Skip to main content

A Quick Weekend Preview

by Brett Larner

A quick weekend preview as JRN is in international transit for the holidays.

  • The Nittai University Time Trials track series wraps up Saturday with its annual women-only edition featuring fast 3000 m, 5000 m and 10000 m heats.
  • Sunday sees the National High School Ekiden Championships go down, with both the boys' and girls' races broadcast live nationwide and commercial-free on NHK.  The level of competition is extremely high; based on track credentials the 2012 NCAA XC champions University of Oregon women's team would have struggled to make the top ten in last year's girls' race, while the boys' race features at least five high schoolers with 5000 m bests under 14:00.  The National High School Championships offer the first chance to see future greats, like Samuel Wanjiru in the past, in action.
  • The Dec. 23 national holiday on Monday is the date of the first running of the newly relaunched National University Women's Invitational Ekiden Championships on a course around the slopes of Mt. Fuji.  With a Seventh Stage featuring almost 200 m of climb and a date putting it in line with other major championship ekidens hopefully this newly updated event will help elevate the prestige of the university women's ekiden circuit. 
  • Last and definitely not least for U.S. fans, Dec. 23 also features the Sanyo Women's Road Race 10 km and half marathon, where American Olympian Desi Davila goes up against top-ranked Japanese women Yukiko Akaba (Team Hokuren), Mai Ito (Team Otsuka Seiyaku), Rei Ohara (Team Tenmaya), Yuko Watanabe (Team Edion) and many more.

Look for complete results and reports as the weekend goes on.

(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…