HYOGO (TR) – Perhaps he was not so lucky after all.
A person has taken to Twitter to claim that Yuki Yamamoto, the winner of the the annual “Lucky Man” footrace held early Thursday in Kobe, was engaged in an extra-marital affair.
Yamamoto, a 22-year-old firefighter from Fukuyama City, Hiroshima Prefecture, scampered to victory after the gates at Nishinomiya Shrine swung open to start the 230-meter race. “I’m very happy,” Yamamoto said coming in first.
Yet that feeling might not have lasted for very long: It appears his sudden fame exposed to his girlfriend that he is married.
After the race ended, the account (@eikICyIEKRDZYYX) provided screen shots of text messages on the smartphone application Line between a person named Yuki Yamamoto and a woman, purportedly his girlfriend. Based on the messages, Yamamoto told her that he was single, 24 years old and living in Tokyo.
“I’m sorry,” he writes repeatedly. “Can I talk to you on the phone?” He also asks to meet her, a request she declines.
The race took place at 6:00 a.m. The time stamps on the text messages start about four and a half hours later. Later, the account also uploaded a screen shot showing that his account deleted the messages while referring to him as a “demon.”
The shrine, which is dedicated to the Ebisu god of business prosperity, has hosted the race annually for centuries. The top three finishers of this year’s field of 107 participants — selected via lottery — are each deemed a “lucky man.”
Last summer, Fukuyama was devastated by torrential rains that brought widespread flooding and mudslides. During his speech, Yamamoto said he wanted his victory to boost the spirits of the city’s citizens “even just a little bit.”
However, it now seems that Yamamoto might be the one needing some encouragement.