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Fukushi, Sato, Matsumiya and More to Run Chicago Marathon

by Brett Larner

The Chicago Marathon has updated its elite field listing for this year's running due on Oct. 9.  Notable amond the adds are Japanese half marathon national record holders Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) and Atsushi Sato (Team Chugoku Denryoku) and former 30 km world record holder Takayuki Matsumiya (Team Konica Minolta), along with five other Japanese men.  For Fukushi it will be her first attempt at a marathon since her bizzarely suicidal debut at the 2008 Osaka International Women's Marathon.  In the official press release announcing her participation Fukushi was quoted as saying, "At this year's Bank of America Chicago Marathon, I want to challenge the 2:20 mark, and also test my own abilities in the marathon and what the distance involves. Racing in Chicago is the start of my preparation for the 2012 Olympic Games Marathon in London."

Sato will be attempting another comeback after a year and a half away from the distance.  Matsumiya, the top Japanese man at last year's Fukuoka International Marathon, has yet to translate his success at shorter distance to the marathon but will no doubt be aiming to join the list of Japanese men to break 2:10 this year.  Five other Japanese men who ran well in domestic marathons during the last winter/spring season are also slated to run.  Below is a listing of Japanese runners currently entered.  Click here for the official field listing.

2011 Chicago Marathon Field - Japanese Men
Atsushi Sato (Team Chugoku Denryoku) - 2:07:13 (3rd, Fukuoka 2007)
Takayuki Matsumiya (Team Konica Minolta) - 2:10:04 (2nd, Rotterdam 2007)
Takashi Horiguchi (Team Honda) - 2:12:05 (10th, Tokyo 2011)
Koji Gokaya (Team JR Higashi Nihon) - 2:12:07 (10th, Biwako 2011)
Masaki Shimoju (Team Konica Minolta) - 2:12:18 (1st, Nobeoka 2010)
Hironori Arai (Team Chudenko) - 2:12:27 (11th, Biwako 2011)
Yuki Moriwaki (Team JFE Steel) - 2:12:34 (6th, Beppu-Oita 2011)

Japanese Women
Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) - 2:40:54 (19th, Osaka 2008)

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

TokyoRacer said…
I love Fukushi, she's the world's most cheerful runner. I hope she does well.

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Lexicon

Betsudai - the Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon
daigaku - university
ekiden - a long-distance relay race
faito - a courseside audience cheer; see ganbatte
ganbatte (ganbare) - a courseside audience cheer; see faito
gasshuku - an intensive training camp
Hakone Ekiden - the annual university men`s championships
jitsugyodan - corporate-sponsored professional running teams
onsen - a hot spring
Q-chan - Naoko Takahashi, the 2000 Sydney Olympics women`s marathon gold medalist, Olympic record holder and first woman to break 2:20 in the marathon
rikujo - track and field, the marathon, and other running events
Rikuren - the JAAF
tasuki - the sash which is handed off during an ekiden
zannen - too bad
otaku - a nerdy, socially awkward person, usually male, who is obsessed with some esoteric topic

Race Entries

Races in Japan usually close entry at least a month beforehand, often much longer. They generally do not have race day entry and race organizers are not willing to make special exceptions for foreigners. If you are coming to Japan for, say, a business trip in two weeks, it is not possible to enter a race. If you are making longer-range plans then it may be possible to find a suitable event using the following services:

Samurai Running Japan is a long-standing entry service that focuses on smaller races to help overseas visitors "experience the 'real' Japan."  Along with entry it assists with accommodations and transportation.

Launched in September, 2015, Runnet Japan is an English-language branch of Runnet, Japan's dominant online entry service, catering to the international community.  The number of races offered on Runnet Japan is still limited but constantly expanding.

Other entry services like Sports Entry, TecNet and the new Sportsnavi Do still offer only Ja…

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