Date: March 20th Friday (National holiday), 2009.
No Kanto track meets are scheduled; what a great opportunity for Kanto international school kids to have a festive competition experience outside the narrow confines of Kanto Track and Field meets.
applications close Jan. 31, 2009
An ekiden is a relay, so you must link up with a team; if you miss the deadline, come anyway. You might find some foreigners who need another runner. Read a great article about ekidens.
a blogger`s report from 2008 Tamako Ekiden another blogger`s report from 2008 Tamako Ekiden
Most of the pictures below are much larger. Drag them to another window to see large size.
Essential details - applications close Jan. 31, 2009; no late or on-site registration. Pamphlets are available at the Higashi Yamato city hall and have handy postal money order form. City Hall (5th floor) or the city sports complex near Ito Yokado and closer to the Tama Josui eki (where the Seibu Haijima Line and the Tama Monorail intersect).
9:00am : 4 members: 2 laps, total distance 11.892 Km. Junior high and open teams - In 2009 there were 38 boys/mixed junior high teams, 19 girls junior high teams, and 27 open teams. In 2009 the pattern was Leg One 2525m, Leg Two 3421m, Leg Three 2525m, Leg Four 3,421m. Legs two and four also had more vertical climb and must jog 2500m from the start line to the far exchange zone. If the start in 2010 is moved because construction is finished, the race legs might be more balanced.
10:15 am 4 members: 4 laps of 5,946 meters, total distance 23.744 Km. Open teams, high school teams, mixed gender teams - In 2009 there were 143 male/mixed open teams, 8 female open teams, 7 high school boys and 2 high school girls teams. The CAJ HS boys team beat the mercy rule and finished mid-pack.
Don`t worry if your team is slow, the path is well lighted at night (just kidding - they have a mercy rule- the 4th runner must turn back to the finish line by 11:45. Translated, that means if your team is slower than 12k per hour (7.5 miles/hour), the 4th runners will start en masse before the 3rd runner finishes. In 2009 there were many teams in this situation.)
Take the train to Seibu Yamato eki (one stop before end of line at Seibu Yuenchi amusement park) - there is no parking. Properly registered teams will receive at the site: numbers (which must be worn) and the sash [TASUKI] which must be worn. Teams may keep the numbers but not the sashes. Turn the sashes back in.
Course, starts near base of dam, and uses the bicycle path to go up to the city planetarium and back. The 2009 race was held before dam renovation was completed, so possibly the 2010 race will start in a the newly renovated park area.
pamphlet says: 2-167-13 Sakuragaoka, Higashi Yamatoshi, Tokyo 207-0022 (sports center) 042-566-3531 email@example.com
website says: 3-930 Chuo, Higashi Yamato-shi, Tokyo, 207-8585 (city hall) 042-566-3531 fax 042-566-3532
The city of HigashiYamato - Tamako Ekiden website in Japanese.
Two lap race: Junior high school teams cost 2,000 yen per 4-some Four lap race: 8,000 yen per 4-some
Reported by Bruce Carrick; updated March 27, 2009
fyi - another source of information about the many running opportunities in Japan: Handy Tokyo running calendar by Namban running club http://www.namban.org/index.php/calendar/