Skip to main content

Ikegami Makes Waves at Half Marathon in Tokyo

http://www.kyoto-np.co.jp/top/article/20140121000033

translated and edited by Brett Larner

Kameoka native and long distance runner Hideyuki Ikegami (20, Kyoto T&F Assoc.), won a half marathon in Tokyo on Jan. 12.  In scoring the win he took down famed "civil servant runner" Yuki Kawauchi (26, Saitama Pref. Gov't).  Ikegami is only a second-year at Kyoto Kyoiku University but is already forging his own way of doing things outside the school's track and field team in pursuit of his dream: "I want to take on the world in the marathon."

At the Jan. 12 Tanigawa Mari Half Marathon, Ikegami took more than two minutes off his PB to run his 1:03:09 winning time.  In the middle part of the race he threw in a long surge to break Kawauchi, opening a convincing 1:08 lead over him.  It was only Ikegami's third half marathon but a major upset, and post-race he was surrounded by reporters. "Kawauchi always looks like he's in pain when he runs," Ikegami told them while reviewing the race, "but this time his face looked really exhausted so I think I only really won by making a sneaky move."

At Rakunan H.S. Ikegami ran in the National High School Ekiden Championships three years in a row, and at Kyoto Kyoiku University his achievements have included winning the Kansai Region University Track and Field Championships 10000 m and half marathon.  But in October he quit the school's team.  With academics as his highest priority, he gets up at 5:20 a.m. every day to follow a self-imposed regimen of two hours of training every morning and evening.  "I wanted to make the mistakes that would help me grow without having to worrying about the restrictions of being on a team, so I chose to be independent," he said.

At the end of last year he passed the test to join Team Arata, the athlete development project established by London Olympics marathoner Arata Fujiwara (32, Miki House). The project pays members a training stipend based on their results at amateur races and other events.  Project member Hiroaki Onishi (30), a Kyoto Sangyo University graduate living in Kyoto, gave a positive evaluation of Ikegami's performance, saying, "He has been training and developing by himself, and that is exactly why he was able to beat Kawauchi that way."

"Like Kawauchi, whose running is an extension of a hobby and something that he does because he loves it from the heart, and Fujiwara, who has put his life and livelihood on the line to risk a career as in independent pro, my goal is success as a runner who doesn't believe in the established system," Ikegami said.  He plans to run his marathon debut this winter.

Comments

Metts said…
I'm looking forward to seeing what he and the other independents can do in the future. Looks very exciting.

Most-Read This Week

Tokyo Experiments With Spraying Water Along 2020 Marathon Course to Combat Heat

As part of its measures to deal with the hot conditions expected at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, on Aug. 13 the Tokyo Metropolitan Government conducted an experiment to measure the effects on pavement surface temperature of spraying the road surface with water. Data from the experiments were released to the media.

The experiment was conducted from 4:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. along a 120 m section of sidewalk along Uchibori Street in the Imperial Palace's outer gardens in Chiyoda Ward.  In the experiment, open-ended tubes used in agricultural work eres placed at the edge of the sidewalk  to supply water. Surface temperature readings were taken every 30 minutes for three different experimental scenarios:
spraying water beginning at 4:00 a.m.spraying water beginning at 7:00 a.m.not spraying any water The experiment found that where water had been sprayed, the road surface temperature remained in the 27 to 29˚C range even when the air temperature exceeded 30˚C. Where no wa…

On Broadcast Commentary

It's been 122 days since the 122nd Boston Marathon. Of what the two exceptional people who won that day accomplished, WilliamShakespeare summed it up better than any other commentator in his Sonnet 122:

Beyond all date, even to eternity;
     Or at the least, so long as brain and heart
     Have faculty by nature to subsist;
     Till each to razed oblivion yield his part
     Of thee, thy record never can be miss'd.

What else needs to be said? But the other thing that remains from that day is, of course, this:

Worst punditry ever? #Yukipic.twitter.com/AwjeuZDtOt — Xempo Running (@xempouk) April 16, 2018
In the 122 days since Boston this clip has been on my mind a lot. The commentary here by Larry Rawson and Al Trautwig was exceptionally bad, but it wasn't unique to them and highlighted many of the problems with marathon TV broadcasts and especially their hosts and commentators. I'm fortunate to live in Japan where the announcers for the countless marathon live TV broadcas…

The Asian Games Marathon Course: An Early Morning Start for Loops of the City's Main Roads

Its skyline punctuated by skyscrapers demonstrating Indonesia's economic ascension. A lush plaza holding a famed tower, the symbol of the metropolis. When Jakarta hosts the Asian Games next week its marathon course will loop around the city's main streets, starting and finishing from the Games' main venue, Gelola Bungarno Stadium. In light of the heat and humidity of the races' summertime dates, Aug. 25 for men and 26 for women, the marathons will get off to early starts at 6:00 a.m. local time, 8:00 a.m. Japan time.

Leaving the stadium for the main streets, the Jakarta course turns to the north before turning back. Each of the two loops is about 20 km, both mostly flat and straight with the only hills coming in the gentle climbs onto and off the waterway bridges that dot the route. At a rotary about 5 km from the start, runners are greeted by a statue of a man and woman built in 1962 the last time Jakarta hosted the Asian Games. Running on amid the highrises, around …