Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tomoya Onishi Stage Record on Kyushu One-Circuit Ekiden Day Three

by Brett Larner

With the top Japanese men's 10000 m and half marathon times of the year and a 9th-place finish at the World Half Marathon Championships under his belt within the last month, Miyazaki Prefecture's Tomoya Onishi, 23, delivered another big run with a 43:55 stage record for the 15.3 km Fourth Stage on Day Three of the 2010 Kyushu One-Circuit Ekiden, Oct. 31 on Japan's southernmost main island of Kyushu. Onishi's time broke the existing stage record by 1:12, 5 seconds per km, and was equivalent to a solid 46:11 10-miler. Stage runner-up Ryuji Watanabe of Fukuoka Prefecture also broke the old Fourth Stage record with a 44:16 clocking.

As with the first two days of the ten-day Kyushu One-Circuit Ekiden, the Miyazaki Prefecture team dominated the early stages of Day Three. A weak run from Third Stage runner Noritaka Yokoyama put Miyazaki 59 seconds behind rivals Fukuoka prefecture at the start of the Fourth Stage, and the team spent the next four stage edging back toward the lead, coming within 18 seconds at the start of the final 12.4 km Eighth Stage. Miyazaki anchor and 2009 World Championships marathoner Masaya Shimizu went to work, reeling in struggling Fukuoka anchor Yutaka Kusaga and retaking the lead. A crushed Kusaga folded and had a rare DNF, meaning that Fukuoka would receive a penalty clocking for the anchor stage of 5 minutes slower than the slowest finisher. Despite this penalty, Fukuoka finished 2nd overall for the day. Nagasaki Prefecture maintained its 3rd place spot as the ekiden moves into its fourth day.

2010 Kyushu Isshu Ekiden Day Three
click here for complete results from Day Three
Stage Best Performances
First Stage (13.4 km) - Kenichi Shiraishi (Miyazaki Pref.) - 39:22
Second Stage (11.7 km) - Kenji Higashino (Miyazaki Pref.) - 35:55
Third Stage (10.4 km) - Yuya Konishi (Fukuoka Pref.) - 30:34
Fourth Stage (15.3 km) - Tomoya Onishi (Miyazaki Pref.) - 43:55 - CR
Fifth Stage (20.0 km) - Noritaka Fujiyama (Nagasaki Pref.) - 1:00:21
Sixth Stage (20.2 km) - Tomoyuki Sato (Miyazaki Pref.) - 1:01:21
Seventh Stage (14.4 km) - Kenichiro Setoguchi (Miyazaki Pref.) - 44:10
Eighth Stage (12.4 km) - Masaya Shimizu (Miyazaki Pref.) - 37:51

Top Team Performances - 117.8 km
1. Miyazaki Pref. - 5:56:53
2. Fukuoka Pref. - 6:03:55
3. Nagasaki Pref. - 6:08:20
4. Oita Pref. - 6:10:26
5. Kagoshima Pref. - 6:13:11

Top Team Standings After Day Three - 286.9 km
1. Miyazaki Pref. - 14:31:20
2. Fukuoka Pref. - 14:44:36
3. Nagasaki Pref. - 14:52:04
4. Oita Pref. - 15:09:20
5. Kagoshima Pref. - 15:12:36

(c) 2010 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

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