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The Nara Prefectural Track and Field Association held a press conference Nov. 13 at the head offices of the Nara Newspapers Group to announce that, with the support of Rikuren director Yohei Kono, it will stage a new marathon beginning in 2010 as part of the celebrations for the 1300th anniversary of Nara's status as the ancient capital of Japan.
The Nara Marathon aims both to generate increased involvement in sports within Nara Prefecture and to attract the interest of those outside the prefecture in Nara's 1300 years of history. Nara T&F director Masahiro Morioka said that a race committee was in the process of being assembled and that it would hold its first meeting by the end of the year with the purpose of making preliminary decisions on the course and other basic organizational elements.