What stands in the way when you recommend keirin to someone? Perhaps, it’d be the negative image of gambling. In fact, keirin is a gamble and it’s no good getting into it too much. On the other hand, however, the revenues raised by the publicly managed gamble sports are contributed to social welfare, and keirin in particular, has a role in supporting cycling sports.

In this chapter, we’re going to explain the basics of ‘what’s publicly managed gamble sports?’, then move on to ‘Things that keirin supports’ and ‘The relationship between keirin and cycling sports’. If you read this, your standpoint may be altered.

What is Japan Institute of KEIRIN? / All about “KEIRIN” series 5

What’s publicly managed gamble sports?


Publicly managed gamble sports consist of five sports – National Horse Racing, Regional Horse Racing, Keirin, Speedboat Race, and Auto Race (Japanese flat track motorcycle race). It’s also called ‘public gamble’ or ‘public pool’.

Publicly managed gamble sports are a gamble which is directed by the government-owned corporations (e.g., Japan Racing Association for National Horse Racing) or the regional governments. It started at the time of postwar reconstruction and had a role to play to increase financial resources in those days.


Gambling tends to discourage working morale or cause financial troubles, so it’s prohibited by law. However, one of the exceptional gambles is the publicly managed gamble sports. It is legally approved on condition that any possible obstacles be discarded in order to achieve specific purposes. In other words, publicly managed gamble sports are, within limits, approved as a healthy entertainment. ‘Reference: Publicly Managed gamble sports and the regional governments in Japan, Publicly Managed gamble sports and the regional governments in Japan’ (PDF))

In the publicly managed gamble sports, the sum of all the expenses withdrawn for the payoffs, the prize money, and the cost of personnel, becomes the independent income for the organiser. In other words, the revenue is returned to the regional government as a financial resource. Hence, it’s a gamble yet permitted under the law (Reference; Kotobank)

In addition, the publicly managed gamble sports are not only for the regional financial resources but also for contributing to society.

Keirin’s contribution to society

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