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Kyudenko Runs Down Ritsumeikan Uji for Win at 25th Kita-Kyushu Women's Ekiden

by Brett Larner

The Kyudenko corporate women's team ran down defending champion Ritsumeikan Uji H.S. thanks to a stage-winning run from anchor Misaki Kato, coming back from a 31-second deficit to win the 25th Kita-Kyushu Invitational Women's Ekiden by 10 seconds. Despite a 18:11 course record run on the 5.9 km Second Stage by Kenyan Sally Chepyego, Kyudenko fell steadily behind Ritsumeikan Uji H.S. over the 32.8 km course's first four stages.  31 seconds behind by the time she started, Kato was obliged to run 11.7 km while the high school teams had the anchor stage split into 4.9 km and 6.8 km sections with two different runners.  Ritsumeikan Uji's Aki Manabe and Yuka Sato both ran the fastest times on those two segments, but Kato, on a steady rise since a sub-71 half marathon debut at last September's Great North Run, was simply too much for them to handle.  Near the end of the race Kato overtook Sato, opening 10 seconds in the home straight to seal Kyudenko's win in 1:46:01.  2013 National Corporate Women's Ekiden champion team Denso was a distant 3rd in 1:47:47.

Kato told JRN she next plans to race February's National Corporate Half Marathon Championships, where she will be among the major contenders for a place on the Japanese team for March's Copenhagen World Half Marathon.

25th Kita-Kyushu Invitational Women's Ekiden
Kita-Kyushu, 1/19/14
open division: 7 teams, 5 stages, 32.8 km
H.S. division: 14 teams, 6 stages, 32.8 km
click here for complete results

Top Team Results - Open Division
1. Kyudenko - 1:46:01
2. Denso -- 1:47:47
3. Toto - 1:48:16
4. Tenmaya - 1:48:53
5. Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo - 1:49:06

Top Team Results - High School Division
1. Ritsumeikan Uji H.S. - 1:46:11
2. Kojokan H.S. - 1:49:30
3. Saikyo H.S. - 1:50:06
4. Suma Gakuen H.S. - 1:50:23
5. Kita-Kyushu Municipal H.S. - 1:51:13

Stage Best Performances
First Stage (4.2 km) - Yui Fukuda (Suma Gakuen H.S.) - 13:34
Second Stage (5.9 km) - Sally Chepyego (Kenya/Team Kyudenko) - 18:11 - CR tie
Third Stage (5.1 km) - Sayaka Takarada (Kojokan H.S.) - 16:28
Fourth Stage (5.9 km) - Tomoka Katada (Ritsumeikan Uji H.S.) - 19:32
Fifth Stage - open (11.7 km) - Misaki Kato (Team Kyudenko) - 36:55
Fifth Stage - H.S. (4.9 km) - Aki Manabe (Ritsumeikan Uji H.S.) - 16:18
Sixth Stage - H.S. (6.8 km) - Yuka Sako (Ritsumeikan Uji H.S.) - 21:18

(c) 2014 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

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The Kawauchi Counter

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Guinness Certifies Kawauchi's World Record 78 Career Sub-2:20 Marathons After Half Marathon in Panda Costume

Known as the Civil Servant Runner, Saitama Prefectural Government employee Yuki Kawauchi's career record of 78 sub-2:20 marathons was officially recognized as the Guinness World Record at a ceremony in his hometown of Kuki, Saitama on Mar. 25.  Raised in Kuki, Kawauchi began working for the Saitama Prefectural Government after graduating from university. Running while working full-time as a civil servant, he has qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic trial race.

Earlier this month on the 18th Kawauchi ran Taiwan's Wan Jin Shi Marathon, winning in 2:14:12. His 78th time running faster than 2 hours and 20 minutes, his achievement was certified as the official Guinness World Record. He actually broke the previous record on Jan. 1 at the Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon in the U.S.A. with his 76th sub-2:20 but followed up with two performances, one in February and the other last week, before Guinness could ratify the record.

The official recognition ceremony took place Mar. 2…

“The Miracle in Fukuoka” - Real Talk From Yuki Kawauchi on “Taking on the World” (part 1)

http://sports.yahoo.co.jp/column/detail/201701120002-spnavi

translated by Brett Larner

Ahead of his nomination to the London World Championships Marathon team, Sportsnavi published a three-part series of writings by Yuki Kawauchi on what it took for him to make the team, his hopes for London, and his views on the future of Japanese marathoning.  With his place on the London team announced on Mar. 17, JRN will publish an English translation of the complete series over the next three days. See Sportsnavi's original version linked above for more photos. Click here for part two, "Bringing All My Experience Into Play in London," or here for part three, "The Lessons of the Past Are Not 'Outdated.'"


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