translated and edited by Brett Larner
Hakone Ekiden star Mekubo Mogusu (22) and Yamanashi Gakuin University head coach Masahito Ueda held a press conference at the school's Kofu campus on Mar. 13 to discuss the details of the car accident in which Mogusu was involved last month in his native Kenya. On Feb. 9 Mogusu was driving to a practice ground when he struck an oncoming vehicle head-on while pulling out to pass a parked car. Mogusu and fellow runners Daniel Gitau (Nihon Univ.) and Cosmas Ondiba (Yamanashi Gakuin Univ.) were uninjured, but Team Aidem coach Sho Kimura (26), riding in the front passenger seat, struck his head hard and fell unconscious. Kimura is now in a hospital in Wakayama Prefecture where he has regained consciousness and is able to respond to his name.
Mogusu is still suffering from the shock of the accident and is unable to train. Scheduled to join Team Aidem next month following his graduation, he apologized at the press conference, saying, "I can't even think about running right now. Coach Kimura recovering even a day earlier means more to me than that. I am truly sorry."