Skip to main content

Japanese Olympic Track Results - Aug. 21

by Brett Larner

Men's 4 x 100 m Relay - Heats
Japan's 4 x 100 m relay team of Naoki Tsukahara, Shingo Suetsugu, Shinji Takahira and Nobuhara Asahara survived a wild heat which saw four of the eight competing teams drop the baton to finish 2nd in a season-best 38.52. This was the third-fastest time among the teams which made the final, giving Japan a legitimate chance for its first track and field medal of the Beijing Olympics.

The same Japanese team set the Asian record of 38.03 in finishing 5th at last summer's World Track and Field Championships in Osaka. Of the teams which beat Japan at the World Championships, only Jamaica finished ahead of Japan in the Olympic heats, winning its heat in 38.31, with the teams from the U.K. and U.S.A. eliminated after dropping their batons. Japan finished well ahead of the Brazilian team which had placed 4th at the World Championships. Trinidad and Tobago, which did not make the World Championships final, won the heat against Japan in the fastest overall qualifying time, 38.26.

36 year-old anchor Nobuhara Asahara had announced that he would retire after the World Championships but agreed to remain in competition for the Beijing Olympics. The 4 x 100 m relay final will surely be Asahara's last race, with the prospect of even a bronze medal adding to the anticipation.

(c) 2008 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

5th-Ranked Koku Gakuin Pulls Off Last Km Upset to Win First-Ever Izumo Ekiden Title

In the modern era of systematic mass-production of quality by dominant teams like Tokai University and Aoyama Gakuin University it has been years since an underdog came through with a surprise win on Japan's university men's ekiden circuit, but that's just what happened at today's Izumo Ekiden to kick off the 2019-20 Big Three University Ekiden season.

The race was expected to be between defending champ Tokai and Buddhist powerhouse Komazawa University, with threats from AGU and fan favorites Toyo University. Like last year Tokai struggled a bit to get on its feet, lagging as a core leading quartet coalesced over the first half of the race's six stages. Running better than expected, #5-ranked Koku Gakuin University was right up in it along with AGU, Komazawa and Toyo, its second and third men Taiga Nakanishi and Yuhei Urano taking 3rd on their stages and Urano one of six men on the Third Stage to break its course record.

The leading quartet broke up into two pairs…

Local Unemployed Man Arrested For Stealing 330,000 Yen of Team's Money at Izumo Ekiden Alternates' Race

On October 14 Shimane prefectural police arrested local unemployed man Yudai Kawai, 32, on suspicion of stealing 329,000 yen [~$3000 USD] from university students' bags at the Izumo Ekiden alternates' race track 5000 m.

The alleged incident took place at approximately 5:10 p.m. on Oct. 14 at Hamayama Park Field in Izumo. Kawai was accused of entering a room off-limits to the general public, opening the bags  of two student managers for a private Tokyo-area university's ekiden team, and taking the money from their wallets.

According to police, Kawai entered the room during the track race when the room was unlocked and unwatched. While putting the empty wallets back in the bags Kawai was caught in the act by one team's head coach who happened to return to the room at that time. Students who were entered in the Izumo Ekiden as alternates but did not run had the option of taking part in the track 5000 m.

source article:
https://www.nikkansports.com/m/general/news/amp/201910…