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Star-Bulletin Sports

Monday, May 1, 2000


Sunday Sessions:
Tour de Kakaako

The staff of presents this special video essay by Star-Bulletin Chief Photographer Dean Sensui. The footage was shot, edited and produced yesterday.

<A HREF="">[View QuickTime Movie]</A>
Dean Sensui.
A special video report.

Bicycle enthusiasts take over
the streets of Kakaako
for a criterium

By Dean Sensui


The multi-hued blurs you may have seen orbiting a two-block area in Kakaako are participants the Sunday Sessions, the local version of the classic sport of bike racing.

This past Sunday more than two dozen cyclists gathered on the pavement to participate in a series of criteriums supported by the City and County of Honolulu and promoted by the Tradewind Cycling Team.

A criterium is a fast-paced race around a closed course. In this case, with the City's permission the four streets surrounding Mother Waldron Park in Kakaako were coned off for the afternoon. Cyclists race for a specific time, (30 to 45 minutes, depending upon classification and ability) until the officials ring a bell designating the start of the last lap. The rider who crosses the line first on the next lap wins the race.

In one of the races, called a "miss and out", the last rider of each lap is pulled from the race until only two racers remain. It makes for a fast and furious finish.

Criteriums are ideal as a spectator sport, especially if the course is a short one like the Sunday Sessions races. Traditional road races are much longer, lasting two hours or more, and typically covering 40 to 100+ miles over a point-to-point course or a 5- to 20-mile lap course. In a traditional road race, spectators can wait almost all day to see a group of riders (known as a peloton) zip by in a few seconds.

These races are open to nearly everyone. The main requirement is having a racing license from the United States Cycling Federation. If you don't already have one, a license can be purchased at the course on the day of the race. This "day license" allows you to race only for that day in the Category 5 beginner's event.

More such races are scheduled for May 14 and 28; June 4 and 11; July 2 and 30; and August 13, 20 and 27.

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