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Miyahara Takes Five Minutes Off Own Course Record at Fuji Mountain Race

by Brett Larner

With a near-miss from typhoon #6, one of Japan's most difficult and popular midsummer races, the 64th Fuji Mountain Race, took place as scheduled July 22.  Toru Miyahara, who set the course record of 2:32:40 in the 21 km, 3000 m climb Summit Division five years ago, returned to take five minutes off his mark as he ran 2:27:41 for a new course record and his third win at the event's longest distance.  Runner-up Satoshi Kato, the winner of last year's 15 km, 1460 climb Fifth Stage Division making his debut at the full distance, was fast enough to have won most years but was nearly fourteen minutes behind Miyahara, finishing in 2:41:11.  Last year's women's Fifth Stage Division winner Mina Ogawa also made a successful transition to the long race as she won in 3:10:45, a winning time only four women have bettered in the 27 years that the Fuji Mountain Race has had a women's division.  Kei Kikushima and Mitsuko Hirose won the men's and women's races in the Fifth Stage Division, running 1:22:00 and 1:40:58 respectively.

2011 Fuji Mountain Race Top Results
Mt. Fuji, 7/22/11
click here for complete top ten results

Summit Division Men
1. Toru Miyahara - 2:27:41 - CR
2. Satoshi Kato - 2:41:11
3. Yoshihito Kondo - 2:48:26

Summit Division Women
1. Mina Ogawa - 3:10:45
2. Naomi Ochiai - 3:23:26
3. Chinatsu Yoshida - 3:27:11

Fifth Stage Division Men
1. Kei Kikushima - 1:22:00
2. Hiroaki Iwanaga - 1:23:05
3. Shunsuke Okunomiya - 1:26:07

Fifth Stage Division Women
1. Mitsuko Hirose - 1:40:58
2. Satoko Moriguchi - 1:47:48
3. Yumiko Ishitsuka - 1:50:20

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
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