‘Golden Bolt’ Hidekichi Miyazaki DID NOT set M105 WR in the 100

It's a great pose, Hidekichi, but not M105 record.

It’s a great pose, Hidekichi, but not M105 record.

Hidekichi Miyazaki, the “Golden Bolt” of masters track, lost his M100 100-meter world record Sunday to Don Pellmann but showed his fitness Wednesday by running the race in 42.22 a day after his birthday, according to an explosion of media reports. But all those reports are wrong in one respect. Hidekichi isn’t the fastest 105-year-old sprinter. That title belongs to Poland’s Stanislaw Kowalski, who ran the 100 in 34.50 three months ago. All hail Hidekichi for his wonderful effort, but he still has 8 seconds to go. He says he’ll compete at Japan’s masters nationals next month. Guinness World Records are nice, but WMA maintains the official records. Time for the M105 age group to be added to records site.

Golden Bolt looks the part at well-documented race at age 105. But he's 8 seconds short of WR.

Golden Bolt looks the part at well-publicized Kyoto race a day after turning 105.

Here’s an Agence France-Presse report on HM’s run:

A fleet-footed Japanese centenarian raced into the Guinness World Records reference book on Wednesday and declared himself a “medical marvel” as he continues to stalk sprint king Usain Bolt.

Hidekichi Miyazaki, dubbed “Golden Bolt” after the fastest man on the planet, clocked 42.22 seconds in Kyoto to set a 100 metres world record in the over-105 age category — one for which no mark previously existed — a day after reaching the milestone age.

“I’m not happy with the time,” the pint-sized Miyazaki told AFP in an interview after recovering his wind. “I started shedding tears during the race because I was going so slowly. Perhaps I’m getting old!”

Indeed, so leisurely was his pace that Bolt could have run his world record of 9.58 four times, or practically completed a 400 metres race — a fact not lost on Miyazaki.

“I’m still a beginner, you know,” he said, grinning from ear to ear. “I’ll have to train harder. Training was going splendidly, so I had set myself a target of 35 seconds. I can still go faster.”

“I will say this: I’m proud of my health,” added Miyazaki, the poster boy for Japan’s turbo-charged geriatrics in a country with one of the world’s highest life expectancies.

“The doctors gave me a medical examination a couple of days ago and I’m fit as a fiddle.

“My brain might not be the sharpest but physically I’m tip-top. I’ve never had any health problems. The doctors are amazed by me. I can definitely keep on running for another two or three years.”

Dressed in his trademark red, tight shorts hiked alarmingly high, Miyazaki got off to a wobbly start before finding a gentle rhythm and trotting across the finish line to loud cheers, greeted by his great-grandchildren carrying bouquets.

Cheekily, he celebrated by striking Bolt’s famous “lightning” pose before being presented with a certificate from Guinness officials.

– Dream race –

Asked about Bolt’s latest heroics at last month’s athletics world championships in Beijing, Miyazaki screwed up his nose and said with a chuckle: “He hasn’t raced me yet!”

The twinkle-toed Miyazaki, who holds the 100 metres world record for centenarians at 29.83 seconds, insisted there was still time for a dream race against the giant Jamaican.

“I would still love to compete against him,” said Miyazaki, who loses valuable seconds because he cannot hear the starter’s gun go off.

“Two or three years ago Bolt came to Japan and said he wanted to meet me. There was a call about it but I was out and he left without meeting me. I felt deeply sorry.”

Miyazaki, who was born in 1910 — the year Japan annexed Korea and when the Titanic was still being built — only took up running in his early 90s and prepares for races by taking a sneaky catnap.

He stands just 1.53 metres (five feet) tall and weighs in at 42 kilograms (92 pounds).

He trains religiously by popping a kilogram weight into a rucksack and going for daily walks around his local park in Kyoto, where he now lives.

“It’s all about willpower,” Miyazaki said of his need for speed. “You have to keep going.”

Japanese television crews jostled as Miyazaki, a native of tea-growing Shizuoka prefecture, arrived for his record tilt sporting dapper white slacks and a Panama hat.

Job done on the track, the Japanese iron man proved he was a dab hand at the shot put, tossing a best effort of 3.25 metres before calling it a day.

“I can’t think about retiring,” said Miyazaki, whose next competition is next month’s Japanese Masters Championships. “I have to continue for a few more years, to show my gratitude to my fans.”

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September 23, 2015

7 Responses

  1. Ken Stone - September 23, 2015

    Note via Twitter, which raises a lot of questions;


    Sep 23

    @KenStoneMedia Hi Ken, interesting blog. The record title is actually Oldest Pro Sprinter guinnessworldrecords.com/news/2015/9/wo…

  2. Jeff Davison - September 24, 2015

    Pro at 105 ? That sounds confusing.

  3. Dan - September 24, 2015

    Apologies Ken, that tweet was deleted almost immediately after sending. The record title is Oldest Competitive Sprinter: http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/news/2015/9/worlds-oldest-sprinter-wins-guinness-world-records-title-at-todays-race-398222

    If Mr Kowalski or his family wish to get in touch to dispute the record and/or submit proof of age, they are welcome to do so here on our website: http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/set-a-record

    Best wishes,
    Community Manager (GWR)

  4. Ken Stone - September 24, 2015

    Here is Stan’s Wikipedia page, with links to 34.50 at 105:

  5. Ken Stone - September 24, 2015

    Video of HM race:

  6. Ken Stone - September 26, 2015

    In response to a query, Kurt Kaschke of Germany, president of European Masters Athletics, sent me this note on Sept. 26:

    EMA has proved the [Polish M105] record and we accepted this record. The birth certificate was send to us and we accepted it.
    The documents were sent to Sandy Pashkin – it is her duty to put the record on the website of WMA ….
    The other question to the Japanese runner: did he send a birth certificate to WMA as well?

    Is a birth certificate valid, when the original certificate doesn’t exist anymore?

    What happens to all the “old athletes” who were born during the first or second world war, when documents were destroyed?
    How can we prove the date of birth when governments are not able to verify a birth just on the day or a day after? Or countries which never give out birth certificates – only when someone asks for and another person (fiend, uncle, son, …) verify it?
    Just only questions but you see it makes it difficult for all statistician in the world to find “the truth” …

  7. Derek Royce Gaskin - September 28, 2015

    LOL! at this point in their life we may have to cut them some slack. 105 years old, lived through some tough times and still competing. Truth? Wow, tough one to dig back for at this point.

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