Skip to main content

2013 International Chiba Ekiden Leads Weekend Action (updated)

by Brett Larner



Saturday's 2013 edition of the International Chiba Ekiden tops this weekend's list of international long distance action, with thirteen mixed men's and women's teams from around the world competing over Chiba's six stage, 42,195 km course.  Two-time defending champion Kenya returns with a team led by 2010 and 2013 World XC women's gold medalist Emily Chebet Muge and 2010 World XC men's gold medalist Joseph Ebuya.  Japan provides the toughest competition, with a team including all three men from the Moscow World Championships 10000 m, Suguru Osako (Waseda Univ.), Yuki Sato (Team Nissin Shokuhin) and Tsuyoshi Ugachi (Team Konica Minolta) along with their Moscow women's 5000 m teammate Misaki Onishi (Team Sekisui Kagaku).  2012's 3rd-placer U.S.A. returns a quality squad of domestic talent but should again face tough challenges for the podium from the team it beat to get there last year, Russia, the 2008 Beijing Olympics 1500 m silver medalist Nick Willis-led New Zealand team, and the 2010 Chiba-winning Japanese University Select Team.  Canada, hosts Chiba Prefecture, and, with the great Irina Mikitenko as an alternate, Germany, make up the rest of the upper end of the field.

Fuji TV's live broadcast of the 2013 International Chiba Ekiden starting at 1:00 p.m. may be available to overseas viewers via Keyhole TV or other sources, but look also for JRN's live coverage of the race via Twitter @JRNLive.  Click here for a more detailed field listing and preview.  Complete start lists with running order are available here.

A breakdown of the best matchups on each stage based on the current starting lists:

First Stage (men, 5.0 km)
Joseph Ebuya (Kenya) - 12:51.00 - 2010 World XC gold medalist
Suguru Osako (Japan) - 13:20.80 - 1st, 2013 Nat'l Univ. Ekiden 2nd Stage (13.2 km) - 38:08
Will Leer (U.S.A.) - 13:21.55
Nick Willis (New Zealand) - 13:27.54 - 2008 Olympics 1500 m silver medalist
Yegor Nikolayev (Russia) - 13:35.33
Kenta Murayama (Univ. Select Team) - 13:47.19 - CR, 2013 Nat'l Univ. Ekiden 4th Stage (14.0 km) - 39:24; CR, 2013 Izumo Ekiden 3rd Stage (7.9 km) - 22:36

Second Stage (women, 5.0 km)
Lucy Van Dalen (New Zealand) - 15:21.08
Nicole Sifuentes (Canada) - 15:27.58
Ayuko Suzuki (Univ. Select Team) - 15:31.45 - 2013 World Univ. Games 10000 m gold medalist
Caroline Nyagakwa (Kenya) - 15:35.35
Risa Kikuchi (Japan) - 15:36.28 - 1st, 2013 East Japan Women's Ekiden 2nd Stage (4.0 km) - 12:52
Gulshat Fazlitdinova (Russia) - 15:43.58

Third Stage (men, 10.0 km)
Tsuyoshi Ugachi (Japan) - 27:40.69 - 2nd, 2013 E. Japan Corp. Men's Ekiden 2nd Stage (15.3 km) - 44:20
Girma Mecheso (U.S.A.) - 27:52.38
Evgeny Rybakov (Russia) - 28:05.75
Dylan Wykes (Canada) - 28:12.82
Daniel Muteti (Kenya) - 13:08.00
Zane Robertson (New Zealand) - 13:13.83 - 1st, 2012 Int'l Chiba Ekiden 1st Stage (5.9 km) - 13:29

Fourth Stage (women, 5.0 km)
Esther Ndiema (Kenya) - 14:57.16
Misaki Onishi (Japan) - 15:21.73 - 1st, 2013 Fukui Super Ladies Ekiden 1st Stage (6.0 km) - 19:08
Maren Kock (Germany) - 15:27.65
Viktoriya Pohoryelska (Ukraine) - 15:28.35
Kellyn Johnson (U.S.A.) - 15:31.66
Natalya Aristarkhova (Russia) - 8:50.76 (3000 m)

Fifth Stage (men, 10.0 km)
Edwin Mokua (Kenya) - 27:38 (road)
Yuki Sato (Japan) - 27:38.25 - CR, 2013 E. Japan Corp. Men's Ekiden 2nd Stage (15.3 km) - 44:18
Sean Quigley (U.S.A.) - 27:50.78
Anatoliy Rybakov (Russia) - 28:06.54
Yuma Hattori (Univ. Select Team) - 28:22.43 - CR, 2013 Izumo Ekiden 5th Stage (6.4 km) - 17:54
Marius Ionescu (Romania) - 29:01.83

Sixth Stage (women, 7.195 km)
Emily Chebet Muge (Kenya) - 30:47.02 - 2010, 2013 World XC gold medalist
Sayuri Oka (Japan) - 32:06.79 - 1st, 2013 W. Japan Corp. Women's Ekiden 3rd Stage (10.2 km) - 32:29
Laura Thweatt (U.S.A.) - 32:15.51
Corinna Harrer (Germany) - 32:30.41
Nanaka Izawa (Univ. Select Team) - 32:39.31 - 1st, 2013 Nat'l Univ. Women's Ekiden 5th Stage (9.2 km) - 29:53
Lanni Marchant (Canada) - 32:46 (road) - NR holder, marathon - 2:28:00



Chiba is not the only noteworthy race this weekend, though.  At the southern end of the country, the Kyushu Jitsugyodan Ekiden closes out the corporate men's regional qualifying for the New Year Ekiden corporate men's national championships.  The Asahi Kasei team is the perpetual favorite in the Kyushu region, but the Koichi Morishita-coached Toyota Kyushu team, featuring 2013 New York City Marathon 6th-placer Masato Imai and 2013 Great North Run 6th-placer Ryuji Watanabe, looks set to give them a scare both this weekend and on Jan. 1.  At least one major East Japan corporate team's head coach has picked Toyota Kyushu to win the big show, and the push for that title will start this weekend.  Also in the southwestern half of the country is the 75th Kansai University Men's Ekiden Championships, relocated this year to the Tango peninsula from its past site at Lake Biwa.

On the calendar in the eastern half of the country are the Kanto Region University Men's 10000 m Time Trials meet and the Fuchu Tamagawa Half Marathon, both in Tokyo, and Saitama's Koedo Kawagoe Half Marathon.  The Kanto meet has developed into a chance for runners bound for the sport's biggest event, the Jan. 2-3 Hakone Ekiden, to boost their 10000 m bests ahead of their coaches' final selections for their Hakone rosters. Last year the meet featured scholarships for any Kanto region university man who ran a sub-29 PB at the meet, an incentive that spurred the top fifteen men in the A-heat to go under the 29-minute mark, all but one in PB times.  With a high-quality entry list and a stunning rate of development across the region this year's meet could outshine those results.

Fuchu used to be the premier fall half marathon on the Japanese calendar for the country's university men, but with the advent of the Ageo City Half Marathon Fuchu's stock has fallen in recent years.  Still, each year the race features a quality contingent from nearby 2013 Izumo Ekiden and National University Ekiden champion Komazawa University and runners from a smattering of other schools, so the potential for a quality race is still there.  The Koedo Kawagoe half is a new event in just its fourth running.  A week after running the fourth-fastest half marathon time of his career in Ageo, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) will be lining up in Kawagoe to get a piece of the 1:05:33 course record set last year by Sho Matsumoto (Nikkei Business) before heading to Fukuoka next week.

(c) 2013 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kisaisa Wins Second-Straight Yosenkai Half Marathon in 1:00:44, Komazawa University Averages Ten Men Under 1:03

The Hakone Ekiden Yosenkai is the qualifying race for Japan's most prestigious road race, the Jan. 2-3 Hakone Ekiden. University men's teams in the Tokyo area that didn't make the top ten at Hakone the year before square off in Tokyo's Showa Kinen Park with teams of up to twelve. The top ten score, their cumulative times determining the team's placing with the top eleven teams advancing and high-placing individuals from schools that don't make the cut rounded up to form a select team.

The Yosenkai has long been the world's #1 20 km road race by a wide margin, with winning times among the fastest in the world for the distance and the same kind of incredible depth seen at November's Ageo City Half Marathon and March's National University Men's Half Marathon. In light of changes in the IAAF's ranking system and the level of performance at the Yosenkai, this year organizers took the historic step of changing it from its traditional distance to …

Comparing D1 Pre-Nationals and the Hakone Ekiden Qualifier

With both American and Japanese university students well into their fall seasons, two major events took place Saturday. Near Madison, Wisconsin, the D1 Pre-Nationals cross-country meet and in Tachikawa, Tokyo the Hakone Ekiden Qualifier half marathon. At Pre-Nats men ran 8 km on a looping XC course with a maximum elevation difference of around 30 m. The field was split into two main races, Cardinal and White, with a total of 69 teams, and an additional Grey race handling some overflow. Teams ran up to seven members, with the top five scoring on cumulative placing. A total of 474 athletes finished the two main races, with five DNF.

At the Hakone Ekiden Qualifier, known as the Yosenkai, the distance was lengthened from 20 km to the half marathon distance this year, on a paved net-uphill course with a maximum elevation difference of about 20 m, most of that in the hilly final 8 km through Showa Kinen Park. 39 second-tier teams fielded up to twelve runners, with the top ten scoring on cu…

28:45 High Schoolers and More - Weekend Track Roundup

The IAAF has unilaterally declared track season over. But in Japan fall track is an integral part of ekiden season training, and it's not unusual to see many athletes drop their best 3000 m, 5000 m and 10000 m times of the year between October and December. Case in point, this weekend.

The biggest news came at Saturday's Nighter Time Trials in Nagasaki, where Keiho H.S. 11th-grader Hiroto Hayashida ran 28:45.75 for 6th in the 10000 m, all-time #8 among Japanese high school boys and #2 among 11th-graders. "Thank you to everyone who supported me!" Hayashida said on Twitter post-race. "I want to take this and apply to it ekiden season now." Geoffrey Gichia (Daiichi Kogyo Univ.) won in 28:36.36, with Jakarta Asian Games marathon gold medalist Hiroto Inoue (MHPS) 2nd in 28:37.27.

ナイター記録会(諫早)

林田洋翔選手(瓊浦2)
28:45.75

県高校記録更新おめでとうございます🎉 pic.twitter.com/V7navKw6HQ — manamin (@kinokonoko0916) October 13, 2018
At Niigata's Autumn Time Trials a unique women's 50…