Skip to main content

Planned New 'Tokyo Marathon Foundation' Pledged to be Corruption-Free

http://mainichi.jp/area/tokyo/news/20100609ddlk13010254000c.html
http://www.fnn-news.com/news/headlines/articles/CONN00178713.html
http://sankei.jp.msn.com/region/kanto/tokyo/100608/tky1006081853016-n1.htm

translated and edited by Mika Tokairin and Brett Larner

At the regular meeting of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly on June 8, Metropolitan Government officials held a public question and answer session with representatives of the four major political parties. Among the topics was the planned incorporation of a "Tokyo Marathon Foundation" to oversee management of the event's future. The Minshu Party questioned whether the Foundation would be merely "a cushy perk for upper-level bureaucrats leaving direct public service." Metropolitan officials explained, "The Foundation will serve to maintain the race's organization and thereby allow it to operate as a world-class marathon event. There will be no favoritism for government officials in obtaining positions in the Foundation."

Having been held four times since its inception in 2007, the Tokyo Marathon has thus far been operated by a committee consisting of members of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, the Japanese athletics federation Rikuren and the media. Now the Metropolitan Government is planning to spend $8 million to establish the Tokyo Marathon Foundation. Minshu Party representatives questioned whether this move is in opposition to ongoing administrative reforms. An official from the Metropolitan Government's Lifestyle, Culture and Sports Bureau answered, "By unifying responsibilities, the race administration will become more efficient and the financial burden upon the Metropolitan Government will be reduced." The official also stated that the contract laying out the terms for the business the Foundation will receive from the Metropolitan Government is subject to the Government's standard disclosure policies.

Jimin Party representatives gave a positive evaluation of the proposal, saying, "By incorporating the event's management they will be able to meet the race's needs and stabilize its operation." Mayor Shintaro Ishihara commented, "The Tokyo Marathon has had a very positive response from overseas. It is like a large festival uniting the city through thousands of volunteers and spectators coming together. We hope to use the advantages brought by incorporating the race to help the Tokyo Marathon become a major charity fundraiser and the world's greatest marathon event."

Yoshio Koide, the famed coach of Sydney Olympics women's marathon gold medalist and former marathon world record holder Naoko Takahashi, visited with Metropolitan Government officials the same day to voice his support for the establishment of the Tokyo Marathon Foundation. "The Tokyo Marathon is far too large-scale an event to be handled by City Hall," he told them. "The move to incorporate the race's management will have untold benefits and will significantly help to pull in the needed major corporate sponsors. Boston, New York, Chicago, London, Berlin and the other big races all do it that way, so we should do it here in Japan. I strongly urge you to take this step."

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Men's Marathon Rout - JAAF Executives Announce Resignation

http://www.nikkansports.com/olympic/rio2016/athletics/news/1698472.html

translated by Brett Larner

In the Rio de Janeiro Olympics men's marathon on Aug. 21, Satoru Sasaki (30) was the top Japanese man at 16th in 2:13:57.  Suehiro Ishikawa (36) was 36th, with Hisanori Kitajima (31) placing 94th.

At the end of athletics competition Japan's total was two medals and two top eight finishes, a total exceeding the JAAF's target one medal but falling short of its goal of five top eight finishes.  JAAF strengthening committee chairman Kazunori Asaba (55) announced that he intends to resign his position following the Rio Olympics.  Strengthening committee vice-chairman Katsumi Sakai (56) and director of men's marathoning Takeshi Soh (63) are also expected to join the exodus of resignations.  Japanese athletics will be forced to make a fresh start before the Tokyo Olympics.

Yuta Shitara Breaks Japanese Men's Half Marathon National Record in Berlin Marathon Tuneup at Usti nad Labem Half

A week after his 28:55 at the Birell Prague Grand Prix 10 km and just eight days out from the Berlin Marathon, Yuta Shitara (Honda) made the great leap forward, taking 8 seconds off Atsushi Sato's 2007 half marathon Japanese national record, finishing 8th at the Czech Republic's Usti nad Labem Half Marathon.

Shitara is probably most well-known outside Japan for going through halfway under 62 minutes during his marathon debut at this year's Tokyo Marathon and still ending up with a 2:09:27, but he's been turning heads in Japan since his second year at Toyo University when he broke a stage record at the 2012 Hakone Ekiden and outkicked the U.S.A.'s Dathan Ritzenhein to finish in 1:01:48 at the NYC Half two months later, until this year the fastest time ever by a Japanese man on U.S soil.

Three weeks before Tokyo this year he ran a 1:01:19 PB at the Marugame Half. Many people would call that a solid tuneup three weeks out from a serious marathon, but eight days? In P…

Kawauchi Leaves for Oslo After Trying 100 m Time Trial

The civil servant runner admits to being shocked. 2017 London World Championships marathoner and men's captain Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) left from Tokyo's Narita Airport for Norway the evening of Sept. 13 to run the Sept. 16 BMW Oslo Marathon.

On Sept. 9 at the National University Track and Field Championships, Yoshihide Kiryu (Toyo Univ.) became the first Japanese man to break 10 seconds in the 100 m when he set a new national record of 9.98. The news has been the talk of the nation ever since. Kawauchi said, "It's pretty amazing. It took up the front page of every newspaper." What can he run for 100 m? "My PB is 13.1, but right now, 13.9," he admitted.

Kawauchi ran that time, "in the morning the day before yesterday," he said. "I did two time trials. I even wore spikes. I ran them for real and only did 13.9. To be honest, it was pretty shocking." Although short sprints are well outside his area of expertise it seemed…