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Freeman Cebu Sports

Saturday Sufferfest

ALLEZ - Jose Vicente 'JV' Araneta - The Freeman

Last week, I wrote that riding along the Transcentral Highway, is a day lost in my life. It’s that tough. Since I rode this beast of a route last week, and all I was harping was how hard the ride was, I’ll give you my numbers. The reason I’m doing this is to give you a perspective on how this climb looks like from the armchair when you attempt to ride the Tour ni Frank This weekend.

The gun is started along the vicinity of Gaisano Balamban, and it starts a with false flat- looks flat when its really ascending- for a few hundred meters and the suffering starts.

The climb at the start is just short but steep and it’ll sometimes lead to a misconception that its going to be a walk in the park. After 2km, the real climbing starts. Grades of about 16% at the maximum kicks in for the next 10km. This is along Brangay Cansomoroy which we call the, “C”. This is the stretch where you, a- will regret joining the TnF, b- will think of getting off and walk, c- during the walk, will wish you had brought with you a pair of slippers, d- will think of, “Im going to ruin my Sidi’s”, e- think your gearing is not enough, f- think if this is going to end. If you want to get over this hump, its going to be a long self-talk that this is easy.

Once you have conquered the “C”, the next four km will be a series of ascents and descents, and then you hit a 2km of steep descent, which is scary when its raining. This is followed by a 2km of steep climbing. If you had already burned all of your matches, then believe me, this is Calvary!

Past this area, its going to be sweet. You can now see the glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak. But the TnF is not going to end cold and sweet. It’s climax is steep, painful and a punch in the gut,

Frank Gatdula, the founder if the TnF, decided to finish this years edition, and for the first time, at the Tops of Cebu! It’s a crazy finish but my kind of crazy! This icing on the cake is climb whose gradients can reach as much as 18% in this one km ascent to the sky. If you can arrive at the Tops, chapeau! But if you get to the Tops without even dismounting even once, then it should be uploaded to Strava. Of course, for the fit cyclists, they don’t even think of walking, but for weekend more “mature” cyclists like me, its a goal that I want to accomplish.

I’ve never been a big fan of “PB’s” or personal best when I ride or race, because I believe its just an excuse for being unprepared. But for this epic route, I’ll make this an exception. You’ll never experience pain and suffering like this one.

Only in Cebu, only in the Tour ni Frank.

TOUR NI FRANK

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