Oct. 16 Shimantogawa Extremely Canceled As a consequence of Pandemic’s Results on Growing old Native Inhabitants

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Scheduled to occur Oct. 16 for the primary time in three years, the twenty eighth Shimantogawa Ultramarathon has been abruptly canceled. Shimanto mayor Masahiro Nakahira, chairperson of the occasion’s organizing committee, introduced the choice at a press convention. The mayor cited the problem in finding volunteers because of the ongoing pandemic scenario within the metropolis and space, and considerations that the native medical system might be overwhelmed. Whether or not the race will go forward subsequent yr stays undetermined.

Purposes for the race have been open till July 29. 1506 folks paid to enroll in the 1800 slots accessible within the 100 km division, with the 60 km division attracting 524 paid entrants out of a most discipline dimension of 600. Mayor Nakahira commented, “Prior to now we have all the time had extra candidates than accessible slots, and there have been even years the place the variety of candidates was triple the sector most discipline dimension. That is one impression of the coronavirus pandemic.” The variety of volunteers was additionally decrease than anticipated. 1800 candidates have been anticipated, however solely 1300 folks utilized to volunteer.

The race’s course alongside the Shimanto River passes by mountainous areas the place the results of depopulation and the growing old of those that stay are evident. “We heard from a number of villages this month that mentioned they’re afraid of the coronavirus or are just too previous to volunteer anymore,” mentioned Mayor Nakahira. “We would have nonetheless been in a position to do one thing by taking part in round with the course format, however we thought it was essential to decide as early as attainable.”

The occasion’s future is at present a clean web page in its historical past e book. The organizing committee is exploring methods to maintain the race going by re-examining its recruitment and utilization of volunteers, however the wrestle to get sufficient volunteers has been a difficulty for years and the organizers are mentioned to be contemplating ending the race as one choice. “The Shimantogawa Ultramarathon is a very fashionable occasion, and locals within the mountains all the time end up to cheer the runners on,” mentioned Mayor Nakahira. “It is my hope that we’ll have the ability to give you choices.”

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translated by Brett Larner

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