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).