11 January 2015

Francois Pervis in the Keirin culture

For our French speaking members and friends, this documentary about the adventures of track World Champion Francois Pervis of France in Japan, notably his life in the "Keirin culture" of Japan.  A good view behind the scenes that will be appreciated by anyone who has raced at CSC Shuzenji or done laps at the "Kawasaki Bank" track on a Sunday afternoon.

Hat tip to MOB at Cyclitis, who found it. 

Hiroshi is frequently mentioning overseas demand for anything "Keirin" and the niche-strength of the "NJS" certification.  Maybe this kind of documentary is how the image is made?

The Japanese Keirin world has traditionally been very closed to foreigners.  I have never had much interest -- basically cyclists as the object of gambling, a substitute for horse and horse track betting. ... with all the opportunities for "fixing" the result that exist in other gambling, and more so.  But based on this video, there seems to be some interest in reform, as Japanese keirin riders, who once were competitive at international track racing, no longer make it onto the podium.  And of course, there is 2020 and the Tokyo Olympics, which gives 5+ years in which to make reforms and have something to show for it!

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