Skip to main content

Kebaso and Matsumoto Win Shibetsu Half Marathon

by Brett Larner

With the demise of the Sapporo International Half Marathon, Hokkaido's Shibetsu Half Marathon has taken on a bigger role as a major domestic summer half marathon, especially for members of Japanese national teams for international championships.  Despite generally hot conditions and the apparent cutting of the elite women's 10 km this year, both the women's and men's races featured solid fields.

Kenyan Winfredah Kebaso, the main support of the fledgling Nitori corporate women's team, easily took the win in 1:12:36 over Mai Ito (Team Otsuka Seiyaku), one of the three Japanese women in the marathon at next month's Beijing World Championships.  Ito was a distant 2nd behind Kebaso in 1:14:47 but had little trouble holding off teammate Yui Okada, 3rd in 1:15:13.  Runners from the Noritz corporate team featured prominently, taking 4 of the top 10 places, while Nitori's Remi Nakazato continued her comeback from a cancer diagnosis last November, taking 7th in 1:16:53.  Mei Matsuyama (Meijo Univ.) was the top collegiate at 9th in 1:18:13.

The Toyota men's corporate team dominated the men's race with 3 of the top 4 places and 4 inside the top 10.  Toyota's Kenta Matsumoto took the win in 1:03:56, a rare sub-1:04 in Shibetsu, with teammate Tsubasa Hayakawa outrunning Masaki Ito (Team Konica Minolta) by 5 seconds for 2nd in 1:04:20.  2014 Asian Games marathon silver medalist Kohei Matsumura (Team Mitsubishi HPS) took 5th in 1:04:41, with Rei Omori (Chuo Gakuin Univ.) taking top collegiate honors with a 1:05:23 for 9th.

29th Shibetsu Half Marathon
Shibetsu, Hokkaido, 7/26/15
click here for complete results

Women
1. Winfredah Kebaso (Kenya/Nitori) - 1:12:36
2. Mai Ito (Otsuka Seiyaku) - 1:14:47
3. Yui Okada (Otsuka Seiyaku) - 1:15:13
4. Ai Inoue (Noritz) - 1:15:34
5. Kikuyo Tsuzaki (Noritz) - 1:16:14
6. Mari Ozaki (Noritz) - 1:16:39
7. Remi Nakazato (Nitori) - 1:16:53
8. Yuko Mizuguchi (Denso) - 1:17:38
9. Mei Matsuyama (Meijo Univ.) - 1:18:13
10. Madoka Nakano (Noritz) - 1:18:32

Men
1. Kenta Matsumoto (Toyota) - 1:03:56
2. Tsubasa Hayakawa (Toyota) - 1:04:20
3. Masaki Ito (Konica Minolta) - 1:04:25
4. Ryo Matsumoto (Toyota) - 1:04:39
5. Kohei Matsumura (Mitsubishi HPS) - 1:04:41
6. Yoshihiro Wakamatsu (Nissin Shokuhin) - 1:05:12
7. Natsuki Terada (JR Higashi Nihon) - 1:05:12
8. Minato Oishi (Toyota) - 1:05:17
9. Rei Omori (Chuo Gakuin Univ.) - 1:05:23
10. Tomoyuki Morita (Kanebo) - 1:05:38

(c) 2015 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kawauchi Takes Six Minutes Off Kitakyushu Marathon Course Record to Lead Weekend Results

After a seven-week break from the marathon, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) scored his third-straight marathon win, second-straight course record and came just shy of a third-straight negative split as he ran a completely solo 2:11:46 to take almost six minutes off the Kitakyushu Marathon course record. Following up on negative split wins at December's Hofu Yomiuri Marathon and January's Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon, the latter a course record by half an hour, Kawauchi was on his own in the first 100 m in Kitakyushu and never looked back.

In the hilly first 10 km his pace fluctuated from high-2:12 to high-2:10, but once Kawauchi got into the flatter section of the course he settled out on track for a high-2:11 to low-2:12 time. After a 1:05:51 split at halfway he slowed slightly on the outbound trip to the turnaround near 31 km, but picking it up again after 35 km he marked a 6:34 from 40 km to the finish to stop the clock at 2:11:46,  a 1:05:55 second half …

Kipsang Talking Loud and Aga Mumbling Bold - Tokyo Marathon Preview

After stepping up to the big leagues last year with course records in the 2:03 and 2:19 range, the Tokyo Marathon hopes to go one better this year. Men's course record setter Wilson Kipsang (Kenya) is back, stepping up from a 2:03:50 prediction for Tokyo in January to a 2:02:50 world record prediction at Friday's pre-race press conference. In the unmentioned absence of women's course record breaker Sarah Chepchirchir the top-ranked woman is Ruti Aga (Ethiopia), coming in hot off a 1:06:39 win last month in Houston and turning heads at the press conference with a boldly mumbled 2:18:00 prediction.

Management for both Kipsang and Aga were skeptical to JRN of their athletes' predictions, people from each camp saying times two minutes slower would be more likely, one minute slower in a best-case scenario. But whatever the prediction, Kipsang was clear to fellow past champs Feyisa Lilesa (Ethiopia) and Dickson Chumba (Kenya) about one thing: he wants a more conservative fi…

Kenyans Kabuu, Jemeli and Cheyech Lead Nagoya Women's Marathon Field

The Nagoya Women's Marathon is the largest women-only marathon in the world, one with a long history as an elite race and adapting to the times with a mass-participation field of 20,000. The last few years it has seen a series of dynamic, high-level performances by top Japanese women, from Sairi Maeda's 2:22:48 in 2015 to the 2:23:19 to 2:23:20 sprint finish battle between Tomomi Tanaka and Rei Ohara in 2016 to Yuka Ando's stellar 2:21:36 debut and teammate Mao Kiyota's 2:23:47 breakthrough last year.

Maeda, Ohara and Kiyota all return this year to face the Kenyan trio of Lucy Kabuu, Valary Jemeli and Flomena Cheyech Daniel. Kabuu went to high school in Japan before moving on to the big leagues, but she hasn't finished a marathon since her 2:20:21 in Dubai 2015. Cheyech also used to be based in Japan as is a familiar face here, winning the last two Saitama International Marathons. Jemeli is making her Japanese debut, and with a 2:21:57 win in Prague and a 2:20:53 …