translated and edited by Brett Larner
The official 2014 Osaka Marathon theme song "42.195 km" by Kobukuro.
The organizing committee of the 4th Osaka Marathon on Oct. 26 have announced this year's 23-member elite field. The men's race features all three champions crowned so far in race history led by last year's winner Jackson Limo (Kenya), who improved his PB to 2:09:06 at this year's Paris Marathon. Seeking to stop him from become the first man in Osaka history to defend his title are Osaka's first winner Elijah Sang (Kenya) and second winner Ser-Od Bat-Ochir (Mongolia/Team NTN), who won last year's Hofu Yomiuri Marathon in a PB 2:09:00.
Japan's hopes lie with Satoshi Osaki (NTT Nishi Nihon), holder of a 2:08:36 best, and 2012 runner-up Yasuyuki Nakamura (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC). 2009 World Championships marathon 7th-place finisher Yuri Kano (Kyoto T&F Assoc.) leads the women's field. Her main competition comes from Kumi Ogura (Kochi T&F Assoc.), who ran a PB 2:34:01 at this year's Nagoya Women's Marathon, and Hisae Yoshimatsu (Shunan City Hall), whose best of 2:28:49 is the second-fastest in the field.
Aiming to help develop and cultivate upcoming talent, the "Hope Program" features two men and one woman led by Toshiyuki Fujimatsu (Crest AC). Guest runners include 1964 Tokyo Olympics marathoner Toru Terasawa and 1991 Tokyo International Women's Marathon winner Mari Tanigawa.
4th Osaka Marathon Elite Field
click here for complete field listing
Satoshi Osaki (Team NTT Nishi Nihon) - 2:08:36 (2008 Biwako)
Ser-Od Bat-Ochir (Mongolia/Team NTN) - 2:09:00 (2013 Hofu Yomiuri)
Jackson Limo (Kenya) - 2:09:06 (2014 Paris)
Elijah Sang (Kenya) - 2:10:13 (2007 Frankfurt)
Stepan Kiselev (Russia) - 2:11:28 (2014 Zurich)
Kota Noguchi (Tahara AC) -- 2:12:24 (2012 Fukuoka Int'l)
Sho Matsumoto (Nikkei Business Service) - 2:13:38 (2013 Nobeoka Nishi Nippon)
Shingo Igarashi (Team Subaru) - 2:13:46 (2011 Nobeoka Nishi Nippon)
Yasuyuki Nakamura (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:14:41 (2013 Tokyo)
Yusei Nakao (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:14:43 (2009 Tokyo)
Yasushi Yamamoto (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:15:15 (2013 Biwako)
Kenichi Jiromaru (Tokyo T&F Assoc.) - 2:15:24 (2014 Biwako)
Kazuyoshi Shimozato (Team Komori Corp.) - 2:16:23 (2012 Tokyo)
Toshiyuki Fujimatsu (Crest AC) - 2:18:36 (2014 Tokyo)
Yuri Kano (Kyoto T&F Assoc.) - 2:24:27 (2008 Tokyo Int'l Women's)
Hisae Yoshimatsu (Shunan City Hall) - 2:28:49 (2002 Hokkaido)
Maryna Damantsevich (Belarus) - 2:31:29 (2012 Kosice)
Kumi Ogura (Kochi T&F Assoc.) - 2:34:01 (2013 Nagoya Women's)
Chika Tawara (Fukuoka T&F Assoc.) - 2:40:00 (2013 Hofu Yomiuri)
Haruka Yamaguchi (AC Kita) - 2:41:56 (2014 Beppu-Oita Mainichi)