translated and edited by Brett Larner
London Olympics men's marathoner and Shimonoseki native Kentaro Nakamoto (29, Team Yasukawa Denki), met with Yamaguchi prefecture lieutenant governor Minoru Okada Aug. 28 at the Yamaguchi Prefectural Government headquarters to discuss his 6th-place finish at the Olympics. Lieutenant Governor Okada complimented Nakamoto, telling him, "Your run was a great source of pride for all citizens of Yamaguchi. We were all tremendously impressed and inspired by the way you came up late in the race." In honor of Nakamoto's performance the lieutenant governor presented him with a selection of locally-produced agricultural and marine food and other items produced by companies within the prefecture.
Lieutenant Governor Okada also asked Nakamoto, "What do you think about while you are running?" Nakamoto replied, "When I'm running I think about beating whoever is in front of me," adding, "In London I was so focused on the race that I didn't notice the surroundings or the scenery at all."
The same day, Nakamoto, who runs for the Kita-Kyushu-based Yasukawa Denki corporate team, also visited Kita-Kyushu mayor Kenji Kitahashi to share his Olympic experience. Nakamoto told Mayor Kitahashi, "Thanks to all the great support and encouragement I got from everyone in Kita-Kyushu and elsewhere, I was able to come 6th and meet my goal of a top-eight finish. I'm already looking four years ahead and will do my best to get there. I want to keep identifying and tackling the issues one at a time, targeting each race along the way and continuing to improve."