Due to be held the same day as voting in the upcoming election for the House of Representatives, runners at the Kanazawa Marathon
can expect to be stopped at over 20 intersections on the course in order to allow voters on their way to the polls to pass without interference.
Scheduled to be held Oct. 31 after last year’s race was canceled, the Kanazawa Marathon will take place
while voting polls for the House of Representatives election are open. On race day, road closures for the marathon will be in place for up to 6 hours, but the locations of 14 polling stations on the course mean that voters will need to be able to cross through intersections. 50,000 voters are expected to use these locations, and while city officials are calling for people to utilize early voting or polling stations not affected by road closures then have made the decision to place security personnel at 21 intersections to stop runners when necessary.
The Kanazawa Marathon already has this policy in place at two intersections near popular tourist sites such as the Kenrokuen garden, but the decision in relation to the election represents a significant expansion. At a press conference on Oct. 13 Kanazawa mayor Yukiyoshi Yamano commented, “We would like to give runners who are planning to chase time goals advance notice and ask for their understanding. We will seek the opinions of both runners and local citizens regarding the marathon this year and consider their input in shaping our future policies regarding these measures.”
Translator’s note: In its last running in 2019 the Kanazawa Marathon had 13,756 finishers, with winning times of 2:11:36 for men by Fumihiro Maruyama and 2:34:52 for women by Kaori Yoshida, both new course records.
translated by Brett Larner