Skip to main content

Can Nikki Chapple and Daniel Gitau Win the Marugame Half Marathon? Watch Online! (updated)

Can Australian Nikki Chapple and Kenyan student runner Daniel Gitau of Nihon University run large PBs of 1:08:37 and 1:01:08 to take surprise wins at last Sunday's Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon? Watch Fuji TV's broadcast to find out! Conveniently timed for the hometown crowd, Fuji will air a 55-minute highlight show from 2:38 to 3:33 a.m. on Wed., Feb. 11. International viewers should be to watch online for free using the often-reliable Keyhole TV. JRNLive will unfortunately not be able to provide live English commentary on the broadcast as we will be too busy sleeping and will instead record the race.

Update: Having watched the race this morning and looked through the overall results, a couple of things came to my attention. One, this was a big day for the 18-22 year old Japanese men. Waseda Univ. first-year Shota Hiraga, the 2009 Ageo City Half Marathon winner and a graduate of Saku Chosei H.S., tied the 19 year old half marathon record of 1:02:08. Yamanashi Gakuin Univ. ace Muryo Takase's 1:01:57 was the second-fastest ever by a Japanese 21 year old. Yuichiro Ogawa (Team Kanebo) and Yusuke Takabayashi (Komazawa Univ.) are now ranked 4th and 5th on the all-time Japanese 22 year old list with their 1:01:53 and 1:01:54. Takabayashi knew it, too; even though he was outkicked by Ogawa he was smiling as soon as he finished and clapped Ogawa on the back.

Two, Nikki Chapple looked out of place. Wearing mid-length baggy shorts and a logo-free t-shirt and built like a triathlete it seemed like she was in the wrong race among all the skinny people in singlets and racing shorts. She's a powerful runner. She said her goal was for a 68, so mission accomplished.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi Wins 7th-Straight Okinoshima 50 km

Running the Okinoshima 50 km Ultramarathon on his late father's home island of Oki for the eighth year in a row, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) ran 2:52:55 to win it for the seventh straight time. Starting strong on the relatively flat first 10 km where he clocked 33:26, low-2:47 pace, Kawauchi slowed to just over 2:50 pace on the course's toughest hills between 10 and 30 km. A sub-2:50 was still in range at that point, but over the last 20 km he faded further to finish in the second-slowest of his Okinoshima wins.



The day before the race Kawauchi paced children in Okinoshima's kids' run. Following that he greeted participants and local supporters at an expo event where he was hailed onstage as the Boston Marathon winner. As per his usual routine, his next race will be the July 1 Gold Coast Marathon in Australia.

© 2018 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

Kipchirchir and Chebii Take on Three Gold Coast Winners

The men's race at Australia's Gold Coast Marathon is usually a Kenya-Japan head-to-head, Kenya taking six wins and Japan three in the last ten years. With not a single Ethiopian in the field for this year's 40th edition it looks set for it to happen yet again.

Sub-2:10 Kenyans Victor Kipchirchir, Douglas Chebii, Philip Sanga and the Japan-based Michael Githae will line up to take on three of the race's last four winners, 2017 champ Takuya Noguchi (Konica Minolta), 2015-16 winner and course record holder Kenneth Mungara (Kenya) and 2013 champ and perpetual top three placer Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't). With a 1:01:20 at last year's Prague Half debuting Kenyan Eliud Mwangi should also factor into the front end. Give the advantage to team Kenya in this bout, but as Noguchi and Kawauchi have proven Gold Coast is a race where Japanese men are legit contenders.

With the window for getting qualifying times for next year's MGC Race 2020 Olympic trials start…

Japan's 2020 Olympic Trials Marathon to be Held September 15, 2019

On June 15 the JAAF announced the date and course for the Marathon Grand Championship Race, or MGC Race for short, its new almost-one-shot trials race that will determine at least two of the three members of its men's and women's marathon teams for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The MGC Race will be held 11 months prior to the Olympics on September 15, 2019. The winners of the MGC Race will be named to the 2020 team, with either the 2nd or 3rd placer also named to the team depending on whether either has broken a fast standard, 2:05:30 for men and 2:21:00 for women. The remaining top three placer will have to wait until March, 2020 to find out whether they will be included on the team or passed over in favor of someone who clears another fast standard in one of the big six domestic elite marathons in the winter of 2019-20.

The MGC Race course will closely follow the already announced Olympic course, the only key exception being a start and finish in the Jingu Gaien district nearby …