translated by Brett Larner
Appearing at a press conference in his hometown of Isahaya, Nagasaki on Mar. 29, London Olympics marathon team member Arata Fujiwara (30, Tokyo T&F Assoc.) talked about his goals at the Olympics, saying, "If you can run 2:07 then you can compete with the Africans. I'm going to train focusing on time without worrying about what place it gets me."
Before the press conference Fujiwara made an appearance at his alma mater, Isahaya H.S., receiving words of support and encouragement from his old coach Toshihiro Matsumoto, 55, and students. "All of your support is a powerful encouragement," Fujiwara told them. "I want to run the kind of race that will let me pay it back to you."
Translator's note: Although it seems likely to change in London, to date only Beijing Olympics gold and silver medalists Samuel Wanjiru (Kenya) and Jaouad Gharib (Morocco) have ever run 2:07 or better at the Olympics.