Challenge race in Ajista!
Challenge Race in Ajista was held on Saturday 2 December ahead of the first edition of “THE ROAD RACE TOKYO TAMA 2023” on a special course at the Ajinomoto Stadium.
The event featured a “Cycle School” for inexperienced cyclists and beginners, a “Guided Short Race” where even beginners could enjoy the thrill of riding in a group, an “Exhibition Race” featuring elite riders, and an endurance race “80-minute Cycle Marathon” to enjoy with friends, attracting over 500 cyclists. More than 500 cyclists enjoyed a day of discovering road racing.
The school, for those who want to compete in races and events in the future and improve their riding skills, was run by coach Hayato Ando (Smart Coaching), who teaches a wide range of riders from beginners to professionals, as well as former riders such as Miyoko Karami (Athens Olympic Road Cycling Team) and Yusuke Hatanaka (Kinan Racing Team). Participants were guided by a team of experienced instructors, including former and current athletes such as Yusuke Hatanaka.
Each class included braking, slalom and group riding, with participants listening to each instructor’s advice and correcting their own riding.
Guided Short Race
In the Guided Short Race, where even novice road racers can experience group riding like a pro, a total of seven races were held in three heats for different classes, including inexperienced, novice and experienced riders, each lasting 20 minutes around the 950m circumference of the Ajinomoto Stadium perimeter road.
The races were led by support riders at a set pace according to the level of the participants, with the pace gradually increasing. The riders experienced riding in a group to maintain high speeds with reduced air resistance. In the final lap, participants competed against each other to experience the feeling of a road race.
On 3 December, an exhibition race was held on a special course (1.15 km x 12 laps) around the perimeter of Ajinomoto Stadium by 45 riders who had entered the elite men’s category of “THE ROAD RACE TOKYO TAMA 2023”.
In a race with a unique sense of speed for elite athletes, with high-speed group rides, attacks and tactics, Kohei Yokotsuka (VC FUKUOKA) broke away from the pack at the end and crossed the finish line ahead of the rest, captivating the eyes of the spectators at the venue.
80-minute cycle marathon
The last race of the day, the 80-minute cycle marathon, is a race in which teams of two to five runners take turns to complete as many laps as possible over an 80-minute period. In order to avoid a sprint to the finish, the same number of laps were run with the same ranking rule.
A special team consisting of Shinichi Takeda (newsreader), Gori (garage sale), Eri Tosaka (wrestling gold medallist at the Rio Olympics), Yui Hayakawa (BMX athlete) and Shoji Jo (former Japanese national footballer) took part in the concurrent stadium event and enjoyed the race together with the participants. They enjoyed the race together with the participants.