Skip to main content

Shanghai Marathon Eliminates 15-Year Title Sponsor Toray and Eight Other Japanese Sponsors

http://sankei.jp.msn.com/world/news/120929/chn12092920570005-n1.htm

translated by Brett Larner

On Sept. 29 China's Shanghai Metropolitan Sports Bureau announced the 17th running of the Shanghai Marathon on Dec. 2, with applications scheduled to open Oct. 6.  Noteworthy in the announcement was that Japanese corporation Toray, title sponsor since the Shanghai Marathon's second running, has been removed from the official race title, with eight other major Japanese companies including Japan Airlines and Uniqlo also having been taken off the sponsor list.

On Sept. 11 the same organizers had scheduled a press conference to release the outline of the race but stopped midway to announce, "Due to the Japanese government's attitude toward the Senkaku Islands (a.k.a. Diaoyu Islands) situation it is unacceptable to have a Japanese company as our title sponsor," clearly indicating that their actions are motivated by anti-Japanese sentiment.  This year the race aims to have 4000 more runners than last year and move up to a field of 30,000, but it is likely that the number of Japanese participants will be lower.

The photo below on the Shanghai Marathon website has been poorly doctored to remove the Toray name from the runners' race bibs, although it is still visible in the smaller version of the picture at lower left.


The current list of sponsors on the Shanghai Marathon is thin at best, with AIMS listed as the only international sponsor.  It is difficult to see an international organization such as AIMS condoning this politicization of the sport.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Japan's London World Championships Marathon Squad Arrives Back Home

The six members of Japan's men's and women's marathon teams at the ongoing London World Championships returned to Tokyo's Haneda Airport on Aug. 9. Decked out in the official team suit, Japanese team captain and at 9th the top-placing Japanese marathoner in London Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) spoke to the media.

Having declared pre-race his intention to withdraw from consideration for future Japanese National Team positions, post-race Kawauchi showed no change in that intent. With regard to his future plans, his motivation as a competitor likewise remaining unchanged, Kawauchi indicated that he will run Decmeber's Fukuoka International Marathon,where his 3rd-place overall finish last year earned him his place in London. "In Fukuoka I want to break my PB and run 2:07," he said. "There are things I want to accomplish besides being on the National Team."

Kawauchi revealed that his next marathon will be September's Oslo Marathon, whe…

Silver and Bronze - Summary of Japanese Performances at 2017 London World Championships

Thanks to a last-minute rush Japan walked away from the London World Championships with a passable haul. The JAAF judges performance in terms of medals and top 8 finishes. Up to Saturday, only one Japanese athlete had met either, 18-year-old sprinter Abdul Hakim Sani Brown finishing 7th in the men's 200 m final as the first Japanese man to make a 200 m final at Worlds since 2003. Three other Japanese athletes had scored top 10 placings, Yuki Kawauchi and Kentaro Nakamoto in the men's marathon and Ayuko Suzuki in the women's 10000 m, but under the JAAF's criteria these were not viewed as success.


Saturday's men's 4x100 m final brought the first Japanese medal of the Championships, with Japan following up on its Rio Olympics silver with a bronze, its first-ever Worlds medal in the discipline. Sunday morning brought Japan's best-ever showing in the men's 50 km race walk, Rio bronze medalist Hirooki Arai moving up to silver, Kai Kobayashi taking bronze wit…

London World Championships - Day Nine Japanese Results

Following up on its silver medal at the Rio Olympics, the Japanese men's 4x100 m relay squad delivered the first Japanese medal of the London World Championships as it took bronze behind hosts Great Britain and U.S.A. Swapping in alternate Kenji Fujimitsu for ailing anchor Aska Cambridge in the final, the team featured only two starting members of the Rio lineup. Lead runner Shuhei Tada, a student at Kwansei Gakuin University who burst onto the scene in May, again proved himself the best new development in Japanese men's sprinting with a fast start. Rio members Shota Iizuka and Yoshihide Kiryu did their bits on second and third to keep Japan even with Jamaica in 3rd before Fujimitsu delivered the goods.

With bronze at the Beijing Olympics and silver in Rio last year it was Japan's first-ever World Championships men's 4x100 m relay medal. At age Fujimitsu may not make it to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but with Cambridge, 200 m finalist Abdul Hakim Sani Brown and Rio team …