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Behind-the-Scenes Video: Tomomi Nishikubo gives insights in producing “Bike Pentathlon”

Japanese trials bike wizard Tomomi Nishikubo is a huge fan of the Olympics. When the Games came to his home country in July the Ninja Rider wanted to do his bit. As “street trials” is not an official discipline Tomomi had to get creative – the idea for his personal bike pentathlon was born. In the now released Behind-the-Scenes clip the 29-year-old rider from Shibuya gives some insights in the production process, time pressure and the hurdles the team had to overcome.

Despite a lot of difficulties Tomomi and his crew pulled it off anyway and the clip could be released as Tomomi’s tribute to the Olympic Games 2020. In the following Q&A Tomomi talks about his motivation for the video, his relationship to the Olympic Games and, of course, on shooting the Bike Pentathlon video.

How did you get the idea for the Bike Pantathlon?

I came up with this idea about a year ago. Too late to realize for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, but when they got moved to 2021, that was the perfect timing.

What was the most difficult part of filming?

Actually, the most difficult part was the location hunting. We reached out to over 60 stadiums for permissions to film there. But as bikes are strictly forbidden in track and field stadiums most of them declined: “No, it’s not made for bike.” We really struggled until we finally found this awesome stadium and they said “yes”.

What was the most difficult trick? How many attempts did it take?

The most difficult trick was the final part of 3,000 m steeplechase, the Torii hurdle. This huge hurdle was built onsite. We procured materials locally and built and painted it while filming other parts. It was a bit slippery and shaky. Also, the day we shot this trick was real windy. I was very nervous and it actually took me some time to realize the nose drop.

You only had five days of filming? Did this deadline create extra pressure? How well did you handle it?

Yes, we had only five days for filming. But unfortunately, day one was rainy, so we had actually only four days left. Luckily, I was able to just focus on the tricks, because the production team was formed of friends only and I could rely on and just trusted them 100 per cent.

Who were the other athletes, that you competed against?

They were former track and field athletes. We reached out to them and they came from all over Japan to support the production.

Where did you shoot the video?

It was filmed in Tomakomai, Hokkaido, the north part of Japan. We always have rain season in Japan in July. But there is no real rain season in the north part of Japan. So, we decided to move the production there.

Are you a big fan of the Olympic Games?

Yes, of course! I was super stoked on having the Olympic Games in my country and just couldn’t stop myself jumping into the Games in my own way. Haha!

Are you a fan of the Track and Field disciplines? What’s your favorite discipline?

I like it a lot. Especially the 3,000 m steeplechase. I always think it somehow related to trials because both have some obstacles you need to overcome.

Could you imagine to participate in the Olympics yourself one day?

Uuum, I can’t really imagine that now. But with BMX having joined the Olympics it is maybe no longer just a dream. Who knows? If trials will be part of it one day, I’m definitely gonna jump into the Games again! Haha!

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Pictures: © Satoshi Saijo / @satoshi.saijo

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