translated by Mika Tokairin
Due to the major earthquake in northeast Japan, on Mar. 12 the organizers of the Nagoya International Women's Marathon, scheduled for Mar. 13, announced the official cancellation of the race. Nagoya was to be the final selection race for the national women's marathon team for this summer's World Championships in Daegu, Korea. There was no postponement of the race. In making the decision to cancel the race organizers took into account the continuous aftershocks, the prediction of more extensive damage than initial estimates, and the state of confusion in road traffic. The cancellation is the first in Nagoya's history since it was founded in 1980 as a 20 km women's road race.
In response to the cancellation, Rikuren has announced that by the time of its board meeting on Mar. 15 it will select a domestic or overseas race in April to serve as a replacement selection race. Only athletes who were entered to compete in Nagoya will be eligible to earn a place on the Daegu team if they run the replacement race. The April 17 Nagano Marathon is the most likely candidate.
Rikuren director Keisuke Sawaki commented, "We are going to choose athletes from that [selection race]. The criteria of being the top Japanese finisher and sub-2:26 remain unchanged."