by Brett Larner
The East Japan regional qualifiers for December's National Jitsugyodan Women's Ekiden Championships and the Jan. 1 New Year Ekiden corporate men's national championships take place Nov. 3 in Saitama. Both the women's and men's races feature some of the top talent in Japan, including World Championships women's marathon runners Yukiko Akaba (Team Hokuren), Azusa Nojiri (Team Daiichi Seimei) and Yoshimi Ozaki (Team Daiichi Seimei) and track aces Kasumi Nishihara (Team Yamada Denki), Yuki Sato (Team Nissin Shokuhin) and Tsuyoshi Ugachi (Team Konica Minolta). Particularly noteworthy in the men's race is the return to ekiden action of Daegu World Championships 10000 m world champion Ibrahim Jeilan (Team Honda), who will face Kenyan rivals Clement Langat (Team Subaru), Josephat Ndambiri (Team Komori Corp.), Jonathan Ndiku (Team Hitachi Cable) and Gideon Ngatuny (Team Nissin Shokuhin).
The races will be broadcast on TBS beginning at 1:55 p.m. on Nov. 3, Japan time. Overseas viewers should be able to watch online via Keyhole TV. Live English commentary is to be had via Twitter @JRNLive.
(c) 2011 Brett Larner
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