Skip to main content

Yamagata Earns Japan's Third-Ever 100 m Medal: "I Did My Best"

http://www.sponichi.co.jp/sports/news/2013/07/10/kiji/K20130710006186850.html

translated by Brett Larner

On day three of the 2013 World University Games in Kazan, Russia, Ryota Yamagata (21, Keio Univ.) ran 10.21 in the men's 100 m final for 2nd, becoming the third man in Japanese history to win a 100 m medal after Hideo Ojima's gold at the 1965 Budapest Games and Masashi Eriguchi's bronze in Beograd in 2009.

With the silver medal hung around his neck, Yamagata had a bright, delighted expression as he stood on the podium.  Although he missed becoming Japan's first gold medalist in 48 years, his second place finish came in the midst of a pack of three athletes all clocking the same time.  "I lost, but I gave it what I had and did my best," he said with calm maturity.

In the final the athletes on both sides of Yamagata were black, but he showed no signs of being intimidated and was the second-fastest out of the blocks after the starting pistol with a reaction time of 0.157.  His acceleration was smooth and graceful, but after the halfway point the South African athlete who won pulled away to open a gap of 0.11 seconds.  With cold rain falling during the final Yamagata clocked 10.21, missing a chance to become Japan's first man sub-10.  "That was so-so," he commented post-race.  "I wanted to run a little better time than that, but I felt good."

In August Yamagata will be back in Russia for the Moscow World Championships.  "I want to sharpen things up and get stronger before the main event," he said.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Yuta Shitara Breaks Japanese Men's Half Marathon National Record in Berlin Marathon Tuneup at Usti nad Labem Half

A week after his 28:55 at the Birell Prague Grand Prix 10 km and just eight days out from the Berlin Marathon, Yuta Shitara (Honda) made the great leap forward, taking 8 seconds off Atsushi Sato's 2007 half marathon Japanese national record, finishing 8th at the Czech Republic's Usti nad Labem Half Marathon.

Shitara is probably most well-known outside Japan for going through halfway under 62 minutes during his marathon debut at this year's Tokyo Marathon and still ending up with a 2:09:27, but he's been turning heads in Japan since his second year at Toyo University when he broke a stage record at the 2012 Hakone Ekiden and outkicked the U.S.A.'s Dathan Ritzenhein to finish in 1:01:48 at the NYC Half two months later, until this year the fastest time ever by a Japanese man on U.S soil.

Three weeks before Tokyo this year he ran a 1:01:19 PB at the Marugame Half. Many people would call that a solid tuneup three weeks out from a serious marathon, but eight days? In P…

Hattori Becomes Third-Straight Japanese Men's Sydney Marathon Winner

Following within 24 hours of Yuki Kawauchi's win at the BMW Oslo Marathon and Yuta Shitara's national record at the Usti nad Labem Half Marathon, Shota Hattori (Honda) made it an overseas hat trick for men from Japan's Saitama prefecture when he won the Sydney Marathon in 2:15:16. Having debuted at February's Nobeoka Nishi Nippon Marathon with a 2:14:19 for 2nd, Hattori outlasted Ethiopian Werkuneh Seyoum Aboye, Kenyan Sammy Kigen Korir (Kenya) and compatriot Ryoma Takeuchi (Hitachi Butsuryu) to become the third-straight Japanese men's Sydney champ, winning by a margin of 20 seconds over Aboye.

Congratulations to Shota Hattori, male winner of the Blackmores Marathon – with a time of 02:15:16. #SydneyRunningFestivalpic.twitter.com/R47w8TCG2X — SydneyRunFestival (@officialbsrf) September 17, 2017
No Japanese women made the podium in the marathon, but in the accompanying half marathon both the men's and women's races saw Japanese runners-up. In the men's …

Ayuko Suzuki Leaves for Altitude Training in Boulder Motivated for the Marathon

2017 London World Championships 5000 m and 10000 m runner Ayuko Suzuki (25, Japan Post) left from Narita Airport on Sept. 18 for altitude training in Boulder, Colorado.

Two days earlier at a half marathon in Czech Republic, Yuta Shitara (25, Honda), like Suzuki born in 1991, broke the 10-year-old Japanese men's half marathon national record in a time of 1:00:17. "It's a big motivation to see an athlete the same age as me doing something like that," she said. Showing her determination to be one of her generation's leaders, she added, "I'll be 28 [at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics], right in my prime mentally and physically. I want to run big too."

In the leadup to the Tokyo Olympics Suzuki has the marathon in sight along with the track. "I need to run a half marathon and marathon somewhere once to check [how well they suit me]," she said. "Coach and I will be talking about it." If everything goes according to plan, December's Sanyo …