Madison can't run in the marathon because of a sprained ankle, but as long as she can watch Sakura, that's all right. The girls are all impressed as usual...except one. Meilin brags about how Li and her are going to take first and second place. Why aspire for second? After Sakura and Li's practice, Meilin tells Sakura she's going to leave her in her dust. "You'll leave me in your dust?" Li gives her a dose of reality by pointing out she's never run a long-distance race before, and indeed while she initially shows incredible speed in running the first of 5 laps, she becomes so tired out that she doesn't even complete the lap and her character model outline shows. She tries to excuse it by saying she wasn't feeling good, but Li knows it's because she's never run any more than the 100-yard dash.
Sakura, last year's champion of the race, describes the long run throughout the suburban area, but she doesn't mind since she loves running. Tori sardonically remarks she's got a lot of practice by waking up late for school. Meanwhile, at the Li residence, Meilin sets off immediately after dinner to train for the marathon. Wei warns her she'll get stomach cramps from running so soon, but Meilin ignores the warning. At night, she stops at the penguin slide, her stomach hurting, when Wei shows up to offer her a blanket. He imparts words of wisdom, telling her she should focus on her breathing rhythm and move slower, conserving her energy for the finish line. It turns out Li felt bad for the girl, so he told Wei to help her out. A little segment of her training keeping those warm words in mind shows, and she feels a lot better about herself.
It's the day of the big race, and Meilin of course taunts Sakura about her "top trainer". She brags Sakura will not be able to keep up with her, complete with Evil Laugh. Someone was having fun with her voice. And yet, the girl tries so hard that I actually want her to win. Julian and Tori are going to be waiting at the finish line cheering Sakura on, and Madison and Kero are reporting the race sports channel style. And the race is on, as Sakura, Li, and Meilin easily take the leads and head off just around the corner.
There's a point on the horizon Where the mountains meet the sea. Just around the corner Great possibilities!
Meilin's training seems to have paid off, as she's barely trailing behind Li but ahead of Sakura.
Where every tomorrow All around the world Still holds a promise To every boy and girl
Sakura waves to Maggie as the three pass by. Yay, Continuity Nod!
Now we're getting warmer Look, here comes the future
Meilin is on a roll! She's seeing the fruits of her labour, and yet she still is only counting on second place. Seriously, girl.
Look, here comes the future Just around the corner
Tori and Julian are waiting at Cherry Tree Street where the racers haven't arrived yet. Kero locates the trio on the trail about to round the corner, and Sakura waves to the camera as they head in.
We made a promise We cross the heights for keeps Now everything that's old is new Great possibilities From the mountains to the sea
Kero can no longer spot the racers amongst the cherry trees, so it's off to the park. The standings have not changed yet, but Li sees a shocking sight on the horizon.
Now we're getting warmer Look, here comes the future
Julian's very presence inspires Li to pick up the pace, and Sakura too sprints past Meilin. Alas, Meilin is losing steam as the race cranks the heat up.
Just around the corner Now we're getting warmer
The older boys are concerned that Sakura and Li are moving too fast, and might not make it. The camera then cuts to the last-place runner Nikki, followed by Madison's words of encouragement. Unfortunately, as the awesome song ends, ominous music begins. The main three pass by that same place yet again. Sakura senses something's up, but Meilin is unconvinced. Kero is shocked to see Zachary as the first to cross his position, and is informed that the three have passed Madison twice in the same direction. Meilin suddenly trips and twists her ankle, but despite her condition, she's still determined to keep going, even denying Sakura's suggestion of help from the teacher. Unfortunately, Mr. Terata thinks Nikki was the last runner, and the team recognizes they've been running in circles. Kero informs Sakura that The Loop◊ is behind this, and Li gets out his Lasin Board to identify the target. Sakura is surprised that he always carries it around. That's called responsibility, sweetheart.
Kero tells Sakura to find the connection before Li does, and with the Colette method, she trips over a weird red laser line. There's the mismatched scenery. Simultaneously, Sakura and Li summon their swords to cut the connection and seal the red band. It's a little indecisive, but it goes to Sakura since in the sword scene, Sakura's sword came down a little more than Li's. This is despite Sakura's summoning animation taking longer. Main character status has its perks. Of course, Meilin whines that Li should have got it.
Meilin is in no condition to run, yet she doesn't want any help from Sakura and insists on continuing anyways because she trained so hard. Li nonetheless manages to convince her to hop on his back as he'll carry her to the finish line. The audience applauds this heartwarming gesture as Meilin gives him a hug. She turns to Sakura and yells at her for getting lucky, affirming that she'll capture the rest of the Clow Cards with Li. Sheesh, let it go missy. You're choking your boyfriend.