As I mentioned single speed riders love having fun and dressing up in costume, some more daring than others . Some of the people in costume were strippers ( men in T backs ) , Ronald MacDonald , Super Mario , Mummies , Zombies , school girls & construction workers just to name a few and they raced hard some of them in the pro class 20km course !. I entered the pro class and enjoyed the technical single tack and downhills as I had not ridden anything like that since back in NZ. The start of the race was rather unique with everybody riding around a big loop on the side of the hill and when the music stopped the race started, I keep near the back and slowly worked my way forward to a better position on the flater sections which allowed me to pass several riders with my higher gearing. Also this race had a beer short cut which allowed riders to escape riding up a long dead grass climb before zig zaging back down again, you could only do this once and I chose to do it on my last lap. With riders hot on my tail I out sprinted several riders on the flat gravel road leading to the finish line drank the 0% beer which tasted terrible and crossed the finish line with a time of about 2 hours. I had a free Red bull then attended the prize giving ceremony before getting a hamburger and a glass of Shiga Kogen IPA from a Kiwi mate called Troy who runs a backpackers and bar in Hakuba village . Many of the racers had come from as far away such as Kobe so they had a 6 hour drive back home , most racers took off as soon as the prize giving was finished and late afternoon I was informed that I too had to leave our free accommodation at the Ski Field and find somewhere else to stay . luckily my mate Troy offered to let me stay for free at their backpackers and I enjoyed a nice nabe for dinner and a nice warm room and a few beers after dinner.
Monday, 20 October 2014
Oct 5 day tour - part 4
Luckily race day was just a nice as the Sat and by early morning all the racers had arrived , most were either test riding the course or making last minute gear changes while several famous bicycle shops set up booths selling their products at heavily discounted prices. Even a huge truck arrived to set up a free Red Bull sports drink stand. It certainly became a busy race venue rather quickly and at 10.30am there was a race briefing and welcome ceremony which my name was mentioned along with famous racers because I was the only one crazy enough to have cycled 215km to attend.