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Kinukawa Again With 31:10.02 For All-Time Japanese #4 at Abashiri 10000 m

by Brett Larner

Ten days after staging a big comeback with a 15:09.96 national 5000 m title, the all-time sixth-best by a Japanese woman, Megumi Kinukawa (Team Mizuno) did it again, running a solo 31:10.02 at the June 22 Hokuren Distance Challenge Abashiri Meet 10000 m to become the all-time fourth-fastest Japanese woman over the distance. More impressive than her time, which cleared the World Championships A-standard by over 30 seconds and makes a double in Daegu very likely, was the way she paced the race. After a 15:45 first half Kinukawa gradually ratcheted up her pace, negative splitting with a 15:25 second half which included 9:09 for the final 3000 m and a superb 2:58 final km. Although rain shortly before the race helped to lower temperatures, conditions at the finish were still a less-than-ideal 20 degrees with 81% humidity. In light of this and her conservative first half it's exciting to consider what might be in store for Kinukawa against a more competitive, aggressive field like that she'll face in Daegu.

With Kinukawa's nearest competition over a minute behind there was little else noteworthy in the race, but roughly half the field recorded new PB marks. The same was true in the A-heat of the men's 5000 m, won by Kenyan John Thuo (Team Toyota) in 13:15.53. Six of the top ten ran new PBs, among them first-year Kenta Murayama (Komazawa Univ.), best known for his 28:23.18 as a high school senior last fall, and Kazuki Onishi (Team Kanebo), the lesser-known identical twin of 2010's top Japanese 10000 m and half-marathon runner Tomoya Onishi (Team Asahi Kasei).

The Hokuren Distance Challenge continues on Saturday in Fukagawa, Hokkaido.

2011 Hokuren Distance Challenge Abashiri Meet
Abashiri, Hokkaido, 6/22/11
Women's 10000 m
1. Megumi Kinukawa (Team Mizuno) - 31:10.02 - PB
2. Yoko Miyauchi (Team Kyocera) - 32:15.09
3. Hiroko Shoi (Team Nihon ChemiCon) - 32:17.39 - PB
4. Hiroko Miyauchi (Team Kyocera) - 32:23.29
5. Rei Ohara (Team Tenmaya) - 32:50.50
6. Hitomi Nakamura (Team Panasonic) - 32:50.75 - PB
7. Ayumi Sakaida (Team Daihatsu) - 32:59.09 - PB
8. Yuka Hakoyama (Team Wacoal) - 33:13.40
9. Asami Kato (Team Panasonic) - 33:16.21 - PB
10. Shiori Kakizaki (Team Wacoal) - 33:26.50 - debut

Men's 5000 m - Heat A
1. John Thuo (Keyna/Team Toyota) - 13:15.53 - PB
2. Edward Waweru (Kenya/Team NTN) - 13:18.94
3. Daisuke Shimizu (Team Kanebo) - 13:38.42 - PB
4. Assefe Fekele (Ethiopia/Team Kanebo) - 13:40.98 - PB
5. James Rungar (Kenya/Team Toyota) - 13:41.41
6. Kenta Matsumoto (Team Toyota) - 13:43.76 - PB
7. Kazuharu Takai (Team Kyudenko) - 13:46.78
8. Kenta Murayama (Komazawa Univ.) - 13:47.19 - PB
9. Kazuki Onishi (Team Kanebo) - 13:48.82 - PB
10. Kazuki Tomaru (Team Toyota) - 13:50.57

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

JY said…
That's awesome! After three years silence, Megumi Kinukawa was back and became a brand-new Megumi Kinukawa! Congratulation to her.

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