Tokyo's 1964 Legacy Yoyogi National Stadium Hosts Another Top International Sports Event Japan Team Wins Gold Medal with Passionate Fans

Tokyo hosted the latest in a long list of major international sporting events this week when the ISU World Team Trophy took place at iconic Yoyogi National Stadium from Apr. 19 to 22. The event, a grand prix competition between the six best national figure skating teams, showcased the organisational expertise and strong passion for international sport that Tokyo 2020 plans to leverage in bringing the Olympic and Paralympic Games back to Japan's capital. The Japan team sealed the gold medal through their mesmerising performances, allowing the fully-packed audience to leave the stadium with total satisfaction.

Japan's team captain Daisuke Takahashi said: "Figure Skating is very popular in Japan, and when tournaments are held in Tokyo a great number of people always show up. The international athletes often tell me how much they enjoy performing in front of such an enthusiastic crowd, with the atmosphere resembling a rock concert. I really enjoy performing at Yoyogi National Stadium since you could feel the excitement of the highly energetic fans. It will be great if the Olympics come to Tokyo again, as I am positive that the people of Tokyo and Japan will be extremely enthusiastic to host such a wonderful event."

Yoyogi National Stadium, with its dramatically undulating roofline, created an international sensation during the Tokyo 1964 Games and creates a remarkably fresh impression to this day. After hosting Swimming, Diving and Basketball competitions for the 1964 Games, the timelessly futuristic venue has held countless international competitions in figure skating, ice hockey, basketball and gymnastics, as well as staging musical extravaganzas and major international conferences.

Yoyogi National Stadium's meticulous preservation and continued active service underpin the long-standing dream to draw on the enduring 1964 legacy and host the Olympic and Paralympic Games once again in Tokyo in 2020. The venue, which symbolises the technical excellence for which Japan is especially famous, will once again create an ideal platform for athletes and spectators at the Games.

USA figure skater Adam Rippon said: "As an athlete, I really enjoy performing and competing here in Japan. The audience is really knowledgeable of what their watching and very appreciative of all the work that goes in behind the scenes before we get to the competition. The appreciation I think is unmatched than any other part of the world and I know I can speak on the behalf of a lot of the athletes and especially my American teammates. When we come to a competition in Japan, we always expect a really great well-organised event, and as athletes we are so well taken care of that it's always such a pleasure to come here to Japan. Tokyo is an amazing city. The excitement, the energy, Tokyo is one of the best cities in the world. We definitely felt like the audience was helping us and cheering us on, and I can only imagine how the excitement will be during an Olympic event."

The stadium, which is due to host Handball and Wheelchair Rugby, is situated in the Heritage Zone. Along with the Tokyo Bay Zone, it is one of the two zones of the Tokyo 2020 Games' plan. This is where all but three of the Games' events are scheduled to be staged within just an 8 km radius of the Olympic Village. Tokyo 2020 will bring Olympism to the very heart of Tokyo's dynamic yet safe and highly interconnected urban environment.

After a year's absence, the ISU World Team Trophy returned to Japan for the 2012 edition, demonstrating the nation's enthusiasm for sport and unmatched ability to host highly successful international events. ISU World Team Trophy comprises teams of eight skaters: two male and two female single skaters, one skating pair and one ice dancing couple. This year's Trophy featured teams from Canada, France, Italy, Japan, Russia and the USA.

Tokyo 2020 CEO Masato Mizuno said: "Yoyogi National Stadium is a perfect example of our commitment to building on the 1964 legacy. After nearly a half-century, it is still a fabulous venue combining traditional Japanese design with visionary innovation. We have been deeply inspired by the enduring legacy of Tokyo 1964 in putting together a compelling plan for Tokyo 2020."

The competition featured many of the world's leading figure skaters, including Canadian Patrick Chan, the 2012 ISU World Figure Skating Men's Champion, and American Carolina Kostner, the 2012 ISU World Figure Skating Women's Champion. Vancouver 2010 Games bronze medallist Daisuke Takahashi headlined the Japan squad.
Image of the Yoyogi National Stadium

Yoyogi National Stadium

Daisuke Takahashi

Japan's team captain Daisuke Takahashi

Adam Rippon

USA figure skater Adam Rippon