Yowapeda / Yowamushi Pedal


#1

Yowapeda / Yowamushi Pedal


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Watch on Crunchyroll

Genres: comedy, slice of life, tournament
Themes: bicycle competition, cycling, sport
Objectionable content: Mild
Number of episodes: 38
Vintage: 2013-10-07 to 2014-06-30

Plot Summary:Sakamichi Onada is a wimpy high school freshman who loves anime. He initially wants to enter the anime club, but winds up joining the cycling club after meeting two classmates who are already famous cyclists. He undertakes the grueling training to compete in races, and discovers his own hidden talent in cycling. (from ANN)

ANN Page

Official Japanese Website

Yowamushi Pedal Grande Road


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Watch on Crunchyroll

Genres: comedy, slice of life, tournament
Themes: cycling, sports
Number of episodes: 24
Vintage: 2014-10-06
Opening Theme: “Determination” by LASTGASP
Ending Theme: “Realize” by ROOKiEZ is PUNK’D

Plot Summary: Second season of Yowamushi Pedal series. (from ANN)

ANN Page

Official Japanese Website

Yowamushi Pedal New Generation

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Watch on Crunchyroll

Genres: tournament
Themes: cycling
Number of episodes: 25
Vintage: 2017-01-09
Opening Theme: “Cadence” by Takaaki Natsushiro
Ending Theme: “Now or Never” by Yusuke Saeki

Plot Summary: After defeating the formidable opponent Hakone Gakuen in the national tournament “Inter-High,” senior members of Sohoku High – Kinjo, Makishima, and Tadokoro – are about to retire, and the team reorganizes with first-year members (Onoda, Imaizumi, and Naruko) under the leadership of Teshima as team captain and Aoyagi as vice captain. Meanwhile, Hakone Gakuen is reorganizing and recruiting as well in order to retake the championship, while Kyoto Fushimi High is now led by “monster racer” Midousuji. (from ANN)

ANN Page

Official Japanese Website

Yowamushi Pedal Glory Line

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Vintage: 2018-01-08
Opening Theme: “Boku no Koe” (My Voice) by Rhythmic Toy World
Ending Theme: “Carry the Hope” by High Candence Rock

ANN Page

Official Japanese Website

Yowamushi Pedal Re:RIDE (movie) Vintage: 2014-09-19
Yowamushi Pedal Re: ROAD (movie) Vintage: 2015-06-12
Yowamushi Pedal (movie) Vintage: 2015-08-28
Yowamushi Pedal Re:Generation (movie) Vintage: 2017-10-13

Yowamushi Pedal Bicycling Manga Gets TV Anime in 2013

posted on 2012-12-24 08:30 EST
Wataru Watanabe’s manga about high school otaku who becomes a bicycle racer


#2

Episode 1 –

spoiler

An otaku and his bike! Sakamichi wants to revive the anime club, but I have a distinct feeling that he will soon be in the bike club instead. Loved his song! LOL

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#3

Episode 2 –

spoiler

With a very enticing incentive, Sakamichi is lured in to a bike race. But can a “mommy bike” win against a road racer? The race is almost over before it begins, but Sakamichi gets an ego boost from Kanzaki and finds his determination to win. A fifteen minute head start is all he gets from Imaizumi, but I’m sure it’s more than enough if the last episode is any indication.

Even Sakamichi is surprised at how fast he is – he’s never timed himself before. But Imaizumi is faster yet. Sakamichi needs to start singing! LOL It looks like he’s thinking too much about the race and getting overly tense. But by the time Sakamichi calms down, Imaizumi is flying past him.

Kanzaki and the Imaizumi fans catch up by van to find that a stunned Sakamichi has stopped in the middle of the road. Kanzaki educates him a bit and raises his seat before sending him off after Imaizumi. It works and Sakamichi is racing up the slope once again. But does he still have any chance whatsoever of winning at this point?


#4

Episode 3 –

spoiler

Amazingly, Sakamichi does catch up to Imaizumi! He’s confident that he will soon be gaining a member for his anime club. But every time Sakamichi gets next to Imaizumi, Imaizumi pulls ahead. Imaizumi can see that Sakamichi is at his limit and tells him to give up before speeding ahead. However, Sakamichi keeps his steady pace and is soon speeding up to catch Imaizumi. And Sakamichi says that he’s having fun!

Imaizumi comes to the conclusion that Sakamichi isn’t normal. How can he possibly be keeping up with a racing bike? The race is neck and neck, but Imaizumi gives his all and speeds up. Sakamichi is feeling the burn, but still wants to win. Sakamichi is right behind Imaizumi and is slowly inching up to him. Imaizumi speeds up again, but his tire gets caught in the drain cover. However, he recovers quickly and is still in the lead, but Sakamichi has caught up! They are neck and neck again!

It could have been anyone’s race, but in the end Imaizumi wins. And did either of them know that the bike club was watching the race? So, Sakamichi is back to having no one for his anime club and no friends. At school, Imaizumi invites Sakamichi to join the bike club. Sakamichi is happy, but he still doesn’t like athletic clubs. Besides, he still has hopes for the anime club. Imaizumi won’t force him though and tells Sakamichi to “follow his own path”.

Imaizumi also tells Sakamichi that he’s been passing the word about the anime club to see if anyone wants to join. Sakamichi is glowing! I think Sakamichi may have found his first friend, although Imaizumi might not see it that way. Another bike trip to Akiba has Sakamichi thinking of how much fun he had racing Imaizumi. But there are more important things to think of at the moment and he starts singing the “Love Hime” theme song again. That is what his race truly needed! LOL I cracked up when he later gives Imaizumi the CD!


#5

Episode 4 –

spoiler

That kid from Osaka has some personality! After dragging Sakamichi all over Akiba, without knowing him, and borrowing money from him, he admires Sakamichi’s mommy bike. When a flashy car passes, he admires that as well, but when the driver tosses a cigarette at Sakamichi’s bike, Naruko takes offense. The car drives off, but that just puts Naruko in a mood and he wanders off.

Poor Sakamichi almost thought he had a friend. Not wanting to lose him, Sakamichi approaches him again and asks if they can bike home together. Naruko agrees, but isn’t sure where he lives exactly, which is pretty funny. Well, he did just move to Chiba, but still. LOL On the way they see that flashy car again and Naruko wants to chase it down to get the driver to apologize for throwing his cigarette at Sakamichi’s bike. Naruko even kept the butt so he could return it to the man!

Now, the fun begins and the race is on! Naruko leads the way and makes Sakamichi put on a helmet before taking him out into the street. At first Sakamichi is afraid of the traffic, but he soon gets the hang of things. And Naruko is soon amazed that Sakamichi passed him! Naruko is back in the lead again, but Sakamichi can’t go any faster. They may lose the car! What to do?

Kanzaki had put something a little special on Sakamichi’s bike the last time it was in her shop. Naruko sees what it is and has Sakamichi switch gears – after he explains how. Sakamichi can feel an immediate difference and speeds up. Sakamichi is elated! The boys even catch up to the car – almost. On a bridge, Naruko warns Sakamichi that they are about to hit a “wall”. Sakamichi has no idea what Naruko is talking about until the wind hits him. Pedaling against the wind, Sakamichi loses all of his speed and realizes that it does feel like a wall.

Naruko has him change back to his original gear and stay behind him as Naruko cuts a path through the wind. Once again, Sakamichi has no idea what Naruko is talking about, but trusts him enough to follow Naruko’s instructions. Suddenly, things are a lot easier! On cue, Sakamichi pulls ahead, grabs the butt from Naruko, and passes the car! LOL Sakamichi is so thrilled, he forgot to toss back the cigarette butt! Naruko is still very impressed with Sakamichi and wonders what he could do with an actual road racer.

When they part ways, Naruko tells Sakamichi that he had fun. He even gives Sakamichi a piece of candy for the money he borrowed. Sakamichi is happy to have a friend, but he isn’t too happy to have lost his money! He wanted to buy the “Love Hime” soundtrack with that money! LOL


#6

Episode 5 –

spoiler

Back at school, Sakamichi thinks of how much fun he had with Naruko. But he’s hungry! I think he burned up too many calories. LOL There is a mad crowd at the lunch counter and every time Sakamichi gets close, someone grabs his target first. He soon sees that it’s none other than Naruko!

Naruko came to this school for the bike racing club. He intends to join and talks about racing. He’s so enthusiastic about a recent race he was in that Sakamichi gets caught up in the excitement. Naruko thinks that Sakamichi would be good at cycling and invites him to watch the club race after school.

Once again, Sakamichi gets excited by the race. It sounds like Naruko is trying to get him to join the club. Will he be successful? On the way home, Sakamichi gets a flat and panics. Luckily, Toji from the bike shop is passing by and stops to lend a hand. Of course, Sakamichi looks around for Miki and Toji tells him that she’s still with the club. Sakamichi mentions how he just saw them race. And Sakamichi is stunned to find out that Toji used to be the captain of the team! Toji even gives Sakamichi a book on racing.

At school, Naruko catches Sakamichi reading the book. Well, Sakamichi was trying to read it, but there is too much he doesn’t understand. Naruko tells him that he’ll be joining the club today. He wants Sakamichi to join with him. I think Sakamichi is finally giving up on the anime club. He says yes to Naruko! He’s going to join the bike club!

They walk into the club room and right into a “first-year student welcoming race”. It a sixty kilometer course and it looks pretty tough. Sakamichi is excited! He’ll be riding with Naruko and Imaizumi. And those two have become instant rivals with one another. They start their own race immediately – on the rollers. LOL The club intends to pick two of the newbies for the Inter-High preliminaries, but the new members don’t know that yet. The current members think it will be Imaizumi and Naruko, but I think Sakamichi is going to worm his way in as well.

It’s time to warm up and Sakamichi only has his mommy bike. But he can’t use a mommy bike on the rollers. Or can he? He says he’ll be fine – that he’s used to falling – and puts his bike up on the rollers. He gets on and starts pedaling and he’s fine! This surprises everyone. But why should it? This is Sakamichi! LOL I can’t wait to see what he does on a racer. But I’m sure that will come much later. His mommy bike seems to be his lucky charm. At the end, we get to see Imaizumi watching “Love Hime”, but he just doesn’t get it. LOL At least he’s trying!


#7

Episode 6 –

spoiler

It looks like Sakamichi was going to get a racing bike, but Toji hasn’t arrived with it, and the race is about to start. A van will be following and picking up the slow cyclists that are too tired to go on. And they’re off!

Of course, Imaizumi and Naruko start in the lead and keep up a steady pace. Kawada speeds up and passes Imaizumi, although he was told not to for this first part of the race. Sakurai makes a fuss about the slow pace and wants to catch up to Kawada, but Imaizumi knows what he’s doing. This is a flat stretch and you don’t want to waste all your energy here. But Sakurai accuses him of keeping the pace slow because Sakamichi is on a mommy bike. So, Imaizumi has to explain what he is doing.

This part is just to warm them up and once they are out of town, the real race will begin. Sakamichi is extremely nervous and Naruko falls back to give him a pep talk that helps a bit. Toji finally arrives at the school and it looks like his van is also the recovery van. Meanwhile, the racers are speeding up a bit as they approach the edge of town. Now the true race begins!

Imaizumi and Naruko take off and Naruko accelerates out of sight. Imaizumi soon joins him, leaving the remaining three first years far behind. Imaizumi catches up to Naruko and cautions him not to wear himself out, but Naruko isn’t worried. Finally thrilled to be racing with his friends, Sakamichi shifts gears and speeds up, but the other two first years quickly pass him. Sakamichi finally realizes that his bike is outclassed and it hits him pretty hard. His two gears just can’t compete.

As Naruko and Imaizumi keep pace, they talk about Sakamichi and wonder if he will be able to catch up. Naruko highly doubts it – at least not on a mommy bike. Naruko says that “he’s playing the game without the right equipment”. Poor Sakamichi! Even with pedaling as hard as he can, the other two are way ahead of him. He screams out his frustration as he pedals even harder. He is going to tire himself out too quickly like this!

The chain on Sakamichi bike unhitches and he falls. He tells himself that he isn’t out of the race yet as he tries to fix it. It isn’t working and he begins to cry. He hears a car horn and panics when he sees the recovery van pull up behind him. Sakamichi gets on his bike and tries to get away from the van that is traveling right behind him, with Kinjou repeatedly calling out for him to stop. I’m hoping that they just want Sakamichi to switch bikes and not take him out of the race.

The bike chain has clicked back into place, but now something else breaks now and Sakamichi falls again, even as he screams out that he can still race. The van stops, and Sakamichi balls up his fist and closes his eyes in anger and in frustration as he lies on the ground. He hears Miki’s voice apologizing for keeping him waiting, and opens his eyes to see her presenting him with a road racer!

Kinjou explains a little about the bike to the amazed Sakamichi and tells him that he isn’t out of the race yet. With a look of determination, Sakamichi gets on the bike. Kinjou gives him five minutes to get back in the race or he’s out. Sakamichi sits with his head on the handlebars, and Miki tries to give him a helmet and gloves. But Sakamichi is psyching himself up and doesn’t even hear her.

Sakamichi puts on the glove and helmet, saying that this bike has given him hope. He is determined to catch up with everyone and race with them. Exactly at the five minute mark, Sakamichi pulls away. As he pedals away, the others are amazed that he can actually handle a road racer just like that. But Miki provides some insight, and her brother mentions that the kid even forgot his water bottle. LOL

Miki has faith in Sakamichi and I do too. Sakamichi is getting used to the bike as he rides. It feels so completely different to him. He realizes now what speed really is and is overjoyed to be able to race with his friends like this. But now he has to face a mountain and everyone else is so far ahead of him. I know he has the strength and resolve to pull this off. I’m glad he has a chance at winning now!

After the credits, Sakamichi asks Imaizumi if he watched the “Love Hime” DVD. Embarrassed, Imaizumi says he saw a little and Sakamichi gets all excited. He asks Imaizumi how he liked it and he says that the song is good which gets Sakamichi all excited again. Imaizumi says some other nice things about the show and Sakamichi says that he knew that he’d like it. Sakamichi compares Imaizumi to one of the characters in the show and makes Imaizumi that much more uncomfortable. Sakamichi says that he’ll lend him the second DVD and Imaizumi makes a face. LOL It was also funny to see two girls watching the exchange. They must think now that the very cool Imaizumi is really a closet otaku! LOL


#8

Episode 7 –

spoiler

Now armed with the proper equipment, Sakamichi races to catch up to the others. But now he has a mountain to climb – literally! He keeps a steady pace, still getting used to the new bike, but he’s not letting up even a little bit on the sloping mountain road. And the van is following right behind!

Sakamichi soon passes Sakurai and then Sugimoto as well. Sakamichi is having fun! He’s happily surprised at the speed of the new bike and isn’t getting tired at all. However, he’s taking the turns a little dangerously, and the guys in the van can see his pedals hit the ground as he leans into each turn. They’re worried that he will fall, but he doesn’t!

To everyone’s amazement, Sakamichi passes Kawada next. But no one, except Miki of course, thinks that he will be able to catch up to Imaizumi and Naruko. Kinjou has the van pull up next to Sakamichi, so he can give him his water bottle. Kinjou also tells Sakamichi that he will never catch up to the leads, and Miki thinks that just killed Sakamichi’s motivation. Kinjou tells Sakamichi that he has no stamina. He also says that for a first time racer, making third place is an amazing achievement.

Yes, it’s impressive, but I’m not sure that is what Sakamichi wants. He just wanted to be able to race with his friends. But Kinjou is now telling him to choose – keep his pace and take third place, or continue trying to catch up to a point where he will be forced to drop out. Naturally, Sakamichi hardly thinks about it as he chooses to catch up to his friends. Kinjou tells Sakamichi to increase his cadence by 30 rpm’s, which shocks everyone else in the van. He really wants Sakamichi to lose his stamina! Or is it really a test? Sakamichi speeds up and the van keeps pace with him.

Meanwhile, Imaizumi and Naruko are having a contest of their own, testing each other’s limits and capabilities. Both boys are determined to win first place. However, an incident with a spectator may give Sakamichi the extra time he needs to catch up to them. Turns out the man isn’t really just a spectator, but was sent out by Kinjou, and now they wonder if this man is their coach, as he points out their weaknesses. The man tells them to get back to the race, because there is a boy catching up to them from behind. A few more choice words from the man, and the boys jump back on their bikes and take off! Sakamichi is coming, guys – just you wait!


#9

Episode 8 –

spoiler

Sakamichi did it! He caught up to Imaizumi and Naruko! He’s just so happy that they can ride together now. Everyone is amazed that Sakamichi caught up. But the race isn’t over yet. They still have to get up this mountain. Naruko pulls ahead, but Imaizumi can’t let him get too far in front and speeds up. Sakamichi has no idea what he’s doing and falls a little behind. It is his sheer determination that allows him to keep up with his friends.

There are a few in the van that still think Sakamichi will have to drop out. He can’t keep this pace up forever. But I think that mommy bike trained him well and he’s going to surprise the doubters. Besides, Sakamichi is just basking in the sheer joy of racing with his friends. Naruko begins to struggle with his climbing method and Sakamichi passes him. He slows down to keep pace with Naruko and asks him if he’s okay, but Naruko scolds Sakamichi and tells him to keep going.

After some words of encouragement, Naruko urges Sakamichi to stay ahead and pass Imaizumi. Sakamichi goes on ahead and I think the coach is starting to lean towards Sakamichi’s side, while Kinjou still favors Imaizumi. Imaizumi can feel Sakamichi approaching, but thinks that his stamina must be waning by now. But Imaizumi will not let Sakamichi pass him, no matter what. The watchers in the van think Imaizumi might just burn out if he keeps up that brutal pace.

Imaizumi speeds up again and Sakamichi falls further behind. Sheer willpower kicks in again and Sakamichi catches up to Imaizumi! Neck and neck, they are almost at the top of the mountain! Even Imaizumi is excited at this point. I can’t wait to see who takes the peak first!


#10

Episode 9 –

spoiler

Sakamichi and Imaizumi are still neck and neck. Even so, Imaizumi is pleased with Sakamichi’s progress. But Imaizumi tells Sakamichi that he is going to win and speeds up again. However, Sakamichi is happy because Naruko told him this would happen, and gave him one more trick to help him beat Imaizumi. Now, Sakamichi speeds up again. Everyone is surprised and Imaizumi thinks Sakamichi is amazing. Well, of course he is! LOL

Sakamichi pulls ahead of Imaizumi, but Imaizumi quickly catches up, and bumps into Sakamichi. He wavers for a moment, but Sakamichi retains his balance and speeds up again. Both are riding at their full power now. Each boy is concentrating on taking that peak! Sakamichi is singing his favorite song in his mind and going over all the events up until now. He’s feeling the strain, but finds the resolve to speed up again. With a yell of “Princess!”, Sakamichi reaches the peak first! Oh, my thundering heart! LOL

Once again, all the watchers in the van are in shock, although a few had faith that Sakamichi could do it. Now the two boys can slow down to take a quick rest, as they catch their breath. The boys in the van are happy and cheering. They don’t know how Sakamichi did it, but Miki says that it was the “power of his feelings”. But this race has yet to be finished, so Imaizumi speeds up and passes the exhausted Sakamichi.

Sakamichi sees this, but his vision is fading. He tries to keep going, but he only reaches the side of the road before he collapses and falls off his bike. The van pulls up, and Miki and Tadokoro reach him first. Breathing heavily, Sakamichi asks if he beat Imaizumi to the peak. Miki takes his hand and says that he did. Sakamichi says “good” and it looks like he’s about to give up. But Tadokoro tells him to get back on his bike. He tries to encourage Sakamichi, while the others protest. Tadokoro tells them that Sakamichi took the peak, but it won’t count if he can’t cross the finish line. How awful!

Kinjou comes up to them and helps Sakamichi to stand. He tells him that he’s finished and can rest now. It looks like Sakamichi really doesn’t want to hear that, but he reluctantly agrees anyway. Sakamichi tries to walk and falls down, apologizing. Once he realizes that he fell the first time, he is more concerned about the bike than himself. He can’t walk to it, so he crawls over on his hands and his knees.

By this time, Naruko has caught up. He gives Sakamichi a high five and keeps going, telling Sakamichi to leave the rest to him. The coach brings Sakamichi a change of clothes, but Sakamichi doesn’t know who he is and once he does, Sakamichi gets all flustered. The coach calms him down, and as Sakamichi changes his shirt, the coach asks him if he enjoyed the race. He tells Sakamichi that he did well, and what he just accomplished finally hits Sakamichi. Sakamichi says it was hard but he had fun!

The others are amused to see that Sakamichi is wearing a “King of the Mountains” jersey and probably doesn’t even know what it means. Toji honks the horn of the van and reminds everyone that the race isn’t over yet. The race is now between Imaizumi and Naruko. They collide, but keep going. Sakamichi really wants to ride with them, and Kinjou tells him to practice and become stronger. Sakamichi looks very determined as he watches his friends.

Now, Imaizumi and Naruko are neck and neck, as the goal lies within reach. Both are using every last bit of strength they have to win. And it’s Imaizumi that crosses the finish line first! By the time the van stops, both boys are on the ground, exhausted. A few run up to help, but Sakamichi is frozen in place, watching. He feels that the race was truly amazing, but he can’t think of a thing to say to his friends. He had thought he had been racing all this time at full power, but realizes now that he wasn’t. Makishima slaps him on the shoulder. He knows exactly what Sakamichi is thinking and tells him that he understands. Makishima encourages him and Sakamichi gets determined to be just as good as his friends.


#11

Episode 10 –

spoiler

The next day, Sakamichi is back at school and is really feeling the painful results of the race in his muscles. Miki tells him that’s it’s to be expected. She praises his accomplishment as well. Still, Sakamichi is sad that he wasn’t able to finish. And Sugimoto comes along to rub it in. But Sakamichi can still walk away with the confidence he just got from Miki.

Imaizumi reports to Kinjou that one of the first years is returning to tennis, but the rest will stay in the club. Imaizumi is made manager of the first years – it’s tradition. Naruko wants revenge against Imaizumi and intensifies his training. Sakamichi is determined to catch up to both of them. Funny that he meets both Naruko and Imaizumi during his morning practice. Each of them did the same routine, and neither wants the other to know that they are training in secret. LOL

When the club meets later that day, each member will ride with an upperclassman. This practice race will determine strengths and weaknesses. Sakamichi gets paired with the scary Makishima. Makishima did try to relax him a bit before they began, but Sakamichi is just too nervous. Makishima tries to make small talk as they ride, but that doesn’t seem to calm Sakamichi either. Then Sakamichi finds out that Makishima is in to gravure. Dead silence after that! LOL

They reach the rear back gate slope and their race can finally begin. But when Makishima looks back to check on Sakamichi, he’s way behind. Makishima tells Sakamichi to pass him, but finally realizes that the kid is terrified of him. He asks Sakamichi what he likes, but realizes that he can’t make conversation either. Makishima tells Sakamichi that he can only communicate through cycling and offers him a challenge, before riding off.

Makishima’s climbing abilities are amazing, but his riding is all over the place. Sakamichi is mesmerized by his type of dancing, and can see how fast he is too. Sakamichi thinks it’s amazing and begins to get excited. He begins to speed up, but each time he reaches Makishima, he pulls ahead. Although it’s undeveloped, Makishima can see Sakamichi’s skill. Sakamichi tries to imitate Makishima’s dancing and falls right over! LOL Sakamichi tries it again and falls again. And again. Makishima tells him that it’s his personal style and can’t be copied. He reminds Sakamichi that they are in a race.

But Sakamichi couldn’t help himself and tells Makishima that his dancing is really “cool”. Makishima isn’t sure how to take that since anybody else would think it scary or gross. But I think he was secretly pleased by the compliment. Still, he tells Sakamichi to use his own style and not to copy his. He keeps encouraging him and tells him that he already began to develop his own style during the welcoming race. Makishima tells him to keep doing that. They try it again and Makishima isn’t too happy to realize that he’s having fun. LOL And the Inter-High preliminaries will be soon. I wonder if Sakamichi will get to participate.


#13

Episode 11 –

spoiler

Naruko finishes his race and asks for another one. And then a third! They ended up doing ten laps in total. But Naruko only won twice. The next day is the Inter-High preliminaries, and Imaizumi, Naruko, and Sakamichi cut out of school to go watch. They even ride their bikes the thirty kilometers to Makuhari, although Sakamichi only has his mommy bike. But they still make it in time!

It’s Sakamichi’s first real race and he’s fascinated. He learns a few things as well. The boys cheer their seniors on. Sohoku wins! And the first years get to see how strong their team really is. It kind of depresses them as well. LOL But now they are determined to beat their seniors before they graduate.

Kinjou is a little annoyed that the first years showed up. He intends to put them in the Inter-High, but the scouts at this race didn’t need to know that. With just two months to the Inter-High, the first years need to become stronger. Kinjou proposes an overnight trip. From getting a glimpse of their rivals, it looks like the Inter-High is going to be pretty intense.


#14

Episode 12 –

spoiler

Sakamichi is surprised to find out that they are going all the way to a cycling sports center in Izu to train. He’s never been further than Akiba! Time to see the world Sakamichi! LOL But I think he just found out that he’s prone to carsickness.

However, Kinjou has a schedule to keep and they leave Sakamichi on the side of the road for Toji to pick up later. Nice way to treat a teammate. Worse is that the team bus left with all his stuff, including his wallet, and he can’t even buy a much needed bottle of water. Thankfully, another cyclist stops to give him a drink.

Sakamichi is amazed when the other guy figures out that Sakamichi is also a cyclist by the way he drinks his water. It amuses the boy when Sakamichi asks if he’s a detective. He does find out that the boy is from a rival school and that he’s also a climber. The guy talks a little more and tells Sakamichi his name before he leaves.

Sakamichi finally arrives at the cycling center to find out that he’s sharing a room with Imaizumi and Naruko. Naruko is not happy to have to share a room with Imaizumi. LOL I don’t think Imaizumi is too pleased either. Sugimoto is their other roommate and he’s brought Tour de France DVD’s! And Sakamichi brought Love Hime to watch. But they most likely won’t have time for watching anything.

The four boys walk some of the track, while Imaizumi explains it, and everyone receives their training schedules. Kinjou passes out lights as he explains that there is only one thing on the schedule. They have to complete one thousand kilometers in four days! And poor Sakamichi thought the expected 100 kilometers per day was going to be brutal. Instead it’s going to be 250 kilometers per day! They are going to be monitored too, so no cheating!

Imaizumi and Naruko get a “special” training schedule from Kinjou. Naruko’s bike is given straight handlebars, without the curve, and Imaizumi’s gear shifters were taken away. These modifications are supposed to make them stronger, but it’s going to be a lot harder to complete 1000 kilometers this way. Kinjou did something to Sakamichi’s bike too, but didn’t tell him.

Sakamichi isn’t having fun on the slopes and can’t figure out why. He can’t climb and that is exactly what Kinjou did to his bike. But it’s all for a reason. These new guys have to learn how to conserve energy and pace themselves. They will need to listen to their bodies and know their limits. And this will make them stronger cyclists. However, what Kinjou is doing to them now is nothing compared to what they will have to face at the Inter-High - if they get chosen to be on the race team. And whoever doesn’t complete the 1000 kilometers at this camp is out!

The boys finally complete one lap, but it was vicious. Sakamichi finally makes it to five laps and has to stop. Makishima comes up behind Sakamichi and tries to give him a hint about his modified bike. Sakamichi doesn’t understand, but Kinjou will not allow Makishima to say anything more. Makishima really wants to help Sakamichi, so he “talks” to himself and says that Sakamichi’s bike has also been modified. Kinjou gave Sakamichi much heavier wheels!

Now that Sakamichi understands his problem, he needs to find a way to overcome it. Makishima has finished talking to himself and leaves Sakamichi with a final piece of advice. Sakamichi takes it and shifts down two gears. He will go slower, but his pedaling just got a lot easier. He’s got the confidence now to finish this training camp.

Kinjou pulls up next to Makishima. He’s noticed Sakamichi’s improved riding and wants to know if Makishima said anything to him. Makishima tells him “not really” and Kinjou says that he wants Sakamichi to figure out situations for himself, and Makishima is not to help him. Makishima just agrees that Sakamichi is terrible at analyzing things, but he also tells Kinjou that “some people can’t move forward without a push”. Kinjou pulls ahead and Makishima knows that Kinjou knows that Makishima will talk, especially if he’s told not to, so all of this was probably Kinjou’s plan anyway.

That night, Kinjou goes over the distances covered. He did the required 250 kilometers, Makishima did 245, and Tadokoro did 280 – way to go Tadokoro! The second years didn’t do too badly, but Naruko and Imaizumi did 200 each and finished at the same time too. I bet they loved that! Sugimoto also did 200, but finished ten minutes faster than Naruko and Imaizumi. Then again, his bike wasn’t modified. And poor Sakamichi only did 165. Not good, but it’s much more than Kinjou expected. Thank you Makishima! LOL


#15

Episode 13 –

spoiler

I know the guys need plenty of fuel for cycling, but I still had to feel bad for Sakamichi when Tadokoro shared his “special” sandwich with him. Gross! LOL

Well, the second day of the thousand kilometers has started, and Imaizumi and Naruko continue to be rivals, each one hoping to improve on his distance. Sakamichi isn’t doing too badly either, now that he’s getting used to the modified bike.

Imaizumi and Naruko are still evenly matched, but even in the intense heat, they aren’t taking breaks as they were told to do. When Imaizumi stops to retrieve his water bottle, he finally feels what riding without stopping does to a body. Naruko is nice enough to stop as well, but Imaizumi was a little embarrassed to have Naruko see his weakness. Naruko was being nice, but Imaizumi kind of threw it back in his face, which was a little rude.

Imaizumi has always been a loner, but he needs to realize that he’s part of a team now. Still, he refuses to rely on anyone else and is determined not to lose this race, not even to Kinjou. Naruko laughs and tosses the water bottle away, telling Imaizumi to get it himself. That attitude works better with Imaizumi and they both get back on their bike and continue. But they are still evenly paced! LOL

Even at night, the three continue their laps, with Sakamichi getting strength from Imaizumi’s and Naruko’s determination. But it was funny to see the exhausted Naruko fall asleep in the bath later on. LOL And it took a while for Imaizumi and Naruko to see that Sakamichi fell asleep and slipped under the water as well. Afterwards, I like how Kinjou tested Naruko’s resolve. I’m glad Naruko gave him the right answer too.

It was nice to see a couple of the other teams that the guys will be facing in the Inter-High. A few of the others are a little off the wall to say the least. It’s going to be a very interesting competition! I liked the new opening and ending too, but I miss Sakamichi with his mommy bike. LOL


#16

Episode 14 –

spoiler

With two days left of the training camp, Sakamichi has only completed 390 kilometers of the thousand that he needs. He wakes up extra early to try and make the best of the time he has left, but Kinjou is already up and watching his progress. Sakamichi is getting a bit faster as well.

On one of his laps, Sakamichi meets Manami, the boy that had helped him out when he was sick on the side of the road. He tells Sakamichi that he was sent to scout out the Sohoku team, and Sakamichi finds out that Manami is on the rival Hakone team. Since both boys like to climb, they have an impromptu race to the top of the hill.

Even with the heavier wheels, Sakamichi manages to keep up with Manami, more because he’s having fun than anything else. Manami takes the opportunity to analyze the way Sakamichi rides and notices his wheel problem, but he also sees that Sakamichi’s strength lies in his cadence. The other thing that Manami sees is that Sakamichi is smiling and having fun. He also notes that Sakamichi isn’t wearing racing shoes.

Of course, Manami wins the race. He thinks Sakamichi would have done better if he hadn’t been wearing ordinary sneakers. And when he looks at Sakamichi’s bike, he does see that it has heavier wheels. Manami realizes just how amazing Sakamichi really is. Sakamichi thinks he doesn’t have a chance to join the Inter-High, but Manami knows better and tells the surprised Sakamichi that he will see him there.

But it’s funny later on when Manami reports back to Toudou about the “interesting” climber. Neither boy realizes that they are talking about different climbers! LOL Meanwhile, Sakamichi wonders if he can really make it to the Inter-High, and keep his promise to Manami.


#17

Episode 15 –

spoiler

Now, Sakamichi really wants to be in the Inter-High! He’s going to complete this thousand kilometers if it kills him! Imaizumi and Naruko also have their reasons for wanting to be in the Inter-High. Kinjou changes the order board to laps completed and poor Sakamichi is still in last place. It’s disheartening, but remembering what Kinjou had told him, Sakamichi still has his determination.

The second years have perfected their teamwork and are confident that they will be going to the Inter-High. However, Imaizumi and Naruko are catching up to them in laps. But the second years are not going to let the first years pass them! The first years are frustrated by their strategy, but I think a little teamwork here will let the first years pass the second years – if Imaizumi and Naruko can overcome their rivalry. Naruko does finally pass Teshima, but it doesn’t last long. These two second year guys are vicious!


#18

Episode 16 –

spoiler

How will the guys deal with these second years? They need a way to get past them. And Aoyagi is so far ahead! Teshima has never beaten Imaizumi up until now, but I wonder if he really can.

Imaizumi and Naruko are tired. Sakamichi knows that he has to do something, but what? He tries to come up with a plan, but can’t think of anything. And now the course is against them as well. Night has fallen and there is a ban on passing at night. It’s too dark and dangerous. The guys only have half a lap until the ban goes into effect.

Sakamichi wants both Imaizumi and Naruko to go to the Inter-High. He needs to think of something fast. He tries to inspire his friends, but they tell him to stop thinking and to use his cadence. The guys will use Sakamichi to break through Teshima’s wall. However, Teshima expected this and is ready.

Teshima reaches the peak and thinks he’s safe, but there is Sakamichi, passing him! He flies way ahead of Teshima. Teshima did his research well on his opponents, but he did not account for Sakamichi getting stronger in the last couple of days. Well, what is a training camp for? Of course Sakamichi has gotten stronger with those heavy wheels. Imaizumi and Naruko are very proud of their friend. And the bit after the credits was very funny. Sakamichi may just turn Imaizumi into an otaku yet! LOL


#19

Episode 17 –

spoiler

Imaizumi and Naruko pass Teshima as well, but Teshima isn’t giving up. However, his body does. That’s when he realizes just how strong the first years are. Sakamichi did what he set out to do, but his body gives out as well. Luckily, Imaizumi and Naruko catch up in time to prevent him from falling over. But all of them are too tired to finish the thousand kilometers.

Aoyagi comes around again and meets up with his partner. He encourages Teshima and tells him that their fight to get to the Inter-High isn’t over yet. Imaizumi notices the second years catching up to them and tells his friends to give it everything they have in order to reach the finish line first.

The seniors are at the finish line, waiting to see who will win this battle. Tadokoro is certain his second years will win. I’m not so sure. Over the peak and now, it’s downhill all the way! It’s scary going so fast in the dark, but they are already halfway to the finish. And the second years are still chasing them.

Sakamichi hits a bump, but recovers. However, it was enough of a slowdown that the second years catch up – and pass him! Naruko is ready to go back for him, but Imaizumi cautions him against it. That upsets Naruko and he argues with Imaizumi. Regardless, Imaizumi says that Sakamichi must use his own strength now and I can see his point. And he also knows that one of Sakamichi’s strengths is being in last place. Sure enough, Sakamichi is edging up to Aoyagi and Teshima. And he’s smiling!

It’s the home straight and everyone speeds up. All five boys are neck and neck now. The result? Not shown! LOL At least not until the next episode. Figures!


#20

Episode 18 –

spoiler

The boys are almost at the finish line and they are all fighting to be first. But they are all still neck and neck. Who crosses the finish line first? Why, it Naruko, Imaizumi, and Sakamichi of course! Now, to just finish those thousand kilometers. Without energy at this point, sheer willpower is all they have left.

Teshima and Aoyagi are done. Their bodies have completely given out, although their minds haven’t. Tadokoro is proud of them, but forces them to give up. All three end up in tears. It’s hard to lose everything that you’ve worked so hard for. The Inter-High is out of their reach now.

Naruko, Imaizumi, and Sakamichi did well. Kinjou brings them the news of Teshima and Aoyagi and the boys run to the medical office. The door is locked and Naruko bangs on it, telling his teammates not to give up. It’s funny because the guys aren’t even in there - they are sitting in the hallway. But they do have to drop out of training, since both of them have pulled muscles, and are unable to ride anymore.

Naruko feels bad, thinking it’s their fault, but Teshima tells him that they are the ones that challenged them, so he shouldn’t blame himself. He tells them that they had fun as well. He compliments Sakamichi too. Then Teshima reveals just how disappointed he really is. He tells the trio that Kinjou has chosen all three of them to go to the Inter-High, which surprises them. Teshima makes them promise to win.

The next day is a rainy one, but those thousand kilometers have to be completed. However, equipment doesn’t work well in the rain. But racing is an all weather sport and Kinjou needs the boys to realize this, and to continue to give it their all. Kinjou and Tadokoro finish their thousand, and Kinjou wonders how the first years will do. He knows what his team needs and hopes the first years have what it takes. Makishima is the next to complete the thousand.

Imaizumi and Naruko have about fifty kilometers left. Poor Sakamichi is still in last place, and falling behind even more. The rain hasn’t been his friend either, but he knows that Teshima is depending on him and he won’t give up. With 160 kilometers still to go, Sakamichi falls, and midnight is his deadline. However, he keeps having problems and then his pedal breaks. But he can’t give up!

Sakamichi compensates by pushing his bike uphill and riding downhill. Of all people, Teshima is the one that comes to his rescue. He brings Sakamichi cleats and pedals. In the meantime, Imaizumi and Naruko have completed their thousand, and collapse. The sun comes out as Teshima fixes Sakamichi’s bike and talks with him. He gives Sakamichi a quick lesson on the pedals and cleats, and sends him off. Sakamichi immediately notices the difference. He may just make it by midnight after all! With everyone behind him, wishing him well, Sakamichi makes it with just a few minutes to spare! His friends cheer and Sakamichi cries. Well done Sakamichi!


#21

Episode 19 –

spoiler

Yay! Sakamichi sang again. He always looks so happy when he sings as he rides.

It’s funny that Imaizumi and Naruko feel the need to tell people that they aren’t friends.

Well, now that everyone is back from the training camp, it’s time for make-up lessons, and catching up on those anime shows! No wonder Sakamichi is so happy. LOL But Sakamichi still has training on his mind. Will he even make it to the Inter-High? Was Kinjou about to tell Sakamichi that he doesn’t have what it takes? Kinjou would have to get a phone call just then!

The coach fills Sakamichi in on just how important he is to Kinjou. Not only is Sakamichi going to the Inter-High, but it seems that he’s the team’s unpredictable wild card. And the coach gives him a team jersey! All the first years look cool in their new team jerseys, and very proud as well. Now the really intensive training starts!

However, Sakamichi still has doubts about whether he’s good enough to be on the team. He needs to get over that mind set or he really will bring the team down. He’s not himself and everyone ends up passing him. He’s still feeling tired and has no energy. His teammates notice this as well. Kinjou ends up saving Sakamichi from a bad fall when it looks like he’s about to collapse. With words of encouragement, Kinjou gets Sakamichi back on the right track.

The team huddle was funny, but a nice touch. Of course Imaizumi and Naruko had to complain that they were next to each other. But I think that huddle was just what Sakamichi needed. He’s more excited now and doesn’t doubt himself any longer. And Sakamichi finds out where the Inter-High is going to take place too – Hakone!