Early reports indicate that golf companies with interests in Japan came through last week’s devastating earthquake and tsunami, but there were some frightening moments.
“Miura, being so far west of the quake area, we’re not aware of any effects,” said Adam Barr, president of Muira Golf, which has its North American headquarters in Vancouver.
Its base in Japan is located near the city of Himeji. “Miura’s actual factory is a 25-minute train ride away from Himeji in a little suburb called Amaji,” said Barr. “To give you some idea, the bullet train ride from Tokyo station to Himeji takes about two-and-a-half hours,” added Barr.
Down in Tokyo, Mike Kelly, the former general manager for Nike Golf Canada, was visiting on business.
“I was in a meeting at Nike Golf, which is on the 13th floor,” he recalled.
“We had had an earthquake the day before that was sizable, but lasted only a few seconds, like those I used to feel in (Southern California) when I worked in Carlsbad,” said Kelly, now Nike’s global marketing director. “This however lasted for over five minutes and had many different gears.
“The building must have moved five to six feet from the centre of my body if I was standing still. I saw out the window across the street at the building going in the opposite direction,” he recalled.
“I kept asking if we should evacuate, run or duck. I hit the floor several times under the table as that was what I was trained to do. Not one shirt, golf club or sample fell off the wall in the room. It was scary and amazing all at once. We evacuated minutes after it stopped, and the rest you have seen on TV,” said Kelly.
Watch GNN for more developments as they relate to golf out of Japan.