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Cold feet: Thousands of runners turn out for Yokota’s annual Frostbite road races

Children compete in the 38th annual Yokota Striders Frostbite Road Race at Yokota Air Base, Japan, Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019.

THERON GODBOLD/STARS AND STRIPES

By THERON GODBOLD | STARS AND STRIPES Published: January 20, 2019

YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan — About 12,000 athletes of all ages recently braved the cold to run their hearts out at the home of U.S. Forces Japan in western Tokyo.

The 38th annual Frostbite Road Race — hosted Sunday by the Yokota Striders running club — consists of a half-marathon, 5K, 2K kids and 2K family races. The open-base event, which also attracts thousands of spectators who cheer on the runners, is ranked among the top 100 road races in Japan, according to Yokota’s 374th Airlift Wing.

Many were all smiles during the event, and some ran wearing costumes such as Japanese superhero Anpanman.

Volunteer Paul “Tank” Ticas, president of the Yokota chapter of the Green Knights military motorcycle club, said it was great to see such enthusiasm from the athletes.

“We definitely feel that the Japanese love seeing Americans, they embrace American culture, and seeing Harley Davidsons and American bikers gets them pumped and excited,” he said.

godbold.theron@stripes.com

A couple of kids run hard during the 38th annual Yokota Striders Frostbite Road Race at Yokota Air Base, Japan, Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019.
THERON GODBOLD/STARS AND STRIPES

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