Freeman Cebu Sports

It’s January, it’s the TnF!

ALLEZ - Jose Vicente Araneta - The Freeman

No, its not the Tour de France, that’s July. TnF in January is the Tour ni Frank.

The Tour ni Frank is the love project of Frank Gatdula, a social worker/DJ/cyclist who originated from Compostela but is now living in Stockton, Californian fiftia.

I’ve lost count of the official number of editions, its more than fifteen, and that’s the only thing I’m sure of, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is that it’s here again!

The TnF don’t follow a formula in how the race is presented. Sometimes, its a two day race with three stages. It also doesn’t follow the same route every year.

This year though is different since its only a one day event, but the route is brutal. It starts in Balamban from the western side of Cebu and finishes at the “Top of Cebu”, or “Tops”. If you have’t heard about it, I thinks its the highest point of Cebu City that can be seen from downtown at night. The route is  a classic, meaning its the toughest climb that I’ve ever done. Starting from Balamban, it follows a series of curves and very steep inclines. One suggestion, that a participant needs to consider seriously, is to bring a rubber sandal. Sometimes, its faster to dismount and walk than hardheadedly ride uphill with a speed similar to the speed of walking!

I’ve ridden over the TCH I guess about them times, and it is so hard that I think that I lose a day of my life just riding over these mountains. Of the ten times I’ve ridden over it, there was only one time that I never dismounted and walked.

Yesterday, I rode over it starting from the Cebu side going to Balamba and I realized that this route is less tough to ride to Balamban-Cebu route. There was string winds and heavy rains, probably a residue of Typhone Usman but it didn’t deter me from finishing what I had started. Took me seven, yes Virginia, that’s 7 hours on the saddle.

While the route is tough in itself, the last kilometer or so is “hell”! That drag to Tops is just a beast  that I wouldn’t be surprised to see riders clipping their cycling shoes and walking.

The TnF will be held on Saturday instead of a Sunday. Mark your calendars, that’s January 12, 2019. There are only two categories, 40yo and under and 40yo and above. Registration is at 100Php. You can now submit at Toto’s Bike Shop in Mandaue.

Wishes  for the Pro Peloton in 2019

Numero uno, I wish that team SKY and Dave Brailsford could find new sponsor and keep the team together. Number two, I hope that Peter Sagan will win Paris-Roubaix and Tour of Flanders. If there is any deserving rider out there, it’s Sagan, because he is a fan favorite and he helps make cycling relevant. Third, I wish that a new face will win any of the Grand Tour.

What your wish?

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