Team Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo won despite missing Osaka World Championships women`s marathon bronze medalist Reiko Tosa who has been suffering from assorted injuries since Osaka. This bodes ill for her recovery leading up to the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Similarly, Team Kyocera was missing its star runner Yumiko Hara who performed poorly in Osaka due to a leg injury. Hara is scheduled to run the Osaka International Women`s Marathon next month to attempt to qualify for the Beijing Olympics, but her absence here raises questions about her current fitness.
It is also worth noting that despite most of the teams` best runners being Kenyan, foreign runners were limited to the 10 km third stage rather than being allowed to run the longest stage, the 11.6 km fifth stage. This type of restriction is also true in the men`s All Japan Jitsugyodan Ekiden.
Complete results from the race website:
Some Japanese-language race reports with photos: