Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Rikuren Downgrades Noguchi's Official Status

translated by Brett Larner

For the tenth consecutive year, on Mar. 16 Rikuren announced the list of athletes who will receive official financial support from the federation. Previously ranked as a top-level S-Class athlete with 3 million yen of support per year, 2004 Athens Olympics women's marathon gold medalist Mizuki Noguchi (Team Sysmex) was downgraded to an A-Class athlete and will receive only 2 million yen this year. Noguchi was a member of the Beijing Olympics marathon team but withdrew shortly before the race due to injury and has not raced again since then.

Three athletes received S-Class rankings for 2010-2011: men's hammer thrower Koji Murofushi (Team Mizuno), women's marathoner Yoshimi Ozaki (Team Daiichi Seimei) and men's javelin thrower Yukifumi Murakami (Team Suzuki).

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