
A (41kph)
S (43kph)
SS (45kph)
O class for over 50s (they can participate in the other ranks too)
G class for over 60s. (these guys who ride every day are very fast)
Women can go in any of the above ranks or they can stick to the W class for Women.
Z class is a bit of a all for one and one for all rank and I think it can be used for those coming back from injuries or find the rank they are in too hard.. still trying to figure out this rank myself... it smells a bit rank....

And dont be scared off by the speeds either as its easy to sit in a pocket behind a big fat guy like me and get pulled along. Drafting saves about 20% of your energy so let the guys at the front do all the owrk and see how you feel towards the end of the race before going near the front)

Then other associations use (past S class) which is approaching Pro level racing... I dont know for sure about these ranks...
BR2
BR1

Ive been aiming for C grade now for the last 2.5 years.... :warau:

What I like about racing is that if you have a race coming up you are forced to train and get out on the bike when you may be tempted to go to the pub or sit at home watching TV....
Very interesting post, thanks for that.!
 

evan06

Warming-Up
Jul 23, 2007
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Yokosuka
#3
Edogawakikkoman

I second that, great information. I would really like to get into racing, but never really had the opportunity. Kind of hard to enter and train for races when stuck on a ship out to sea all the time.

I would really like to hook up with some of the members to train for races. Unfortunately, I just found out my arrival date (Yokosuka) has been pushed back to August 2008. I am attending a 19 week school prior to my arrival.

James
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#4
Virgin Racer . . .

Very interesting. I have never entered a bicycle race - apart from non-drafting triathlon events. As my cycling has improved I have become more interested in doing so . . . especially after your (Edogawakikkoman) previous race report. You made it sound great fun :D Saiko Yamanashi sounds like my kind of race (unfortunately it clashes with an important marathon race I have entered).

What are the major 'century' rides of the year?

Cheers,

Philip
 
Jan 14, 2007
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Noda
japanichiban.com
#5
The only century race I have ever done is the Motegi Raceway January (usually 4th +-) Sometimes the course has snow on it and they use some kind of race car jet engines to go around the course blasting all the snow away.
The 1st time I did this race was my 3rd ever race and did it for training and finished in 3:15 minutes (riding mostly alone with little drafting). A year later I wanted to break this time and was on a faster bike with more miles on my legs but on the 2nd or 3rd lap my speed sensor hit the magnet and exploded and I couldn't pace myself or judge the distance and finished a lap early and then had to do the last lap again...was about 10 minutes slower than the year before. If you can sit in the main pack you'll get a time of about 2 hours 30 minutes. My heart rate blew up in the second race while sitting in the pack...

There is a gradual hill in this which really killed me... (21 laps, 21 climbs). I'd see people pass me and I'd catch them on the steep decent on the other side only to se them pass me again going up on the next lap. Really need to get my weight down...:warau:

I think I could improve my average a lot but it's just after Christmas and it's cold and it's harder then it should be. Would like to do a 100 in September...

There are a few other 100s but this is a good one...

In my 1st ever race I went to the course 3 or 4 times a week and rode a ton of training rides. It was only a 14km race and in the first straight I hit 46 and thought bruddy hell this is fast, but it's easy... 2 minutes later I got dropped on a slight hill with about half the pack. I then brought the whole pack back to the front group and was trying to recover... I soon got dropped again. I didn't finish last but was sad to see slower guys from my club pass me on the last lap and I had no energy to get even close to them...it takes a long time (for me) to figure out how to do it...
 

astroman

Speeding Up
Mar 19, 2007
264
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Shirokanedai, Tokyo
#6
What about TTs?

Hi Edogawakikkoman,

Like Phillip, I am also mainly into triathlons where you can't draft. Do you know of any TT races held near Tokyo, as I want to improve and make more use of my tri-bike? The bike is fast, too bad the motor is not! :eek:

I actually did my first stand alone bike race two weeks ago which was a hill climb out at Ome. Had a blast, so I too would like to do some more races.

Cheers,

Keren
 
Jan 14, 2007
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japanichiban.com
#7
Most of the TTs for road race carnivals are short warm up races first up in the morning before the main races start. I've done a few but they are very short usually. Less than 2kms in most cases as well as on the keirin tracks.

You're probablybetter off just doing more triathlons to do the longer rides solo.

Is it true that you can draft in some triathlons?
 
Jun 6, 2007
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fa
#8
>Edogawakikkoman: Is it true that you can draft in some triathlons?

International Triathlon Union professional events and the Olympic traithlon allow
drafting, but theses races are significantly shorter than the original Ironman distance.
Races of original 3.6k/180k/42.2k that carry the appellation "Ironman" can only
be organized by the World Triathlon Corporation, because they have trademarked
the term. Drafting in "Ironman" events and other races of other distance run by
the WTU is against the rules, although it apparently does commonly occur to
some degree.
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
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japanichiban.com
#10
SEO Festival as there are many first time racers...in all the different levels.

Last year in my D grade race there were about 8 beginners and we let them do all the work... in the last sprint they were quite shocked to see 5 of us just accelerate away and leave them huffing and puffing... was nice of them to race hard for the whole race while I just sat behind them...

The Saiko race is much more serious and it's a good idea to have ridden that course around the lake a bit before racing there...

I plan on going out to the SEO course near Narita in a few weeks and it's near a train station.... some of you interested should try the course out...

proxy.php?image=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.arttech.gr.jp%2Ftoubu%2Fsimousa%2Fphoto%2Ff-zenkei.jpg&hash=b0c8c8f43e43fe8a033f0f53370b267a
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#11
Thanks for the info on the SEO Festival, Edogawakikkoman. I'm not too far away from there... Just signed up for the beginner's race, though those speeds you posted are nearer my max than my average :eek:, so I'll be there for the scenery and experience more than anything else! Love the idea of riding on a dedicated cycling race course...
 
Jan 14, 2007
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#12
Thanks for the info on the SEO Festival, Edogawakikkoman. I'm not too far away from there... Just signed up for the beginner's race, though those speeds you posted are nearer my max than my average :eek:, so I'll be there for the scenery and experience more than anything else! Love the idea of riding on a dedicated cycling race course...

Great!

You'll find you can ride about 10 to 15% faster (over the distance) if you sit behind the big guys...don't worry....If you train at +30kph you should be able to race at 40.

To train for this track I suggest doing 1 minute : 2 minute intervals... 2 minutes fast and 1 minute very fast. Get your body and heart used to roughly 3 minute laps with a gradual down hill and a sudden uphill.
 

jam

Warming-Up
Sep 14, 2007
10
0
0
Ichikawa
#14
Me too, me too!

I wanna race! I'm not competitive, and not bothered by that fact.
(Well not too much.) And I have been in races, but always as part
of a company group where somebody else made the arrangements
and all I had to do was tag-along and push my pedals when they
said it was my turn.

The Tour de Chiba this past weekend was my first time in any event
where I was on my own.

It seems like the information I need is here. I have been reading
around the topics (and replying here & there) but somehow it just
isn't jelling for me. Maybe my jargon vocabulary is lacking? Or the
unfamiliar place names are throwing me off? What/where is Saiko?
What is the "SEO Festival"?

At my age it is not seemly to need hand-holding, but maybe I just
need one good pointer? (Or maybe to have my meds adjusted...?)

Hopefully it will all seem sooo simple once the light comes on.

- jam
 
Jan 14, 2007
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#15
What/where is Saiko?
Saiko is one of the 5 lakes that are popular tourist attractions down near Mt. Fuji.
Every 2nd Sunday in November they hold the Nakano Koichi memorial road race.
Nakano Koichi was and is a famous kerin rider who did well in the Olympics in the 70s. (Gold medal).
The races are for all levels. You need to stay the Saturday night down there as registration is on the Saturday and the races start as early as 7:30 a.m on the Sunday. Races go till about 3pm then it's a rae to beat the traffic jams back to Tokyo.
My favorite race of the year and I've done it 4 times.
1st time got dropped. 34th. :warau:
2nd time pipped on the post and came 3rd. (my glory race) :D
3rd time was unfit and abandoned at the halfway mark, :eek:
4th time unfit but finished in the sprint pack but only 29th. :mad:
5th time (I want to win).:cool:


What is the "SEO Festival"?
Seo festival started last year. (3rd Sunday in November).
Races are from all ages and levels.
The courses is a 1.5km slight descent for 1km then a 500m climb to the finish line. The races are from about 10km to 40km....less for kids.
It's on a small cycling track in Shimofusa near Narita.
Our cycling club is sponsored by the Seo cycling shop in Shin Matsudo.
All the shops invite as many riders as possible to participate in the Seo Festival and the prizes are the best of any race I've seen in Japan.
There is a thread in the bicycle races forum with a link to participate.
If you have probelms with registration I can do it for you at the shop in Shin Matsudo.
Last year was the first time and they would have learnt a lot form that so this year should be even better.
 

astroman

Speeding Up
Mar 19, 2007
264
0
36
Shirokanedai, Tokyo
#16
It's on a small cycling track in Shimofusa near Narita.
Can you also tell me how to get there? There does not appear to be a station called Shimofusa. Where is the closest train station? I don't have a car, so I am limited to going to places with easy access. But of course I can ride to the race from a station, if it is not too far. I am interested in having a go at this race if it is easy to get to.

Cheers,

Keren
 

jam

Warming-Up
Sep 14, 2007
10
0
0
Ichikawa
#17
"Shimofusa"? Is that the air base north of Funabashi and east of
Matsudo? That's almost in my stomping grounds. Rode over
there once just to see where the low-flying airplanes were coming
from on fine days. (They only seem to fly on really pretty days.
If North Korea decides to get uppity on a dingy day, we're done.)

I frequent a Seo cycle shop not far from Ichikawa Station. The
guy there mostly fixes mamachari flats but will order things for me
when I ask. If I'm in a hurry I ride out to Matsudo or over to
Lala Port. My Japanese isn't great and his English is non-existant
but we manage. I'll stop in and ask about Seo Festival on my
way home tonight.

And of course I'll troll through that thread in the races forum.

- jam
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#18
"Shimofusa"? Is that the air base north of Funabashi and east of
Matsudo? That's almost in my stomping grounds. Rode over
there once just to see where the low-flying airplanes were coming
from on fine days. (They only seem to fly on really pretty days.
If North Korea decides to get uppity on a dingy day, we're done.)

I frequent a Seo cycle shop not far from Ichikawa Station. The
guy there mostly fixes mamachari flats but will order things for me
when I ask. If I'm in a hurry I ride out to Matsudo or over to
Lala Port. My Japanese isn't great and his English is non-existant
but we manage. I'll stop in and ask about Seo Festival on my
way home tonight.

And of course I'll troll through that thread in the races forum.

- jam
That's a different shimofusa...the one where the races is...is on the (near) Tone River not far from Narita. From Abiko follow the river about 30km...
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
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japanichiban.com
#20
No, Abiko isn't the closest train station.... I'll find the train details some time today.... I used Abiko as a marker for the Tone river.... The Narita line (Narita->Abiko) (I think) runs past the race course and I think it's 4 stops from Narita.

According to this website...

http://www.narita-airport.jp/e-navi/pda/sight/shimofusa/shimofusa.html

JR Narita line to Namekawa Station....check your tain maps....