Nice to meet you Paul.
My reply is not going to be much help I'm afraid, but some of the best bicycle races I have seen in the world, have always involved me.
When cycling through some of the more remote, and to that matter less remote places there will always be children that want to race you, or catch you up and over take you.
I just let them, then suddenly change down a gear pick up speed, put on a boost of energy and overtake them again and leave them behind. It always brings a smile, shouts and waves. What more can you ask for? Though I must admit, there have been occasions where having already pedaled 80+km for the day the last thing you really want to do is get into a racing match with a youngster. Many of them never cycle outside the village, or further than the next village anyway.
Have a good time here, and with your travels.