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Shibui To Run Osaka International Women's Marathon (updated)

translated and edited by Brett Larner

Following the Dec. 14 All-Japan Jitsugyodan Women's Ekiden, Beijing Olympics 10000 m competitor and former marathon national record holder Yoko Shibui (29, Team Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) announced that she will run the Jan. 25 Osaka International Women's Marathon in a bid to make the national team for next summer's World Championships in Berlin. Osaka will come two months after Shibui ran the Nov. 16 Tokyo International Women's Marathon where she finished 4th, missing a spot on the World Championships team.

"Yeah, I'm gonna do Osaka!" Shibui exclaimed. "I'm in great shape so I think I should just keep going with my training." Shaking his head, team Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo head coach Shigeharu Watanabe commented, "I kind of think Nagoya [in March] would be better."

In the All-Japan Jitsugyodan Women's Ekiden, Shibui scored her first stage best title on the 10 km 3rd leg in 8 years, clocking 31:41 against the stage 5th mark of 32:32 set by fellow Beijing Olympian Kayoko Fukushi (26, Team Wacoal) and the 33:10 time run by Beijing Olympic marathoner Yurika Nakamura (22, Team Tenmaya).

Looking forward to Jan. 25 and her next chance for a ticket to Berlin, Shibui said, "I want to run with a little bit of self-control this time."

Translator's note: Immediately following Tokyo, Shibui announced that she would run March's Nagoya International Women's Marathon to try again for the World Championships team. Her switch to Osaka means she will be competing against Team Hokuren's Yukiko Akaba in Akaba's marathon debut. Shibui narrowly outkicked Akaba in the 10000 m at last summer's National Track and Field Championships to take the 2008 national title and a spot on the Beijing Olympic team.


Anonymous said…
I was in Gifu for the race and I saw Shibui pass by at about 2km in the 3rd stage. She looked extremely fierce, running very aggressively.

However, we all know that there is a huge difference between a 10km and a marathon!

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translated and edited by Brett Larner