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Track Cycling: Velodrome Racing and Training Area Looking to enter into the realm of track racing? Want to share your experiences and tactics for riding on a velodrome? The Track Cycling forums is for you! Come in and discuss training/racing, equipment, and current track cycling events.

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Old 04-28-04, 09:06 PM   #1
Fugazi Dave
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Getting into track racing in Japan

I'm really just wondering if it's remotely feasible to pull weekend track warrior duty in the Japanese track cycling world. I'm leaving for Tokyo in a year or two and will likely be there about 5 years, and I like the idea of getting into track cycling there. Should I even be entertaining this thought or should I just flush it and concentrate on other things?
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Old 04-30-04, 02:26 PM   #2
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I have no clue.

However, while surfing ebay for track bikes I found this in a description today FWIW:

In Japan They Gamble on Track cycling .. The Racers go to college for 2 years befroe they can race and there are over 50 velodromes hosting up to 400 races yearly. The racers can't leave the site for the 2 or 3 days of the series and the bigger races have million dollar(not yen) purses.
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Old 04-30-04, 07:52 PM   #3
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Hmmmm....that's what I was afraid of. Maybe I'll just stick to trying to win that running race that goes to the top of Mt Fuji...
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Old 05-01-04, 12:20 AM   #4
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There is a guy on ebay who sells Keirin racing posters etc. Look him up. Search "keirin." He may be of help. He sent me some explanation of that type of racing. But alas: it is in Japanese and I can't read it. Nevertheless, check him out. He may be able to point you in the right direction.
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Old 05-01-04, 01:09 PM   #5
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well, to be a professional keirin rider you do have to go to school for it. while i'm sure it not exclusively japanese, it is a full time job, more or less. as far as the amateur track racing scene, i'm not too sure. the only velodromes over there i've been able to get any info about at all have been the huge-ass keirin 'dromes, and i'm fairly sure they're the exclusive domain of the pros. having said all that, if where you're going in japan is near one of the keirin 'dromes, why not go hang out near the "racers gate" and try to strike up a conversation. how's your nihongo skills?

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Old 05-01-04, 01:11 PM   #6
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good place to start if they are lacking:
http://www.nihongo.org/english/
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Old 05-03-04, 10:47 PM   #7
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My Japanese skills are pretty basic at the moment, but I'm slowly getting back into studying again, and I'll be teaching English for a year or two before grad school, so I'll have plenty of time to force learn as much as I need to.
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Old 07-14-04, 05:00 AM   #8
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Ive been living in Japan for the past 3 years and becoming a Keirin racer is probably just the same as trying to become a Sumo wrestler, as in....IMPOSSIBLE. You have to be scouted and then you are recruited to a school where you do countless hours of training and riding. Ive heard these guys have to ride up really steep hills and then the real fun is riding down them at like 40-60mph! You ride rain or shine when you race Keirin and there are about 6-8 stretchers places near the edges of the track for the inevitable crash/pile-up. Japanese people tend to be very exclusive when it comes to their traditions and letting "foreigners" in. For example, once an American baseball player playing for a Japanese team here tied the Japanese all time HR record, but for the rest of the season they just walked him every single at bat because they didnt want a "foreigner" breaking "their" record. Thats Japan in a nutshell, dont get me wrong, its also the coolest place you'll see, you'll see things here that you'll never see anywhere else, but find out what "tatemae" means, and know that is the way of japan.
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Old 07-14-04, 05:03 AM   #9
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PS- if you really want to go to a great place to get into Track racing, go to Australia! the weather is incredible and they speak English there (sort of). Australia is maybe the 3rd best country in the world for track racing behind France and Germany.
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Old 02-10-05, 02:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MCMVIIX
For example, once an American baseball player playing for a Japanese team here tied the Japanese all time HR record, but for the rest of the season they just walked him every single at bat because they didnt want a "foreigner" breaking "their" record.
I hear Japanese baseball leagues are barely surviving, excpet a few teams. When they do things like you said, they deserve what they have. I used to think major league World Series is not a "world" series but now, all the good players come to play for the major league teams, it had truly become "World Series" and the leagues in other countries are becoming more and more like the farm of major leagues.
I like Ichiro. I think he's a phenomenal hitter even by the major league standard. I believe, some day he'll be the first Japanese born player to be inducted in the hall of fame. I'm glad he didn't waste time over there.

Edit: Sorry for the changing the subject.

From Japanese point of view, track racer(keirin racers) are not somebody they look up to nor anywhere near admired figure like other pro athletes, no matter how much they earn.

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Old 02-22-05, 02:15 AM   #11
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Its a big business, you'll get an invite if your a current World Champion as nothing brings out the crouds like a rainbow.

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Old 05-13-05, 03:16 AM   #12
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Everyone hear seems to know nihon pretty well. But go to the tracks, find some clubs, maybe some old timers. Nihonjins love a token gaijin friend so you may be able to get on a track, not for official keirin races though.

Ask umm Tomity, he is a keirin registered pro on the forum. He will prob help you out. Just use the search.

Su-pa- kanpai yo!

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Old 05-17-05, 10:00 PM   #13
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I dreamed about this again the other night. Still not sure about this or even when I'm getting to Japan for sure, but I still like the idea. If nothing else, I can still do my photo documentary project.
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Old 05-18-05, 01:00 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MCMVIIX
PS- if you really want to go to a great place to get into Track racing, go to Australia! the weather is incredible and they speak English there (sort of). Australia is maybe the 3rd best country in the world for track racing behind France and Germany.
3rd best? We can be higher than that can't we? We have better weather for all the outdoor tracks we have.
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Old 05-19-05, 05:55 AM   #15
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I dreamed about this again the other night. Still not sure about this or even when I'm getting to Japan for sure, but I still like the idea. If nothing else, I can still do my photo documentary project.

FD,

I just got here a couple of hours ago. I tried waiting but I had to come back. When you are ready let me know. Got a cold already and I just got here. Damn.

S/F,
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Old 05-20-05, 04:52 PM   #16
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Heh....I'm trying - things like the fact that I'm getting my tonsils out in September are complicating everything, but I will make it eventually.
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Old 05-20-05, 04:57 PM   #17
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If you are coming later in the year..Let me know by email or PM... I have to make some more trips..

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