tokyo 2020 olympics

Tokyo Olympic organizers try to allay Sapporo test event concerns

11 Comments
By Chris Gallagher

Tokyo Olympic organizers acknowledged on Tuesday that Sapporo residents were concerned about a marathon test event being held in the northern Japanese city amid a rise in COVID-19 cases and said they were implementing measures to hold the event safely.

The marathon test event - actually a half-marathon and a 10K race - will be held on Tuesday starting from Sapporo's Odori park.

Yasuo Mori, Tokyo 2020's deputy executive director of the Games operations bureau, addressed the concerns amid a record rise in coronavirus infections in the city.

"We are fully aware (Sapporo) residents feel uneasy with the current situation, and we are carrying out various steps as we want to prepare for an event where people can feel even a little bit more at ease," Mori told a news conference.

In Hokkaido, new daily cases hit a record 326 on Sunday, public broadcaster NHK reported. The prefecture plans to call for stronger anti-virus measures in Sapporo including shorter restaurant hours and for more people to work from home.

The test event was scaled down greatly due to the coronavirus situation with only 93 runners planning to take part in the half marathon. General entry for 2,500 runners was cancelled.

Mori also spoke about the "stringent measures" put in place for testing the six foreign athletes who have entered the country for the event, with daily screenings required and no public transportation allowed.

The Olympic marathon and race walk events are scheduled to be held from Aug 5 to 8 in Sapporo.

They were originally planned to take place in Tokyo but the International Olympic Committee (IOC) surprised Games organizers in October 2019 by announcing the events would be moved to Sapporo to avoid the worst of Tokyo’s summer heat.

The decision did not go down well with Tokyo organizers, who had done extensive planning for the events, including a series of cooling measures for the athletes, nor with the Tokyo governor, who reluctantly consented to the move.

The pandemic, however, has eclipsed worries about the heat.

Tokyo and three other areas are under a state of emergency as the authorities try to halt a resurgence in coronavirus cases with less than three months before the Games open.

© Thomson Reuters 2021.

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

11 Comments
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"We are fully aware (Sapporo) residents feel uneasy with the current situation, and we are carrying out various steps as we want to prepare for an event where people can feel even a little bit more at ease,

Resident can say whatever they want, that event will be carry on,

5 ( +6 / -1 )

""We are fully aware (Sapporo) residents feel uneasy with the current situation...." but who cares? (⌒▽⌒)

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Words that never seem to come from Japanese bureaucracy:

- “We are fully aware...”

3 ( +4 / -1 )

“We are fully aware residents feel uneasy with the situation, and we are carrying ...

... on anyway.*

*Perhaps this is what Yasuo Mori, Tokyo 2020's dep. exec. dir. of “The Games” was really thinking.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is really unbelievable event. More variant virus spread all over. Olympics must be cancelled. JOC is really incompetent about new variant.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

So the purpose of the event was to show it could be held properly with thousands of participants, and for that purpose they reduced it to less than 100? at some point people should realize when something is no longer what it was supposed to be.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Mori also spoke about the "stringent measures" put in place for testing the six foreign athletes who have entered the country for the event, with daily screenings required and no public transportation allowed.

"stringent measures"?

Did they undergo a 14-day quarantine period after entering Japan to be sure that they do not have Covid-19? No, like the divers at the FINA event including at least one who has Covid-19, they did not.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

And yet the circus continues....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Stringent measures. The Indian cricket despite keeping the participants in a highly controlled bubble has just been canceled because the virus still got in. Japanese stringent measures are not even remotely close to that bubble in either design or enforcement. Welcome to the super spreading Olympic events

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Tested diving, tested volley ball, and now testing running events?

What is with all the stupid testing?

I thought the athletes were suppose arrive a day or two before their events, be in bubbles, and sent back a day or two afterwards?

Why are all these athletes here early with their entourages?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Once again the govt holds its people with utter contempt! I have witnessed this phenomenon now for over 30yrs NON-stop!

But this contempt for people during covid......... is evil!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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