Title: Yowamushi Pedal Vol. 17
Author: Wataru Watanabe
Release Date: April 20, 2021
Publisher: Yen Press
With Onoda now as a second-year, Sohoku will have the chance to compete again in the Inter-High. However, winning the race a second time isn’t going to be so simple, and Yowamushi Pedal Vol. 17 is a reminder of how much effort is needed.
It’s not like the other teams had no chance of winning last time, and one thing is certain: during this one year between Inter-High, they haven’t stagnated. Quite the opposite, as the previous volumes had already shown, everyone’s undergoing training and hyped up to win this time.
After the qualifiers, the club has the traditional yearly training camp. This time around, the team has the mission of actually completing the 1,000 km worth of laps. There’s also an additional mission: only the first six will continue in the main team.
Despite what was said in the last volume, the high stakes of possibly having to sit out of the competition come back. However, the shocking part is that one of the characters previously established reveals his interest in taking one of their positions.
This competition on the training session feels a little like a retread of events in volume 16. However, a specific rivalry developed here that wasn’t shown before also explains a little about the old Sohoku team’s past.
At the end of the volume, Inter-High is already coming, which means the next volume should be a lot more exciting. It’ll be time to finally see what the rival schools have up their sleeves and how the training pays off for everyone.
Hakone is eager to take back the champion title, and Kyoto Fushimi’s Midousuji seems to be plotting something that might lead to a surprising twist during the race. Compared to what should be coming, the volume was merely an appetizer, and it shows.
On the graphic side, the volume is also pretty average. The characters are very expressive, and the race’s competitive moments are filled with energy due to how Wataru Watanabe uses lines and shows the sweat and muscles of the characters. But there’s no scene impressive enough to be noteworthy in the series.
Besides the main plot, two small sections explain some cycling concepts. One of them covers Cyclo-Cross while the other is about Road Bikes frames, both of which can be helpful to anyone getting interested in cycling because of the manga. It’s also interesting to see the mangaka corners, which describe his own experiences with bikes.
Yowamushi Pedal Vol. 17 is an average volume focused on how the training course goes in Onoda’s second year. It’s mostly an appetizer for the upcoming Inter-High, but it feels a little like a rehash of the previous volume without doing anything noteworthy. Despite being a mostly mundane volume that struggles to be fun, I’m still excited to see what comes next for the series.
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