Skip to main content

Kawauchi Announces Bid For Governor of Saitama (updated)

http://www.sponichi.co.jp/sports/news/2013/03/30/kiji/K20130330005505240.html

translated and edited by Brett Larner

Like his running, Saitama's civil servant runner is set to take his moniker to the next level. Having renewed his assignment as an office worker at Kasukabe High School for the fiscal year beginning Apr. 1, at a press conference on Mar. 29 Yuki Kawauchi, 26, announced that he will run for governor of Saitama in the upcoming prefectural elections. "I want to do my best for all the people of Saitama," Kawauchi told reporters.

Although he has been courted by leaders of various political parties throughout his rise to fame as Saitama's leading citizen over the last two years, Kawauchi will run as an independent. "Political parties serve a role for people who can't think for themselves or like to follow others, but that's not who I am," Kawauchi said.  "I think there are a lot of other people like me and I want to show them that they have a voice too."  Polling in Saitama following his announcement indicated widespread support for Kawauchi.  Among adults 20 or older, 81.4% of respondents said they favor his entry into the race.

Kawauchi's announcement has caused consternation among Japan's major political parties, not least of all for current governor Kiyoshi Ueda, 64, a former member of the Democratic Party of Japan who currently sits as an independent.  A longtime Kawauchi supporter, Ueda famously dubbed him 'the Rocky of the marathon world' following Kawauchi's breakthrough run at the 2011 Tokyo Marathon.  "He's got his way of doing things and we want to respect that, but we have to see if there isn't someplace that we can compromise," commented Ueda. "I have to have a one-on-one meeting with him to make sure he understands the election procedure."

If elected, Kawauchi says he intends to keep working in the Kasukabe H.S. office and to continue his marathon career.  He is a favorite to make the Japanese marathon team for August's Moscow World Championships.  "I'm going to do everything I can to meet my competitors on the starting line in the best condition possible!" Kawauchi said.  His next race is the Apr. 7 Satte Sakura 10 Mile Road Race in Satte, Saitama.

Update: This was an April Fools' Day joke.  Kawauchi is not running for governor of Saitama.  Yet.

Comments

Sam Grotewold said…
He is just the best.
patrick voo said…
agreed sam - yuki kawauchi rocks.
IvyChang said…
HaHaHa... I got fooled. Nice try.
patrick voo said…
nice one brett - still, if wesley korir can become a member of kenyan parliament, i wouldn't put it past kawauchi to take on yet another challenge!

Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi Wins 7th-Straight Okinoshima 50 km

Running the Okinoshima 50 km Ultramarathon on his late father's home island of Oki for the eighth year in a row, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) ran 2:52:55 to win it for the seventh straight time. Starting strong on the relatively flat first 10 km where he clocked 33:26, low-2:47 pace, Kawauchi slowed to just over 2:50 pace on the course's toughest hills between 10 and 30 km. A sub-2:50 was still in range at that point, but over the last 20 km he faded further to finish in the second-slowest of his Okinoshima wins.



The day before the race Kawauchi paced children in Okinoshima's kids' run. Following that he greeted participants and local supporters at an expo event where he was hailed onstage as the Boston Marathon winner. As per his usual routine, his next race will be the July 1 Gold Coast Marathon in Australia.

© 2018 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

Kipchirchir and Chebii Take on Three Gold Coast Winners

The men's race at Australia's Gold Coast Marathon is usually a Kenya-Japan head-to-head, Kenya taking six wins and Japan three in the last ten years. With not a single Ethiopian in the field for this year's 40th edition it looks set for it to happen yet again.

Sub-2:10 Kenyans Victor Kipchirchir, Douglas Chebii, Philip Sanga and the Japan-based Michael Githae will line up to take on three of the race's last four winners, 2017 champ Takuya Noguchi (Konica Minolta), 2015-16 winner and course record holder Kenneth Mungara (Kenya) and 2013 champ and perpetual top three placer Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't). Give the advantage to team Kenya in this bout, but as Noguchi and Kawauchi have proven Gold Coast is a race where Japanese men are legit contenders.

With the window for getting qualifying times for next year's MGC Race 2020 Olympic trials starting to close, the powers that be in Japan have taken note of the success of Noguchi and Kawauchi on the Gold Coast…

The Kawauchi Counter

Yuki Kawauchi's 2018 race results: Jan. 1: Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon, U.S.A.: 2:18:59 - 1st - CR
Jan. 14: Okukuma Road Race Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:03:28 - 7th
Jan. 21: Yashio Isshu Ekiden, Saitama: 1:01:03 - 1st - ran entire 20.0 km ekiden solo and beat all 103 teams of 6 runners each
Jan. 28: Okumusashi Ekiden First Stage (9.9 km), Saitama - 29:41 - 6th
Feb. 4: Saitama Ekiden Third Stage (12.1 km), Saitama - 36:54 - 4th
Feb. 11: Izumo Kunibiki Half Marathon, Shimane - cancelled due to heavy snow
Feb. 18: Kitakyushu Marathon, Fukuoka - 2:11:46 - 1st - CR
Feb. 25: Fukaya City Half Marathon, Saitama - 1:04:26 - 1st
Mar. 4: Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:04:49 - 12th
Mar. 11: Yoshinogawa Riverside Half Marathon, Tokushima - 1:05:50 - 1st - CR
Mar. 18: Wan Jin Shi Marathon, Taiwan - 2:14:12 - 1st
Mar. 24: Heisei Kokusai University Time Trials, Saitama
              5000 m Heat 4: 14:53.95 - 1st
              5000 m Heat 6: 14:36.58 - 2nd
           …