Skip to main content

Kawauchi 2nd in First Race of the Year (updated)

http://hochi.yomiuri.co.jp/event/sports/news/20120109-OHT1T00005.htm
http://www.sanspo.com/sports/news/120108/spg1201081654000-n1.htm
http://www.daily.co.jp/newsflash/2012/01/08/0004729613.shtml

translated and edited by Brett Larner

In his first race of the year, Olympic marathon hopeful Yuki Kawauchi (24, Saitama Pref.) finished 2nd in 1:06:19 at the 13th Mari Tanigawa Half Marathon behind winner Kazuyoshi Tokumoto (32, Team Nissin Shokuhin) who ran 1:05:36.  Kawauchi declared the performance a good shakeout in the buildup to his bid for the London Olympic team at the Feb. 26 Tokyo Marathon.

Two years ago Kawauchi won the Mari Tanigawa Half Marathon in 1:06:49, and last year he was 3rd in 1:06:40.  This time, running into a strong headwind in the second half of the race Kawauchi slowed, but he still held on to make the podium in his best time on this course.  "Now I've got all three kinds of medals from this race," he laughed.  "My dream is to travel to see all the other amateur runners all across Japan.  From now on I'll go anywhere I'm invited."

Over the New Year's holidays Kawauchi joined a training camp with his old high school, Saitama's Kasukabe Higashi H.S., where he ran much more mileage than usual, banging out 50-60 km per day.  He will not run on the Saitama team at the Jan. 22 National Men's Ekiden, instead running the local Okumusashi Ekiden on Jan. 29 a week before returning to the Feb. 5 Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon on the road to Tokyo.  "My goal is to run 2:07 in Tokyo," he said, "so in Marugame I'm aiming to break my PB [1:02:40 at last year's Marugame]."  As with last year, the Marugame Half will be where Kawauchi revs his engine up to go full throttle at the Tokyo Marathon, where, he said, "I want to prove that amateurs can aim for the Olympics too.  This is the year where I take it all on."

Update: Amino Vital AC runners Kaori Yoshida and Eri Hayakawa went 1-2 in the women's race in quick times of 1:11:16 and 1:12:55.  It was Yoshida's third-straight and fourth-total win at the Tanigawa Half.  Hayakawa is a three-time past winner, taking the 2004, 2006 and 2007 editions.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi Brothers Repeat Father's Day Okinoshima Ultra Sweep

For the second year in a row brothers Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) and Yoshiki Kawauchi (unattached) returned to their late father's home island of Okinoshima to dominate the Father's Day Okinoshima Ultramarathon 50 km and 100 km.

Yoshiki, the younger of the two, ran the 100 km for the third time. In his 2015 debut he suffered mightily on the way in to an 11:21:52 finish. Returning with a year's more experience in 2016, he won in a course record 7:20:31. This time he was out fast in search of his first sub-7 clocking, averaging 4:00/km at 40 km through the hilliest part of the course before starting to slow. At 60 km he was still on track for a sub-7, splitting 4:07:10, but when he hit the series of three >100 m elevation gain climbs just after 60 km sub-7 slipped out of reach. Still well under course pace with a 7:12:27 projection at 80 km Yoshiki struggled on the last 100 m climb just over 5 km from the finish, coming in for the win in 7:29:06. Yoshiki has…

Ageo City Half Marathon Leads Weekend Action - Preview

by Brett Larner

Rainy weather lies ahead for a busy weekend of racing across the country.  Track is a part of the calender from April through December, and this weekend features several large time trial meets including the Shizuoka Long Distance Time Trials Meet and, closer to Tokyo, the Nittai University Time Trials Meet.  Men's 5000 m is the focus at Nittai with 37 separate heats in one day, the fastest heat led by 12 Japan-based Africans including Bedan Karoki (DeNA RC), Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) and Paul Kuira (Team Konica Minolta).

The main action this weekend, however, happens on the roads, and there's no question that the Ageo City Half Marathon is the main event.  Ageo, the race that university coaches use to thin their rosters ahead of deciding their lineups for January's Hakone Ekiden, is one of two Japanese half marathons vying for the title of world's greatest half, locked in a duel with March's National University Half Marathon to produce the d…

List of Japanese Athletes Qualified for 2017 London World Championships

It's 50 days to go to the 2017 London World Championships and just over a week out from the 101st Japanese National Track and Field Championships in Osaka where the country's best will be trying to earn places on the London team. Athletes will have the chance to chase standards in the weeks after Nationals, but excluding the marathon, walks and combined events, all of which are held separately from the National Championships, the following is a list of Japanese athletes already holding valid qualifying marks for London.

Things are looking very thin right now, with only the men's 100 m, women's 5000 m and women's 10000 m currently capable of fielding complete contingents, although at least the men's 200 m, men's pole vault and conceivably the men's 10000 m could join that short list. With sixteen women currently holding the London standard the women's 10000 m looks to be the toughest to make even if marathon squad members Yuka Ando (Suzuki Hamamatsu…