Skip to main content

'Paul Kuira Pulls a Ryan Hall'

http://www.letsrun.com/news/2015/02/zane-robertson-pulls-ryan-hall-alberto-salazar-track-fields-bill-belichick-will-claye-not-canadian-good-sport-tweet-week/

translated by Brett Larner

Kenya’s “Ryan Hall Moment” – Paul Kuira’s Dream Comes True

Last week, Kenya’s Paul Kuira pulled an absolute stunner, as in his half-marathon debut he ran a 59:47 to win the Marugame Half-Marathon, making him the first Kenyan athlete and and [sic] first non-African-based runner under 60:00 this year (New Zealand's Zane Robertson has also done it).

When we saw the result, we instantly thought, “Wow, Kenya has found their Ryan Hall.”

Paul after the Finish of His 59:47 Half via @mi102014 (click for large image)

The parallels between the two are striking. Both come from unconventional training backgrounds and both have spent a considerable time at altitude. Hall great up [sic] in Big Bear, California which is at 6,700 feet and did twenty mile runs as a high schooler and ten mile tempo runs (For an interesting LRC interview with Ryan as a high schooler in 2000 click here). Paul, at the age 16, in search of being the best in the world, moved to Japan by himself to train and has lived for the last nine years in Japan or Kenya at altitude pursing [sic] his dream. Both Ryan Hall and Paul Kuira initially tried to make their mark at 1500 before reluctantly moving up to moderate success at 5000, before becoming a totally unexpected sensation in the half-marathon.

The parallels between the two are eerie:

Hall ran 3:42.70 at 18, 13:16.03 at 22 and 59:43 in his half marathon debut at 24.
Kuira ran 3:44.21 at 18, 13:22.38 at 20, and 59:47 in his half marathon debut at 25.

It will be fun to see if Paul goes on to have great success at the 26.2 distance in the years to come.

Translator's note: In a related article on Marugame, Alberto Stretti wrote, "Last Sunday in Marugame (Japan) he did one of the most amazing and fast debuts on halfmarathon in the history...he ran 59.47 at the first time on distance showing everyone another time his growing talent.."  Stretti went on to point out in capital letters that he was not speaking about Kuira's world leading course record-setting 59:47 winning debut.

photo (c) 2015 mi102014, all rights reserved

Comments

Anonymous said…
hahaha this made my day
TokyoRacer said…
Unbelievable, and disappointing, that Let's Run could write an article about the race and not even mention that Robertson got beat by Kuira. I guess only white guys count with them.
Anonymous said…
Zanes is significant in NZ, kuira's means nothing in Kenya. I doubt it's making highlights in Kenya, why should it in the US?
Brett Larner said…
I don't know, because your president is Kenyan?
Tenkrunner said…
Our President is American

Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi Brothers Repeat Father's Day Okinoshima Ultra Sweep

For the second year in a row brothers Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) and Yoshiki Kawauchi (unattached) returned to their late father's home island of Okinoshima to dominate the Father's Day Okinoshima Ultramarathon 50 km and 100 km.

Yoshiki, the younger of the two, ran the 100 km for the third time. In his 2015 debut he suffered mightily on the way in to an 11:21:52 finish. Returning with a year's more experience in 2016, he won in a course record 7:20:31. This time he was out fast in search of his first sub-7 clocking, averaging 4:00/km at 40 km through the hilliest part of the course before starting to slow. At 60 km he was still on track for a sub-7, splitting 4:07:10, but when he hit the series of three >100 m elevation gain climbs just after 60 km sub-7 slipped out of reach. Still well under course pace with a 7:12:27 projection at 80 km Yoshiki struggled on the last 100 m climb just over 5 km from the finish, coming in for the win in 7:29:06. Yoshiki has…

Ageo City Half Marathon Leads Weekend Action - Preview

by Brett Larner

Rainy weather lies ahead for a busy weekend of racing across the country.  Track is a part of the calender from April through December, and this weekend features several large time trial meets including the Shizuoka Long Distance Time Trials Meet and, closer to Tokyo, the Nittai University Time Trials Meet.  Men's 5000 m is the focus at Nittai with 37 separate heats in one day, the fastest heat led by 12 Japan-based Africans including Bedan Karoki (DeNA RC), Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) and Paul Kuira (Team Konica Minolta).

The main action this weekend, however, happens on the roads, and there's no question that the Ageo City Half Marathon is the main event.  Ageo, the race that university coaches use to thin their rosters ahead of deciding their lineups for January's Hakone Ekiden, is one of two Japanese half marathons vying for the title of world's greatest half, locked in a duel with March's National University Half Marathon to produce the d…

List of Japanese Athletes Qualified for 2017 London World Championships

It's 50 days to go to the 2017 London World Championships and just over a week out from the 101st Japanese National Track and Field Championships in Osaka where the country's best will be trying to earn places on the London team. Athletes will have the chance to chase standards in the weeks after Nationals, but excluding the marathon, walks and combined events, all of which are held separately from the National Championships, the following is a list of Japanese athletes already holding valid qualifying marks for London.

Things are looking very thin right now, with only the men's 100 m, women's 5000 m and women's 10000 m currently capable of fielding complete contingents, although at least the men's 200 m, men's pole vault and conceivably the men's 10000 m could join that short list. With sixteen women currently holding the London standard the women's 10000 m looks to be the toughest to make even if marathon squad members Yuka Ando (Suzuki Hamamatsu…