Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Last week I told my local bike shop guy I needed some new racing gloves. Wakatsuki-san is a former S-class pro keirin racer with strong connections to the local keirin stadium, so he said, "Let's go to the keirin-jo store", which is NOT open to the public. Nice!

Definite kid in a candy store situation! Back there you can see boxes of Nitto bars, shorts and armor, and on the top Arai and Dic keirin helmets...,

...MKS pedals, Yoshida grips, more shorts (I like the pink!)...,

...and then of course the racer's true essentials, chocolate and cigarettes.

These are the nice ladies who helped me with my purchase.

My purchase. As you can see, I got a bit carried away, but what the hell!

Wakatsuki-san then gave me a bit of a tour. This is Inoue-san, a future star of pro keirin. He was the number one student at last year's keirin school. I'll be betting on him Saturday night!

Racers were just arriving and unpacking for the weekend's race. These are bike flight cases.

Bike testing rigs for the pre-race technical inspection. Apparently the top one applies force to the pedals, then bottom bracket deflection is measured. Or something like that.

Then it was time for lunch-- in the keirin-jo's racer dormitory! This and the keirin-jo itself are stricty no-cellphones to avoid any chance of racers being bought by gamblers.

Wakatsuki-san and his curry and udon. It was pretty good!

The cafeteria is on the top floor. Nice view of the Tamagawa, and if it's clear, Mt. Fuji.

Doumoarigatougozaimasu, Wakatsuki-san!