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Watanabe, Sato Clear World Championships 5000 m B-Standard at Golden Games in Nobeoka

by Brett Larner

The men's 5000 m Heat E.

Pre-typhoon rain couldn't hold back the times at the 2011 Golden Games in Nobeoka meet, May 28 in Noboeka. With a focus on the 5000 m, the meet's top men's heat saw two Japanese men, former middle-distance specialist Kazuya Watanabe (Team Shikoku Denryoku) and Yuki Sato (Team Nissin Shokuhin) break the World Championships B-standard. Watanabe ran a PB of 13:23.15 to win outright over a largely African field and become the all-time 8th-best Japanese man over the distance, while Sato was just off his PB with a 13:25.53 clocking, his best in five years. The Japanese man with the best 10,000 and half-marathon times of 2011, Tsuyoshi Ugachi (Team Konica Minolta) also ran a PB of 13:30.30. Just behind him Waseda University sophomore Suguru Osako, the Asian half-marathon jr. area record holder, likewise ran a large PB of 13:31.52 for 8th after a gutsy push to the front at 4000 m. Although none of the Africans in the top ten ran PBs, times were overall fast despite the conditions with Kenyan Edward Waweru (Team NTN) 2nd in 13:24.09 and Ethiopian Alemu Desta (Team Yasukawa Denki) 3rd in 13:24.23.

Five of the eight men's 5000 m heats had winning times under 14 minutes. Outside the top heat, the fastest time came in the first heat, where Chihiro Miyawaki (Team Toyota) ran a shocking 32-second PB to win in 13:35.74 over defending 5000 m national champion Yuki Matsuoka (Team Otsuka Seiyaku). Daegu World Championships marathoner Hiroyuki Horibata (Team Asahi Kasei) took the fourth heat in a PB of 13:53.07, continuing his steady progression of PBs since running 2:09:21 at March's Biwako Mainichi Marathon.

The women's 5000 m A-heat was a showdown between the top two Kenyan women currently based in Japan, Ann Karindi (Team Toyota Jidoshokki) and Sally Chepyego (Team Kyudenko). Karindi emerged victorious, breaking Chepyego's winning streak by running 15:15.89 to Chepyego's 15:17.75. Karindi's teammate Yuriko Kobayashi (Team Toyota Jidoshokki), the 1500 m national record holder and fastest Japanese woman over 5000 m in 2010, ran 15:43.61 for 3rd in her first race of the season.

2011 Golden Games in Nobeoka
Nobeoka, 5/28/11
Men's 5000 m Heat E
1. Kazuya Watanabe (Team Shikoku Denryoku) - 13:23.15 - PB
2. Edward Waweru (Kenya/Team NTN) - 13:24.09
3. Alemu Desta (Ethiopia/Team Yasukawa Denki) - 13:24.23
4. Gideon Ngatuny (Kenya/Team Nissin Shokuhin) - 13:25.17
5. Yuki Sato (Team Nissin Shokuhin) - 13:25.53
6. Paul Kuira (Kenya/Team Konica Minolta) - 13:27.20
7. Tsuyoshi Ugachi (Team Konica Minolta) - 13:30.30 - PB
8. Suguru Osako (Waseda Univ.) - 13:31.27 - PB
9. Patrick Mwaka (Kenya/Team Aisan Kogyo) - 13:31.52
10. Daniel Gitau (Kenya/Team Fujitsu) - 13:34.24

Women's 5000 m Heat A
1. Ann Karindi (Kenya/Team Toyota Jidoshokki) - 15:15.89
2. Sally Chepyego (Kenya/Team Kyudenko) - 15:17.75
3. Yuriko Kobayashi (Team Toyota Jidoshokki) - 15:43.61
4. Mai Ishibashi (Bukkyo Univ.) - 15:43.81 - PB
5. Mika Yoshikawa (Team Panasonic) - 15:45.77
6. Grace Kimanzi (Kenya/Team Starts) - 15:53.63
7. Hiroko Shoi (Team Nihon ChemiCon) - 15:57.73
8. Yukie Nagata (Team Toyota Jidoshokki) - 15:57.75
9. Chisa Nomura (Meijo Univ.) - 15:58.61
10. Seika Nishikawa (Team Sysmex) - 15:58.67

Men's 5000 m Heat D
1. Hiroyuki Horibata (Team Asahi Kasei) - 13:53.07 - PB
2. Takahiro Mori (Team Asahi Kasei) - 14:00.33
3. Yoshihiro Hinomoto (Team YKK) - 14:00.63

Men's 5000 m Heat C
1. Tomoya Adachi (Team Asahi Kasei) - 13:49.73
2. Yu Mitsuya (Team Toyota Kyushu) - 13:53.31
3. Shinji Ando (Team Togami Denki) - 13:57.68

Men's 5000 m Heat B
1. Shinobu Kubota (Komazawa Univ.) - 13:49.53 - PB
2. Kenta Matsumoto (Team Toyota) - 13:57.27
3. Hideohito Takamine (Team Fujitsu) - 13:57.58

Men's 5000 m Heat A
1. Chihiro Miyawaki (Team Toyota) - 13:35.74 - PB
2. Yuki Matsuoka (Team Otsuka Seiyaku) - 13:40.76
3. Yo Yazawa (Waseda Univ.) - 13:44.39

Women's 5000 m Heat B
1. Shiho Takechi (Bukkyo Univ.) - 15:50.10
2. Kyunghee Lim (Korea) - 15:57.96
3. Yurie Doi (Team Starts) - 16:06.07

Men's 1500 m
1. Yasuhiro Tago (Team Chugoku Denryoku) - 3:41.50
2. Hiroshi Ino (Team Fujitsu) - 3:44.49
3. Toshiki Imazaki (Ritsumeikan Univ.) - 3:48.85

Women's 1500 m
1. Mika Tanimizu (Meijo Univ.) - 4:24.54
2. Ayumi Takada (Canon AC Kyushu) - 4:25.52
3. Minami Nakaarai (Osaka Gakuin Univ.) - 4:30.61

Men's 800 m
1. Masato Yokota (Team Fujitsu) - 1:46.86 - MR
2. Yasuhiro Nakamura (Tsukuba Univ.) - 1:48.95
3. Taiki Tsutsumi (SDF Academy) - 1:51.94

Women's 800 m
1. Ayako Jinnouchi (Team Kyudenko) - 2:06.61
2. Ruriko Kubo (Team Edion) - 2:07.28
3. Chihiro Sunaga (Team Shiseido) - 2:07.66

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

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