Skip to main content

World-Class 19-Year-Old Reia Iwade Features at Hyogo Relay Carnival

translated by Brett Larner

19-Year-Old Big Hope Reia Iwade (Team Noritz) Riding the Wave to Hyogo Relay Carnival Grand Prix Women's 10000 m

Just 19, Iwade will be showing off her best stuff on home ground in Hyogo prefecture this weekend.  In her first year in the corporate leagues she went through tremendous growth that took her all the way to March's World Half Marathon Championships in Copenhagen, Denmark.  Ahead of her first serious 10000 m, Iwade is strongly motivated as she says, "I want to earn the right to wear the Rising Sun again as soon as possible."

Iwade was born in Mie prefecture.  She was the star runner at Aichi prefecture's Toyokawa H.S., and after graduating she joined Hyogo's Noritz corporate team where she began to make an impact on the ekiden circuit.  A few days after her 19th birthday, at December's Sanyo Women's Road Race half marathon she ran a Japanese junior national record 1:09:45.  Coming just eight days after she finished only 12th on the National Corporate Women's Ekiden Championships first stage, she says, "I was still tired but at the same time having had that result made me raise my game in Sanyo."  She ran with the lead pack until 10 km, and, giving herself passing marks for the second half, she says, "I was able to push myself."

Over the winter Iwade trained with Mari Ozaki and other teammates preparing for marathons, building up a mileage base of over a thousand kilometers a month.  In her international debut at the World Half she lost touch with the lead pack in the first half, finishing 19th as the third Japanese woman but still helping win the team bronze medal.  "I could tell how inexperienced and underdeveloped I still am," she says in a strict self-evaluation.  "I have to build up the mental toughness you need to run a PB overseas."

Depending on how her summer training goes, Iwade is eyeing November's Yokohama International Women's Marathon.  "This is the time when she's growing most rapidly," says her coach Yoshihiko Morioka.  "I want her to become one of the best."  As a measure of her development their target for the Hyogo Relay Carnival is the National Championships A-standard of 32:30.00.  "I want to run an aggressive race, get the time, and leave people saying, 'Wow!'" Iwade says with enthusiasm.

The Japanese national record of 30:48.89 was set in 2002 by Yoko Shibui (Team Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo).  Of the all-time ten fastest 10000 m times run by Japanese women, places 2-10 are all occupied by Kayoko Fukushi (Team Wacoal) and Hitomi Niiya (Team Universal Entertainment).  These three are the only Japanese women to have ever broken 31 minutes.  At last year's Hyogo Relay Carnival Rei Ohara (Team Tenmaya) was 2nd overall in 32:32.15, the first time in 18 years that the top Japanese woman in that race did not break 32:30.  With Fukushi having shifted focus to the marathon and Niiya, 5th in the 10000 m at last summer's Moscow World Championships, having retired this year,  the pedestal is empty and waiting for the next big star.

Top Ten Japanese Women's 10000 m Performances of 2013

1. Hitomi Niiya (Team Univ. Ent.) - 30:56.70
2. Ayumi Hagiwara (Team Uniqlo) - 31:45.29
3. Kasumi Nishihara (Team Yamada Denki) - 32:05.88
4. Yuka Takashima (Team Denso) - 32:06.70
5. Sayuri Oka (Team Daihatsu) - 32:06.79
6. Mai Ito (Team Otsuka Seiyaku) - 32:07.41
7. Yuko Shimizu (Team Sekisui Kagaku) - 32:07.70
8. Rei Ohara (Team Tenmaya) - 32:08.73
9. Yuko Mizuguchi (Team Denso) - 32:10.15
10. Risa Takenaka (Team Shiseido) - 32:10.66


Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi and Kiyara Live Up to Expectations With Wan Jin Shi Wins

Returning to Taiwan's Wan Jin Shi Marathon after having first run it in 2016, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) ran 2:14:12 to score his fourth-straight marathon win in a third-straight wire-to-wire solo performance. Choosing the hilly Wan Jin Shi Marathon as his final main tuneup for next month's Boston Marathon, Kawauchi came out swinging, leading an all-African pack of seven by almost 10 seconds after the tough uphill opening 5 km and stretching that out to over two minutes by the turnaround point at halfway.

On track to break the 2:13:05 course record by more than two minutes. under sunny skies with temperatures climbing to 22C and nearly 80% humidity Kawauchi began to slow incrementally. Behind him, Johnstone Kibet Maiyo (Kenya) and Aredome Tiuyay Degefa (Ethiopia) separated from the chase pack and began to push each other in pursuit of the top spot. With every 5 km split the gap to Kawauchi narrowed. At 40 km Maiyo threw down to get rid of Degefa, blasting the dow…

Kawauchi and Kiyara Headline Wan Jin Shi Marathon

Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) returns to Taiwan's Wan Jin Shi Marathon this Sunday for his marathon of the post-Yuta Shitara era. The runner-up in Wan Jin Shi in 2016, Kawauchi is ranked #1 in the field and comes to Wan Jin Shi with wins in his last three marathons but faces a solid field including fellow sub-2:10 man Peter Kiplagat Sitenei, last year's runner-up Tsegaye Debele (Ethiopia), and the only man to beat him last time around, 2016 winner and course record holder William Chebon Chebor (Kenya). Kawauchi plans to use the hilly race as a tune-up for his main marathon of the spring season, April's Boston Marathon.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, Rael Kiyara Nguriatukei (Kenya), winner of the 2012 Hamburg Marathon before being stripped of her title and suspended for a positive post-race test for norandrosterone, has the fastest recent time in the women's field with a 2:26:22 winning time at last year's Chongqing Marathon. Close behind is Chemtai …

Katanishi Scores Best-Ever Japanese Collegiate Placing at United Airlines NYC Half

Wearing bib #21 on his 21st birthday, 2017 World University Games half marathon gold medalist Kei Katanishi (Komazawa University) turned in the best-ever Japanese collegiate placing at the United Airlines NYC Half, taking 7th in 1:03:05 just 26 seconds off the win.

Katanishi and his Komazawa teammate Shogo Ise earned invites to the NYC Half by taking the top two Japanese collegiate spots at last November's Ageo City Half Marathon. Off the tougher new New York course both Katanishi and Ise ran in the lead group for the first two-thirds of the race, Ise near the front and Katanishi biding his time at the back of the pack. When the first real move came on the uphill approaching Times Square Katanishi was quick to reposition himself into the top three just off the shoulder of leader Dathan Ritzenhein (U.S.A.), staying in the action and looking smooth through the first set of Central Park hills. "I just took the early part easy and watched the others and what was going," Kat…