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Pokemon Museum

The Quest For The Hiroshima Gyarados Battle Top Prize Medal (How Many Exist?)

No doubt if you have been collecting Japanese promos or Gyarados cards for a while you would have come across the beautiful Hiroshima XY-P Gyarados Promo from 2015.
Collectors with a keen eye will notice a subtle artistic call back to the iconic Sugimori artwork of the Shining Gyarados.
I first started to collect Gyarados cards seriously around 2015. Luck would have it that the amazing Hiroshima promo would release the same year. Here is the first image from my collection thread on E4 in October 2015.
(English XY60 Promo)
Even during 2015 it was a challenge finding the Hiroshima promo, with many being bought within a few hours of listing. Also, the prices were quite high especially for the time at around ¥5,000-¥6,000 each. For reference, I purchased the English versions (XY60) above for around $6AUD and the staff versions $12AUD each.
Reverse of the medal (Translation: "Top Prize")
After over 6 years of searching and with the help of another Gyarados collector we were finally able to get a glimpse of what the medal looked like and for the first time it came up for sale. Thanks to Azul who I linked above, I was able to purchase the medal from a store in Japan.
The Gyarados Battle event was held at Pokemon Centers in Japan. At the time of release there were a total of nine Pokemon Centers pictured above. According to official documentation the battles were held on the 22nd and 23rd of August. The first day was open for all ages and the next, elementary aged students and below.
Gyarados Battle Qualification Bracket
The first stage was qualification, shown above is the qualification bracket for one of the events. The next stage was lottery phase were you had to record at least 3 wins in qualification.
Lottery tickets for the Gyarados Battle:
Battle sheet from the event:
After winning and receiving your lottery you were able to advance to the final tournament stage where the TOP 3 contenders were awarded a gold Gyarados medal. Everyone who participated received the Hiroshima Pokemon Center stamped XY-P Gyarados promo card.
Below are some candid photos I found from different winners of the Gyarados Battle:
Since there were 9 Pokemon Centers in Japan in 2015 we can estimate the number of awarded Gyarados medals. There were two events over two days (22nd/23rd August) and three winners for each event (TOP 3). If medals were awarded for both events to both the open and elementart school age tournaments then it would be 6 medals per Pokemon Center. Giving a total of 54 medals.
- Shizzle