Skip to main content

Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon Expecting Fast Times on New Course

http://mainichi.jp/area/oita/news/20091113ddlk44050489000c.html

translated by Mika Tokairin and Brett Larner

The office-opening ceremonies for the 59th Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon next Feb. 7 took place Nov. 12 at the Oita Civic Track and Field Grounds. Organizing committee assistant director Toshio Hamamoto, the head of the Oita Athletics Association, hung the race organization's sign on the entrance to the Oita Grounds' facilities to signify that next year's race is now open.

The first committee meeting came immediately after the opening ceremony. In his welcoming comments Hamamoto told committee members, "We are making the first major course change in 26 years. We hope the change will attract many talented runners and help them to set fast new times. Please give us your help and support to ensure the success of this event."

The new course starts in front of the Umitamago attraction in Oita and travels north along route 10 before turning back at Kamegawa Bypass in Beppu and heading to a finish at the Oita Civic Track and Field Grounds. Athletes can expect a tailwind for 60% of the course and will be running through the center of Oita city during the second of the race, meaning great crowd support along the roads. The nation's marathoners are eagerly anticipating the new course. For more information, contact the race office at 097-558-1999.

Translator's note: Click here for a map of the new course. The actual roads covered on the new course are almost identical to the old one, but rather than a single out-and-back the new version starts in the middle and breaks it into two sections. It pits runners against the area's famous winds in the first 10 km rather than near halfway as on the old course. The stadium finish has not changed.

Beppu-Oita is rumored to be bringing in a very special guest to help set a fast record on the new course.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kariuki Cracks Course Record at 30th Anniversary Ageo City Half Marathon

2017 Kanto Regionals 10000 m and half marathon D2 champion Simon Kariuki (Nihon Yakka Univ.)  overcame windy conditions at the 30th edition of the Ageo City Half Marathon to shave one second off the course record, winning in a PB 1:01:25.

Kariuki and 2017 Kanto Regionals D1 5000 m and 10000 m champ Patrick Mathenge Wambui (Nihon Univ.) took it out in the first km, setting up a fascinating duel between Kanto's top two collegiate men on the track.


Led by Hayato Seki, star runner of this year's Izumo Ekiden champ Tokai University in his half marathon debut, the main body of the Japanese pack gradually relinquished the lead to the Kenyan pair, down 50 seconds by 10 km and continuing to drift back from then. Ageo has typically seen its lead Japanese collegiate men running between high-61 and mid-62, but nobody in the field seemed willing to go ahead of Seki and the runner on his shoulder, 2017 World University Games half marathon gold medalist Kei Katanishi (Komazawa Univ.).


Near …

Breaking Down the Best-Ever Japanese Marathon Times By Country

Japanese marathoners these days have the reputation of rarely racing abroad, and of rarely racing well when they do. Back in the day that wasn't true; Japanese marathoners have won all the World Marathon Majors-to-be except New York, and two of the three Japanese men to have run 2:06 and all three women to have run 2:19 did it outside Japan. Whatever the extent to which things did turn inward along the way, the last few years have seen an uptick in Japanese runners going farther afield and running better there than any others before them.

The lists above and below show the fastest times run by Japanese athletes in different countries to 2:20:00 for men and 2:45:00 for women. Japanese men have run sub-2:20 marathons in 37 countries around the world including Japan, with Japanese women having cleared 2:45 in 33 countries including at home. Breaking it down by IAAF label times, more Japanese men have run label standard times abroad, but women have typically performed at a higher label…

Kosimbei, Kwemoi and Shitara Lead Hachioji 10000 m Field

Nestled deep in the misty foothills of the western Tokyo mountains, Hosei University's late November Hachioji Long Distance meet has quietly turned into one of the world's premier track 10000 m, its A-heat never quite dipping under 27 minutes yet but still producing record-setting depth and the two fastest Japanese men's 10000 m in history.
This year's entry list is another monster, with 27:02.59 man Nicholas Kosimbei (Toyota) leading 17 men with recent times under 28 minutes, twelve of them Kenyan, three Japanese and two Ethiopian. Fresh off a 27:22.73 win at last weekend's Nittai University Time Trials, two-time steeplechase junior world champion Jonathan Ndiku (Hitachi Butsuryu) is slated to pace what is scheduled to be a sub-28 race, but with Kosimbei, sub-27:30 men John Maina (Fujitsu) and Rodgers Chumo Kwemoi (Aisan Kogyo) and five others under 27:45 including last year's winnerRonald Kwemoi (Komori Corp.) on the list the front end should go faster. 
Rig…