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Hayakari Breaks Own Steeplechase National Record in Heusden

by Brett Larner


Minori Hayakari`s 3000 m SC national record.

2008 National Track and Field Championships women`s 3000 m steeplechase champion Minori Hayakari (Kyoto Koka AC) ran 9:33.93 to break her own Japanese national record by almost 5 seconds at the KBC Night of Athletics in Heusden-Zolder, Belgium on July 20th. Her time, which was nearly 15 seconds better than her winning time at last month`s Nationals, landed Hayakari in 4th place just a step behind 3rd place finisher Irini Kokkinariou of Greece. 1st and 2nd place finishers Jenny Barringer and Anna Willard finished in a virtual tie, both breaking the U.S. national record. Heusden remained a lucky meet for Hayakari after having set the former Japanese national record at last year`s KBC Night of Athletics.

In the men`s 1500 m B-group, Kazuya Watanabe (Team Sanyo Tokushu Seiko), infamous for falling just meters before the finish while leading the 1500 m at last month`s Nationals, ran his best time of the season but just missed the Olympic B-standard. Osaka World Championships men`s 10000 m team member Kazuhiro Maeda (Team Kyudenko) ran a PB to break the Olympic B-standard in the men`s 5000 m B-group but came up short of making the Olympic A-standard and securing the final spot on the Beijing Olympic team. It was a good day overall for the Japanese men in the 5000, with 5 of the 8 men entered running PBs. 2007 National 3000 m steeplechase champion Jun Shinoto (Team Sanyo Tokushu Seiko), who fell during the steeplechase at this year`s Nationals and finished last, continued his run of bad luck when he scored a DNF in the 5000 m.

Japanese results at Heusden (click for video):

Men`s 800 m B-group
8. Hiroshi Sasano: 1:49.57

Women`s 1500 m
13. Mika Yoshikawa (Team Panasonic): 4:12.73
17. Nanae Kuwashiro (Team Acom): 4:21.79

Men`s 1500 m B-group
6. Kazuya Watanabe (Team Sanyo Tokushu Seiko): 3:40.97

Women`s 3000 m SC
4. Minori Hayakari (Kyoto Koka AC): 9:33.93 - NR

Men`s 5000 m B-group
5. Kazuhiro Maeda (Team Kyudenko): 13:25.24 - PB
16. Hidekazu Sato (Team Toyota Boshoku): 13:33.86 - PB

Men`s 5000 m National 1-group
4. Tsuyoshi Makabe (Team Kanebo): 13:40.04 - PB
5. Kazuharu Takai (Team Kyudenko): 13:40.10
7. Yuki Iwai (Team Asahi Kasei): 13:46.14 - PB
8. Hiroyuki Yamada (Team Konica-Minolta): 13:48.71 - PB
DNF: Jun Shinoto (Team Sanyo Tokushu Seiko)

Men`s 5000 m National 2-group
5. Tsuyoshi Takahashi: 14:22.51

A complete list of results is available here.

(c) 2008 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

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