Skip to main content

Asian Jr. Champ Akamatsu Wins Nat'l HS 1500 m

http://www.nikkansports.com/sports/athletics/news/p-sp-tp0-20100731-660194.html
http://www.nikkansports.com/sports/athletics/news/p-sp-tp0-20100731-660197.html

translated and edited by Brett Larner

At the 2010 National High School Track and Field Championships at Okinawa Prefectural Sports Park on the island of Amami, Kojokan High School's Mahiro Akamatsu (3rd yr.) won the girls' 1500 m, holding up her right hand in victory as she crossed the line. The pace was quick right from the start, but Akamatsu remained calm and composed. "It was windy and hot," she said after the race, "but I was moving well and I was sure I could do it." With one lap to go Akamatsu dropped the rest of the leaders with an aggressive spurt which carried her to the win by a margin of nearly three seconds, clocking 4:19.80.

Akamatsu came to the championships confident from her gold medal in the 3000 m at last month's Asian Junior Games in Vietnam. Kojokan H.S. head coach Yoshiji Morimasa commented, "She's gotten mentally tough and had the confidence to run the race the way she wanted to." Having run the 1500 m as practice for the 3000 m, Akamatsu will go for the double in the 3000 m final on Aug. 2.

In the boys' 1500 m, Kenyan exchange student Michael Githinji (3rd yr.) of Aomori Yamada H.S. had a narrow victory to take his second-straight 1500 m title. "Aomori is cool since it's up north, but I didn't expect it to be this hot here!" he laughed after the race, which took place on the first day of full-blown subtropical Amami summer heat. Launching his last attack with 300 m to go, Githinji drew even with leader Genki Yagisawa (3rd yr.) of Nasu Takuyo H.S. The pair ran side by side down the home stretch, Githinji outleaning Yagisawa to win in 3:46.48 by a margin of just 0.02 seconds. Aomori Yamada head coach Tsutomu Nikaido told reporters, "He's been doing great work all season, so I was confident he would win here."

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…