Skip to main content

Kawauchi and Men's Marathon Team Leave Narita for Moscow: "It's Do or Die. There is No Next Time."

http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20130811-00000019-nksports-spo
http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20130811-00000026-dal-spo

translated and edited by Brett Larner

Promising a race of "action," Japan's strongest amateur, civil servant runner Yuki Kawauchi (26, Saitama Pref. Gov't) left Tokyo's Narita Airport with other members of the men's marathon and javelin squads on Aug. 11 for Moscow where he will run his second-straight World Championships marathon.  The day before, women's marathoner Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) won a bronze medal, raising spirits and creating great excitement in the Japanese athletics world. Kawauchi, who finished 18th in 2:16:11 two years ago in the Daegu World Championships, was upbeat but serious, saying with determination, "Last time I blew it.  This time is going to be full of action.  I'm in good shape, and I am going to bring everything I've done and learned up to now into play.  I'm ready to achieve my goal of finishing in the top six."  With two incredible years behind him since Daegu and more than 300 races in his career to date, Kawauchi has plenty of reason to be confident.

The biggest fear is the heat in Moscow, where temperatures as high as 37 degrees were recorded during the marathon despite expectations that the city would be cool.  Kawauchi, who has had trouble with hot conditions in the past and suggested he may quit running summer marathons depending on his results in Moscow, was airily fatalistic as he said, "It's do or die with all my heart, that's the only way to go into this.  If it goes over 30 degrees, if it's 32, 33, 36, 37 degrees, even 40 degrees, it doesn't change anything.  I'm nervous about collapsing and heatstroke and will be careful about drinking at the water stations, but no matter how painful it gets, even if I'm crawling, this one is to the death.  If I blow it this time, there is no next time."

The World Championships men's marathon is on August 17 at 8:30 p.m. Japan time.

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kazami Breaks 100 km World Record at Lake Saroma

Running on the same course where Japan's Takahiro Sunada set the road 100 km world record of 6:13:33 twenty years ago, 2:17:23 marathoner Nao Kazamibested a deep and competitive field to win the Lake Saroma 100 km Ultramarathon in a world record 6:09:14.

Part of a front group of at least five that went through the marathon split in 2:33:36, on pace for 6:04:01, Kazami lost touch with the lead as rivals Koji Hayasaka and Takehiko Gyoba surged just before halfway to open a roughly 30 second lead that lasted until nearly 75 km. But in the last quarter of the race Kazami, a graduate of university ekiden powerhouse Komazawa University, was the only one who could sustain anything close to the early pace, overtaking Hayasaka and Gyoba before pulling away to open a lead of over 11 minutes. Kazami's mark took more than 4 minutes off the world record, and he also bettered the 100 km track world record of 6:10:20 set in 1978 well before he was born by the late Don Ritchie.
Trying to sta…

Boston Marathon Champion Yuki Kawauchi and Olympian Suguru Osako Join 2018 Bank of America Chicago Marathon Elite Field

A Bank of America Chicago Marathon press release

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon announced today that reigning Boston Marathon champion and “citizen runner” Yuki Kawauchi and 2016 Olympian and Nike Oregon Project runner Suguru Osako will join the elite competition as they both seek to become the first Chicago Marathon champion from Japan since Toshihiko Seko took the crown in 1986.

"I'm really happy to have the chance to race in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon and the Abbott World Marathon Majors," Kawauchi said. "I'm looking forward to running the same race where Toshinari Takaoka set the former national record and so many other great Japanese athletes have run well. My results in the other American Abbott World Marathon Majors races, Boston and New York, were pretty good, and I'll do everything I can to line up in Chicago ready to produce good results there too."

“Yuki and Suguru are exciting additions to our elite field,” said Executive Rac…

Kawauchi Wins 7th-Straight Okinoshima 50 km

Running the Okinoshima 50 km Ultramarathon on his late father's home island of Oki for the eighth year in a row, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) ran 2:52:55 to win it for the seventh straight time. Starting strong on the relatively flat first 10 km where he clocked 33:26, low-2:47 pace, Kawauchi slowed to just over 2:50 pace on the course's toughest hills between 10 and 30 km. A sub-2:50 was still in range at that point, but over the last 20 km he faded further to finish in the second-slowest of his Okinoshima wins.



The day before the race Kawauchi paced children in Okinoshima's kids' run. Following that he greeted participants and local supporters at an expo event where he was hailed onstage as the Boston Marathon winner. As per his usual routine, his next race will be the July 1 Gold Coast Marathon in Australia.

© 2018 Brett Larner, all rights reserved