Five hundred enthusiastic spectators gathered on Saturday at one of Japan’s few public exhibition venues in Shizuoka Prefecture to watch the men’s road cycling race.
“Tokyo was chosen to host the Olympics. Even though the Games have been delayed for a year and are being held under very difficult circumstances without spectators, as a Japanese I am proud that the Games are going on, ”Shizuoka resident and local spectator Joji Matsubara told CNN. .
Matsubara, who said he was lucky enough to get a ticket to the public screening event, out of 2,000 other contestants, said he was looking forward to watching the road race.
The race sees athletes start at Musashinonomori Park in Tokyo, pass through Kanagawa and Yamanashi prefectures, and make their way to the finish line at Fuji International Speedway in Oyama in Shizuoka Prefecture, about 2 hours from Tokyo.
Fuji Speedway allows 10,000 ticket holders to watch the final stop of the road race in a venue that can typically accommodate over 20,000 people.
The Oyama City Public Display Site allows spectators to watch the road cycling race on a screen, enjoy a small climbing wall and is one of the few events open to the public in Japan. .
Currently, spectators will be able to attend less than 12% of Olympic venues during the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games.
Only five of the 42 Olympic venues in Japan will be open to fans. Tokyo is home to 25 of the sites, with the rest spread across seven prefectures.
Tokyo venues and four prefectures – Chiba, Kanagawa, Saitama and Fukushima – will not have spectators at Olympic competition venues.
Miyagi, Ibaraki and Shizuoka prefectures with a total of five venues can be filled to 50% of their capacity with a maximum of 10,000 spectators.
In Shizuoka Prefecture, only three venues organize public exhibition venues for road cycling race.
“We had wanted to invite more people to see Shizuoka and see the road race, but we had to turn down many candidates due to the pandemic and keep this event very local,” said Rie Watanabe, an Oyama official in Shizuoka Prefecture. CNN.
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