Episode 3 Summary
Down Comes the Flag
Uchida had joined the Rideback Club and was already excitedly trying out one of the Ridebacks. She falls over which gives Hishida a scare, worried the Rideback "Balon" he had put together overnight was damaged. Rin on the other hand, was a little disappointed she wasn't going to get to use Fuego for training. Fuego's components were custom tuned by Kagura and its regulation standard was beyond what was permitted for the race so she will just have to use a different Rideback the Balon instead. Hishida assures her it will be no problem because both machines were of the same machine model.
Kataoka soon arrives to get the Ridebacks transported to the circuit. It's been half a month since Rin started her training and she is rewarded with a pair of gloves. Tomorrow was the time to settle their differences in the eighth"All Japan Rideback Race Championship".
Every racer was getting a practice run first. The team were surprised how slow Rin was running. She is overtaken by Cobra twins who barge their way pass her. After a single lap, Rin explains there was something odd with the handling. She didn't seem to be able to control it as freely as she could with the Fuego. Hearing this, Kataoka asks Hishida to raise the Laser Signalling Device's limit and re-adjust the absorber so that it was easier to turn left corners. Hishida complains there was only two hours left until the qualifying race but he had no choice if Rin was going to have a chance.
Kataoka walks off to be interviewed by a TV station asking if she was going to win for the second time in a row. Kataoka was of course confident about doing so and didn't care if her father, Minister of Finance and Foreign Affairs, Nanpuu Kataoka was there to cheer for her or not. Her brother Ryuunosuke Kataoka also happened to be the leader of the Elite Police Force.
Soon it was the qualifying race yet Rin was making no progress. It wasn't the settings after all. Kataoka was in the lead but she slows down just to teach the Cobras a lesson for being rude to Rin. Meanwhile, Hishida starts to wonder and thinks back to how Kataoka has never managed to drive Fuego properly before while Rin managed to do so the first time. He examines the Fuego's ACS (Automatic Control System) and notices the matrix was a mess. It was so messed up it's no use at all. He wonders why Okagura would do something like this.
As Rin drives into the pit for the finals, Hishida whispers to Kataoka about making some risky changes and she agrees to take a gamble. Rin looked down but Shouko recognises she looked exactly like the times when she was preparing for a performance. She wasn't going to back off. Just before the race gets off, Hishida lets Rin know that he's disabled the ACS which was the way Fuego was when she used it. She gets off to a slow start but steadily crawls up the ranks. Although the Balon was still kind of too high when turning corners, she felt more in control now and was smoothly overtaking the other racers.
However, Okagura notices what Hishida had done and gives him a call. He orders him to re-enable the ACS so that Rin can stop driving so recklessly and affecting the other racers. Shouko asks what was wrong and Hishida explains he had disabled the ACS which was responsible for automatically balancing the suspension on the Rideback. Without it, the Rideback could easily fall to the ground but, he assures her Rin will be fine. His theory is that either Rin is reacting faster than the ACS or, she can balance well at an astounding speed. Even the commentators were impressed how fast the amateur was catching up.
Hishida decides not to call Rin in because there was just one more lap to go but unfortunately, the Balon's engine gives way and Rin is forced to pull to the side. The exhaust system had failed, causing the engine to burn and Hishida is going to have to pay for it. It really was a pity. It was also then that Okagura realises the Balon wasn't good enough for Rin's driving skills. Rideback Princess, Takaoka wins first place.
Meanwhile, Ryuunosuke was having a negotiation with Colonel Romanof Carenberg, leader of the GGP Public Security Force who had just arrived in Japan. They had met once before while he was on a specialist training course. Romanof was said to have led the team of Ridebacks that turned the war in the GGP's favour sometime ago. That legendary battle was known as the "Arizona War" but all records have been erased. Romanof wanted Ridebacks to be brought in to help fight the terrorists of the country but, Ryuunosuke disagrees thinking their current forces in Japan were enough to suppress them. Romanof laughs at how stubborn the Japanese were even though one of them had been in that legendary battle. They've wasted enough time not deploying the Ridebacks.
That night, the whole Rideback Club was celebrating Kataoka's victory. Uchida was drunk just from the smell of alcohol and Rin was no where to be seen. She was outside taking a cruise on the Fiego. Okagura passes by and stops to see what was wrong. She apologises for what happened to the Balon but is told it wasn't her fault. The engineers just didn't do their jobs. Okagura goes onto asking why she didn't slow down on the Fuego when it was driving towards the end of the road but instead chose to leap off it that other day. She answers she was panicking but somehow, trusted Fuego before going off to cruise in the night again.
Wow, it's been half a month since episode two already! Well I guess they have to speed the plot up because this is going to be a short series. Yay for Tamayo standing up for Rin.
And what a pity for Rin. Was cheering her on when she was going up the ranks but, at least her potential is recognised now. I'm thinking this hero in the "Arizona War" might be Okagura since he seems to be trying to hide something by tinkering with the Fuego's settings. So what will be unlocked if the settings are fixed I wonder? Big scheme coming soon.
Doesn't that last shot remind anyone of E.T...? Or maybe you're not that old.