Popular fashion model Michibata Jessica (24) and British Formula One racing driver Jensen Button (29) are an item, according to today’s issue of the weekly magazine “Friday.” The magazine includes photos of the couple on a date last week at a Japanese restaurant in London. Last June, Michibata was romantically linked with DJ and musician Ohsawa Shinichi (41), but sources say they have since split up. Michibata, whose father is half-Argentine, half-Italian, and whose mother is Japanese, has been modeling since she was a child. She is the middle of three sisters, all of whom are fashion models. Jensen was with the Honda racing team last year, but they have announced their withdrawal from the F-1 circuit. The last big romance between a Japanese star and an F-1 driver saw popular actress Kumiko Goto (34) marry Frenchman Jean Alesi (44) in the mid-1990s.
• Pop duo Chage and Aska are taking an indefinite break from performing together. The pair made the formal announcement yesterday, after rumors circulated in the media that they were splitting up for good. They last performed together on Christmas Eve 2007 and have since been pursuing solo careers. Known as ChageAsu, the duo released their debut single in 1979 and became one of the best-selling J-pop acts of the 1980s and 90s, with such major hits as “Say Yes” and “Yah, Yah, Yah.”
• It was revealed yesterday that Shock Eye (32) of the reggae group Shonan no Kaze is getting married today. His new bride is described as younger and not in showbusiness. The couple are said to have been dating for the last nine years. Shonan no Kaze are to release a new single on February 25 – “Shinyu Yo” is the theme for the movie “Doroppu,” the directorial debut of comedian Shinagawa Hiroshi (36). The group will be touring from April.
• Meanwhile, actress Nomura Mami (44) chose her blog as the place to announce her recent marriage. She said she and her new husband, a TV producer (42), tied the knot on January 6 after a relationship of five years.