Hidekichi Miyazaki
Hidekichi Miyazaki
Birth: 22 September 1910
Japan
Death: 23 January 2019
Kyoto City, Kyoto, Japan
Age: 108 years, 123 days
Country: JapanJPN
Centenarian

Hidekichi Miyazaki (22 September 1910 – 23 January 2019) was a Japanese centenarian masters athlete, affectionally nicknamed "Golden Bolt", a name play on Usain Bolt. He was a former official holder of the world record in the M100 100 metres. On September 23, 2015, the day after his 105th birthday, he became the second person to compete in the 105 year age division following Pole Stanisław Kowalski  who competed earlier in the year on June 28.

Event

The event held in Kyoto was held in commemoration of "Respect for the Aged Day." With official timing and a field of younger competitors in their eighties, Miyazaki completed the race in 42.22, slower than the 34.50 recorded by Kowalski. Miyazaki only took up the sport in his nineties. "I'm still a beginner, you know. 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." Following his race he posed in the Lightning Bolt stance, made famous by Usain Bolt. "I will say this: I'm proud of my health. 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. It's all about willpower. You have to keep going."

Former title holder

Prior to 2015, the title of "World's oldest athlete" was held by American John Whittemore, who did throwing events at age 104 and 10 months in Santa Barbara in 2004. The oldest female athlete was Australian Ruth Frith, mother of Olympian Helen Frith, who was throwing all implements of the throws pentathlon at age 101.

Donald Pellmann - new recordholder

Five years earlier, October 3, 2010, on the same track, Miyazaki set the record in the M100 division at 29.83, which is the mark ratified by World Masters Athletics, the world governing body for athletics over age 35. Just three days before his 105-year race, American Donald Pellmann surpassed Miyazaki's M100 record, running 26.99 in a race in San Diego. In that meet, Pellmann also became the first centenarian to record a successful long jump and high jump. Pellmann also attempted a pole vault.

Death

Hidekichi Miyazaki died in Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan, on 23 January 2019 at the age of 108.

References

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