interview: Shunsuke Okunomiya

The Mihara Hakuryuko race 2011 was held on September 18th. I interviewed Shunsuke Okunomiya, race advisor, and Toru Higashi, course director, about one week later.

[interview to Shunsuke Okunomiya]

About one week has passed after a race. How do you feel or what do you think now?
I'm relieved that we had a race without no big troubles nor accidents. I think that is thanks to a local Daiwa-Soyukai, of course including Higashi-san. and Hongo athlete club. Although it is difficult for me about distance-wise [to do back and forth between Hiroshima and Kanto-area where he lives], I wish that I could do more prior arrangements and preparations with them.

奥宮さんが東さんにこの大会のお話をされたのは2010年9月下旬の菅平の大会、開催決定が決まったのは2011年6月頃, 大会開催に向けて本格的に動き出したのは2010年12月頃だったと先日のインタビューで伺いました。あの時から大会の日まで、準備期間は短かったと思います。準備期間で印象に残っていることは何ですか?
今回、準備期間が少し短かったと思います。どこで大会をやるのか? を含めて、コースの選定に時間がかかりました。コースの選定で印象に残っているのは、広島のトレイルはあちこちにありますが、せっかく整備したトレイルがそのまま手付かずで荒れてしまっている箇所が多いことです。瀬戸内海が見えるトレイルが魅力的でした。

You told me at a previous interview that you told Higashi-san about this race at Sugadaira race at the late September 2010, a race has been decided to be held, it was around June 2011, and a race committee has "actually" started to be on a move December 2010. I believe that you didn't have much time to do everything until the day of a race. What would you remember most during your preparation?
I admit that a preparation period was short. Including a selection of area, we took more time to select courses. During our preparation, I noticed that there are many trails in Hiroshima, but most of them are left without keeping good care of them. I remember trails where you can see the Seto Inland Sea, which are attractive.


What were differences from races or events which you've participated or been invited as a guest?
This race was held in the area
[which is Hiroshima]
where trail running is not well-known very much. I thought that
some activities make people got known about trail running is required.


What kind of advantages you had out of races or events which you've participated before?
I know that many of those who participate in a race are coming for pleasure,
not for their own victories nor defeating others. So I was be able to think something for what they are looking for this race. I focused on a pre-event,
stretch lessons, cheering up them during a race on a course, etc.


Though you have a private connection with Hiroshima, did you feel some differences with participants between Kanto area or other areas and ones in Hiroshima?
In an area where people get familiar with trail running, they know what they have to do by themselves such as water and food should be preparation by themselves. I think that there are many participants had doing a road race [like marathon] and relied on committee. We committee had expectations of such kind of needs, but there were some aspects which
were not satisfied with, so I think we need
improvements for them.

エイドポイントでの補給に何を出しているか? 案内標識はどうしているか? 走ること以外にどのような準備をしているか? という点です。

When yout participate in other races as one of athletes from now on, what would you care about at those races? For example,
about a management, a system of organization etc.
What is served at aid points?
How directional sign is made or set?
What kind of preparations have made besides for running? Those kinds of things.


There are some tough comments at a race portal site where people gather comments.
What would you think of their opinions and how would you like to do for the next race?
Points where we can improve, we do so for making a better race.


また、来年挑戦しようと考えている方は裏山で遊んだ子供の頃のようなワクワクドキドキを胸に、トレランを思いっきり楽しもう! という気持ちで参加して頂きたいと思います。(事前の準備は忘れずに!)

来年、また広島でお会いできることを楽しみにしています! よろしくお願いします!

Please give a message to people who have participated in the first race and those who consider a participation to the second race.
Trails of the Mihara Hakuryuko trail race is a trail at small mountains rather than trails of serious mountains. I think that you got to know that there were wonderful trails near you [in Hiroshima]. Hope you would enjoy trail running in trails which are close to you.

To those who are thinking of participate in a race next year, come and join us with much expectations just like when you were little and run around in a yard or mountain. (But with well preparations!)

I am looking forward to seeing you all in Hiroshima next year.
Thank you for your consideration!

It will be continued to Toru Higashi's interview.

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