Yowamushi Pedal: Glory Line: Episode 25 – “Their Respective Starting Lines”

Well, it looks like the final episode of the season will end with the start of the third day of the Inter-High. We start the episode with Miki and Aya waking up the next morning and getting ready for the third day, with Miki thinking about the fact that it’s the third day and how for some of the team, it’s their second Inter-High. In a way, she’s kind of recapping the previous season, and also pointing out that at this point, Sohoku hasn’t won any colored number tags this year.

We then move on to the racers arriving at the starting line for the third day. The first to arrive, of course, is Hakone Academy. During an interview, Izumida makes it clear that Hakone Academy only cares about taking the day’s finish line… if any other teams want the sprint or mountain lines, they can have them. This isn’t terribly surprising to me to see that Hakone Academy only cares about winning the big prize.

And now it’s time for the strategy meeting in Sohoku’s tent. Teshima gives a pep talk, and plays up how their faith in miracles will take them to the finish line. I really hope they can pull some kind of an upset during this final day, since they haven’t been able to do as well during the first two days of the Inter-High. And after they leave the tent, Miki gives them encouragement. She focuses on giving high-fives to everyone, but she also asks Aoyagi about his legs. He realizes that she’s noticed his situation, and she points out that she’s their manager and would notice something like that. She tells him not to push himself too hard, but I’ve got a feeling that Aoyagi is going to do push himself, anyway. I wouldn’t expect anything less from any of the characters in Yowamushi Pedal.

As the racers line up at the starting line, the announcer says the race will start in ten minutes. Oh, my! Onoda actually has a little fan club… three girls cheer for him before the race! He’s so taken aback, though, and it’s adorable. Imaizumi’s face during this scene is also quite hilarious. But poor Onoda becomes so flustered that he falls. Teshima, meanwhile, is doing deep breathing exercises and trying to calm himself down before the start of the race. He realizes he’s this way because it’s the last day of his first Inter-High, and he remembers the important things he went through that led up to this point. He ends his thoughts by thinking that he probably won’t finish the Inter-High today. Oh, Teshima, don’t be so pessimistic. But he does end by thinking that as long as someone wearing their jersey crosses the finish line, he’ll be able to see it through his eyes.

And now the announcer declares that the race will start in five minutes. Oh, and an audience member finally points something out that had been nagging at me… where is Kyoto Fushimi? After all of Midousuji’s blustering and bragging at the end of the second day, you’d think he’d be there to continue rubbing this into everyone’s faces. Is he planning to make some kind of a grand entrance? Looks like I was right… they’re pedaling up to the starting line with only five minutes to spare. OMG, the entire team has shaved their heads, so they could “shed everything.” You can tell that the other team members do not look happy about this. Midousuji prattles on about tossing away “your useless pride, your worthless celebratory mood, your useless showing off.” Is that why you were such a jerk the previous day, Midousuji? So you could let all that out before you had to shed it away?

And now the third day of the Inter-High begins, and Manami just now shows up because he overslept. Oops! The racers start in the order they crossed the finish line the previous day, and that’s getting going. We see the three leaders, then Ashikiba, and then Mizuta and Onoda. As Onoda rides, he sees Manami heading the opposite direction in order to get to the starting line. Manami declares that he will catch up to Onoda and that they’ll battle it out during the race. I really hope they can actually have their race on the third day, since it wasn’t able to happen during the second day. We then see Manami getting scolded by his team for coming late. And the second pack, which is led by Hakone Academy, gets going, followed by Sohoku.

We then move to Midousuji, Imaizumi, and Yuto, who are in the lead. We see people cheering for Midousuji, even though he was using such unsportsmanlike conduct during the second day’s award ceremony. Sigh. The focus then shifts to Onoda and Mizuta, and at this point in the race, Onoda is at a disadvantage, since the first part of the course is a long road that’s flat. But Onoda is determined to catch up with Imaizumi. Returning to the front, we see that Ashikiba is already catching up to the three lead riders… and this causes Imaizumi to panic. He keeps hoping Onoda will catch up soon. OK, Onoda picks up his cadence to catch up, and Mizuta is stunned.

And now we go to a sequence showing the times Onoda and Imaizumi have raced against each other, set to the music of a former opening theme song. Now Onoda is thinking about how he met Imaizumi and how he got Onoda into road racing. Onoda realizes how much this has changed him. He also thinks back on the senpai he met the previous year (Kinjou, Tadokoro, and Makishima). And then he thinks about Sugimoto, Koga, Miki, and Aya, who are supporting the team on the sidelines. And then he thinks about Hakone Academy and Kyoto Fushimi.

We briefly return to the present, and then Onoda thinks about what has happened earlier in this year’s Inter-High. Right at the end of the episode, Onoda catches up with Imaizumi and says, “Let’s go the finish line.” And that’s where the episode ends.

There was no omake at the end, but there is a shot of Imaizumi, Naruko, and Onoda, with the words “See you later.” Hopefully this means we will get another season of Yowamushi Pedal at some point.

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