Daisuke, Hiro and Hama came over to the states this year to kick off their cyclocross season. The racing doesn't start until much later in Japan (imagine that, I wonder what that's like?) and so so - with a little Speedvagen Camp in the works - it was off to the states to race. Now, we have had a much dryer than usual fall so far, so the racing was a little hot and dusty, and what do you do in that case? Head into the woods instead of out under the scorching sun.
Abby led us up into Forest Park and down a few of her favorite fire roads. You know, the ones that are totally legal to ride. Because that is how we like to ride - legally. But, what gets me every time, is our giddiness and the ready and willing nature that we both have to show off this particular piece of woods.
We can direct your attention over here to where we helped (David and I tried to help) Abby and Sarah run the entire length of the Wildwood trail — thus inspiring the sock — or how the SSCXWC once had a time trial that went up Saltzman to determine their starting order. There are many memories hidden under these leaves. Abby and I used to ride Leif with our pal Slate every Friday morning before work. It used to rain in those days and we would get super muddy and at the bottom of the hill she would peel off and head over to her job at Chris King. Oh how the times are changing.
Nonetheless, this is why we default to Forest Park. And it would appear, even though Hama and Hiro had to portage their bikes a few times, that they had fun as well.
Also, a note on these three — if you're going to do something crazy sometime soon — like try to run up Mt. Fuji or race cyclocross bikes in three different states in the same number of days — this trio could quite possibly be your swiss army knife of compadres. Daisuke used to be in the Independent Fabrication Mountain Bike Team (remember when they were yellow and green?) and has a plethora of stories to tell. He also puts on the Nobeyama Cyclocross Race. Hama is part of the Japanese National Guard and could literally grill you a squirrel in a manner of minutes were you starving. Plus, he duked it out with the best of the best in the UCI race at the Boulder Cup a weekend later. And Hiro? Well, he's what we might call a special case. Not only could he guide you through the underbelly of Toyko should you need it, but he could do it with the ease and charm required to do so. More on that later.
My only hope is that next time they come through, pass out on my couch, drink all my beer and disappear in the wee morning hours, is that they stay longer. You know, so that we can really show them what Oregon cycling is all about.