Sendai man spits his way to cherry pit victory

YAMAGATA (Kyodo) The annual cherry pit-spitting competition in Higashine, Yamagata Prefecture, was won this year with a championship blast of 15.95 meters.

The winner, Shinya Kikuchi of Sendai, received 2 kg of sato-nishiki cherries, one of the most expensive varieties, as his prize.

About 1,000 people turned out Sunday to participate in the contest.

“I’m quite happy because children enjoyed” seeing the competition, Kikuchi, 41, said.

Higashine, the nation’s top cherry production center, is where the sato-nishiki brand was developed.