The last 3 years’ All Japan Koi Show have seen a trend start to set, for in each of 2014, 2015 and 2016, the Koi that had taken second place the previous year stepped up to become Grand Champion, Princesses who would be crowned Queens of the Koi world.

To win a major prize one year, only to return the following year, bigger and better, and take the biggest prize in Nishikigoi is an amazing feat, an achievement by both the Koi and of course the breeder or farm who has taken care of her during that 12 month period.

The Koi that comes 2nd to the Grand Champion, is now named ‘Jumbo Champion’ in the official translations, a name that causes some confusion as there are 2 other ‘jumbo’ prizes awarded.  I can’t help think that a Koi that has come 2nd at the All Japan Koi Show could have a rather grander title than ‘Jumbo Champion’, after all, the overall winner of the next size grouping down is termed ‘Superior Champion’, something rather more fitting perhaps.

Anyway, lets take a look at those 3 Koi which have elevated themselves from ‘Jumbo’ to ‘Grand’ Champion.

2014 All Japan Grand Champion

2014 All Japan Grand Champion

In 2013 Momotaro’s ‘Lion Queen’ was 92cm in length.  She was up against the truly amazing ‘M-Legend’ Kohaku which dwarfed her at 98cm.

In 2014 she returned to compete for the title again, this time a massive 99cm in length.


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The 2014 Grand Champion ballot required 3 rounds of voting with Lion Queen taking the GC title by 44 votes to 37 votes in a head to head with the Kohaku pictured below.

2015 All Japan Grand Champion

2015 All Japan Grand Champion

In 2013 this Kohaku has been awarded the 90bu Kokugyo prize, as detailed above, in 2014 she was runner up to Lion Queen.

Raised at Narita Koi Farm she returned at a length of 94cm and with greater volume.

The Koi would end up going head to head with the smaller 87cm Dainichi Toyota bred Kohaku pictured below, a vote which she won by 43 votes to 37 votes to become Grand Champion of the 2015 All Japan Koi Show.

2016 All Japan Grand Champion

2016 All Japan Grand Champion

This Kohaku created a real stir at the 2015 All Japan Koi Show, many fell in love with her, myself included.  Cared for by Hiroshi Mano at Dainichi Toyota, many had seen her swimming in a pond on the farm when visiting, although prior to the show the only confirmation of size was that she was ‘over 90cm’.  She was in fact 94cm, the same size as the Koi that had defeated her the previous year.

In 2015 she would take the Grand Champion prize by 43 votes to 38 votes, defeating the Sakai Fish Farm bred, and Narita Koi Farm grown, Kohaku below.


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2016 Jumbo Champion, Sakai Fish Farm, 92cm

2016 Jumbo Champion, Sakai Fish Farm, 92cm

What size will she be?  What will her condition be?  In a few weeks we will know those answers, and we will also see her swim side by side other challengers to become the ‘queen’ of 2017.


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