The fierce race to claim the title of King of Mountains is reaching its climax! The intense duel between Teshima and Ashikiba not only surprises all the spectators and fans, but also Teshima himself who does not think that he would be cheered and battle the ace of Hakone.
Teshima’s Secret Technique!
The duel is reaching 2.5 kilometers prior to the finish line for the mountain stage. While Ashikiba’s Metronome Dancing gives him the advantage to be faster than his rival, Teshima does not hold back for once. He shows up his secret technique which is steady never giving up cycling to win the race.
Slowly but steadily, Teshima begins to flip the situation and overtake Ashikiba to the front line of the duel. This situation brings more fuel and vibration toward Ashikiba who is extremely joyful and spiritful to have a race with his old friend. Ashikiba gives other kicks to match up to Teshima right a few kilometers before the finish line.
Whom are You All Cheering for?
The persistence and ambition of Teshima are felt by all of the spectators around the track. They all never thought that the #5 rider of Sohoku manages to give a wonderful performance on the final day of the race, and so, everyone begins to cheer and root for Teshima’s victory. All of the noises and support surprise Teshima since he feels unworthy to be given such pop by the crowds.
He quickly remembers what Naruko said about his experience in last year’s Inter-High when the final day’s spectators are a lot more and wilder than the previous days. Teshima feels the sensation and adrenaline thanks to the crowds, and it makes him unstoppable to keep cycling to the upcoming finish line in 1 kilometer.
A Man That Exceeds the Expectations
On the other side of the mountains, we see the three graduated upperclassmen of Sohoku who also spectate and review the race. Tadokoro who is seeing the duel through his binoculars tells Kinjou and Makishima that one of his disciples is having an intense race with Hakone’s tall ace. Kinjou is quickly shocked since he did not think that Teshima is able to make it to the final day’s mountains.
Makishima tells Kinjou that it is okay to be sorry for having that kind of assumption since he also did think that way previously. He was sure that Teshima was just a common and average cyclist, but his hard work and dedication lead to his massive growth. Teshima is probably a skillful cyclist all over, but he was not able to realize it by himself and it took many losses and disappointments to finally recognize his true potential.
One Final Run
While the rest of the Hakone and Sohoku members are cycling a few kilometers behind the lead pack, Teshima is once again complemented by Ashikiba who feels that Teshima is a gifted and talented person all the time. He claims that Teshima has always been a genius in karaoke to entertain people, and this time the condition is only shifted from singing to cycling. Ashikiba states that entertaining people has always been Teshima’s true ability and potential, and now everyone is rooting for him to win the mountain stage.
Those words resonate through Teshima’s heart and mind while they both keep giving their best in the last 100 meters before the mountain finish line. Suddenly, Ashikiba is once again reminiscing about their past when one day after all the events in the previous episode, apparently Teshima had decided to quit the bicycle club. There was a moment when he lost miserably in the last race against the 2nd year student, and it caused Teshima to give up on racing and cycling.
The tenth episode of this season feels like a totally beautiful gift for the hardworking captain of Sohoku. This episode shows us how many obstacles Teshima had fought and how deep pain Teshima had endured during his whole cycling journey from elementary to high school.
A sentence coming from Makishima’s mouth is probably the most inspirational and touching moment from the entire fifth season of Yowamushi Pedal: it’s through hard work and repeated effort that hard work may become a talent. It clearly sums up the entire character writing for Teshima Junta who was once an average racer but is now a formidable climber and honorable captain of Sohoku.