Skip to main content

Fukushi and Noguchi Headline 2012 Osaka International Women's Marathon

by Brett Larner

The organizers of the 2012 Osaka International Women's Marathon have come out with the elite field for the Jan. 29 Olympic selection edition of the historic event.  Although the field includes veteran defending Olympic gold medalist Constantina Dita (Romania), it's no secret that this race will be noteworthy for one reason: Noguchi vs. Fukushi.

Mizuki Noguchi (Team Sysmex), the 2004 Athens Olympics gold medalist, has run only two marathons since winning her medal, her 2:19:12 national record in Berlin '05 and her 2:21:37 CR at the old Tokyo International Women's Marathon in '07.  Beset by serial injuries since then, she is set to make a comeback and to go for the London Olympic team in Osaka.  Multiple national record holder Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) will be going up against her in her third marathon, with a failed debut in Osaka '08 and a decent 2:24:38 follow-up for 3rd at this fall's Chicago Marathon.  Noguchi, who will do her final tune-up on Friday at the Sanyo Women's Half Marathon, is talking tough about running an aggressive race, while Fukushi sounds uncharacteristically cautious.  Regardless, if both are close to 100% then it is unlikely the race will be slow enough for anyone else to factor in.

Only Azusa Nojiri (Team Daiichi Seimei) or Risa Shigetomo (Team Tenmaya) could conceivably contend.  Nojiri, a former pro XC skiier and teammate of '09 WC silver medalist Yoshimi Ozaki, ran her PB of 2:25:29 in difficult circumstances at London this year and was responsible for getting the Daegu World Championships marathon on track after a slow start, but she would need a major improvement is Osaka to have a shot at an Olympic spot.  Shigetomo had a disappointing debut in London this year, but Tenmaya runners, including general division entrant  Naoko Sakamoto, have a history of running well in Olympic and World Championships selection races, if seldom again.  Shigetomo had an outstanding run at last weekend's National Corporate Women's Ekiden Championships and, without the disruption to her training that she faced in shifting from Nagoya to London following March's disasters, she may be the safest bet for a top three finish outside the two big stars.

Rikuren, the Japanese federation, has not announced clear-cut selection criteria for the London Olympics marathon team.  Given the slow 2:26:32 winning time at the first selection race, last month's Yokohama International Women's Marathon, it's possible that both Noguchi and Fukushi could be chosen on the strength of their Osaka performances, but it would likely take each of them pushing the other to the fastest Japanese women's time since Noguchi's '07 Tokyo International record for that to happen.  And that will require both arriving on the starting line in one piece.

2012 Osaka International Women's Marathon Elite Field
and selected general division entrants
click here for complete elite field

Mizuki Noguchi (Team Sysmex) - 2:19:12 (Berlin '05)
Constantina Dita (Romania) - 2:21:30 (Chicago '05)
Naoko Sakamoto (Team Tenmaya) - 2:21:51 (Osaka Int'l '03)
Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) - 2:24:38 (Chicago '11)
Kiyoko Shimahara (Second Wind AC) - 2:25:10 (Hokkaido '09)
Lidiya Grigoryeva (Russia) - 2:25:10 (Los Angeles '06)
Azusa Nojiri (Team Daiichi Seimei) - 2:25:29 (London '11)
Mihaela Botezan (Romania) - 2:25:32 (London '03)
Chika Horie (Team Univ. Ent.) - 2:26:11 (Hokkaido '02)
Madoka Ogi (Team Juhachi Ginko) - 2:26:55 (Osaka Int'l 08)
Tetiana Gamera-Shmyrko (Ukraine) - 2:28:14 (Krakow '11)
Irene Kemunto Mogaka (Kenya) - 2:30:10 (Los Angeles '09)
Risa Shigetomo (Team Tenmaya) - 2:31:28 (London '11)

Pacers
Aniko Kalovics (Hungary)
Julia Mumbi (Kenya)
Chizuru Ideta (Team Daihatsu)
Kumi Ogura (Team Shikoku Denryoku)

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Tokyo Experiments With Spraying Water Along 2020 Marathon Course to Combat Heat

As part of its measures to deal with the hot conditions expected at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, on Aug. 13 the Tokyo Metropolitan Government conducted an experiment to measure the effects on pavement surface temperature of spraying the road surface with water. Data from the experiments were released to the media.

The experiment was conducted from 4:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. along a 120 m section of sidewalk along Uchibori Street in the Imperial Palace's outer gardens in Chiyoda Ward.  In the experiment, open-ended tubes used in agricultural work eres placed at the edge of the sidewalk  to supply water. Surface temperature readings were taken every 30 minutes for three different experimental scenarios:
spraying water beginning at 4:00 a.m.spraying water beginning at 7:00 a.m.not spraying any water The experiment found that where water had been sprayed, the road surface temperature remained in the 27 to 29˚C range even when the air temperature exceeded 30˚C. Where no wa…

Running the 2020 Olympic Marathon Course Part Three - The Men's Marathon and Racewalks

Following last week's run over most of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics marathon course exactly two years before the women's marathon, this morning I went out to do it again at the same time the men's marathon will be held. Last week we focused mostly on the first 20 km and finish. This week I looked more at the second part of the course after 20 km, starting at 7 a.m. and making it back to the stadium at 9:45, about the same time the last few runners in the men's race are likely to finish in two years. Effort-wise I ran about 4:15/km, slightly faster than last week's run to get a better sense of what a decent effort would feel like in the Tokyo conditions.

The Report Last week's heat, humidity and sun pretty well represented Tokyo's weather this summer, but no summer would be complete without a few typhoons. One passed just east of Tokyo yesterday and during the night, bringing cooler temperatures and shifting winds and humidity as it passed to the northeast. The …

24 Hour World Champion Ishikawa Wins Berlin 100 MIler

2017 24-hour world champion Yoshihiko Ishikawa (Nichia Kagaku) won the 100 Meilen Berlin Saturday, just short of the course record but beating his nearest competition by over an hour as he finished in 13:17.41. Part of a sizable lead group in the early going, Ishikawa broke free of the competition after two hours and was on his own the rest of the way.

Projecting a finish time under 13 hours well into the race, in the later stages he slowed enough to miss the 13:06:52 course record set in 2014 but was still in a different class from the rest of the field, runner-up Stephane Ruel of France coming in in 14:25:24. Women's winner Monika Biegasiewicz of Poland won with the same kind of margin, running 15:29:48 to 2nd-placer Annette Mueller's 16:37:36.
100 Meilen Berlin Top ResultsBerlin, Germany, 8/11/18
complete results

Men
1. Yoshihiko Ishikawa (Japan) - 13:17.41
2. Stephane Ruel (France) - 14:25:24
3. Uwe Laenger (Germany) - 14:30:53
4. Stefan Wilsdorf (Germany) - 14:55:56
5. Sas…