Daichi Hayakawa, 12, won The 4th Japan Times Spelling Bee on Saturday, booking a place at the National Spelling Bee to be held in Washington this spring by correctly spelling "metamorphosis."

"Of course I feel happy because I won and can go to America," said Hayakawa, a student at Katoh Elementary School in the city of Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture.

This year's event at headquarters of The Japan Times in Tokyo involved 42 students from third-graders through age 14 from schools nationwide, many of whom go to international or U.S. schools.