translated and edited by Brett Larner
With one month to go until the 2015 Hakone Ekiden, the Komazawa University sports department held a school rally for its 2011-2014 national champion ekiden team on Dec. 2 at the Komazawa Campus Memorial Hall. Comments from team staff and seniors:
Hiroaki Oyagi, head coach
Our second place finish last time was disappointing and frustrating. In our year of development since then we've looked at this as our season to be the best, and we're going in with the will to win no matter what. The athletes share the same feeling and have been deliberate in their approach over the last two years. This team has the ability to win the most important race, the one they absolutely must win. For the next month we will only be thinking about bringing home our first win in seven years as we make our final preparations, and we ask for your continued support.
Shogo Nakamura, senior, captain
Personally I haven't been able to run the way I wanted this year, but I was able to do something to help put the team in position to win the National University Ekiden. This will be my last Hakone Ekiden, so I will do everything I can to deliver my greatest performance and ask for your support in making that a reality.
Kenta Murayama, senior
I think Nakamura was really outstanding at last year's Hakone Ekiden, but inside, more than anyone else on the team I want to be the one whose running guarantees us the win. I hope you'll all help us get there.
Shoya Kurokawa, senior
This is my last year of university, so at the Hakone Ekiden I want to have the kind of run that will let me finish with a smile. Thank you for your support and please cheer for us.
Yoshihiro Nishizawa, senior
I want to do my absolute best in what I can do to make our Hakone Ekiden victory happen. Thank you all for your support.