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13 New Records and Other Highlights From the 2015 National High School Track and Field Championships

by Brett Larner
videos by naoki620

detailed day-by-day National High School Championships coverage:
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Despite sometimes extreme conditions with temperatures in the mid-30s throughout the five days of the 2015 Japanese National High School Track and Field Championships at Wakayama's Kimiidera Field performances were at a high level in most events, with thirteen new records set including two junior national records and two high school national records.



By far the star of the show was Haruko Ishizuka (Higashi Osaka Prep Keiai H.S.), who showed outstanding range in everything from 100 m to 800 m.  Including heats and semifinals she ran a total of fourteen races in five different events in five days, sometimes with less than an hour between them, but still produced a 57.06 400 mH junior national record and high school national record, #4 among juniors in the world this year, a 53.30 National High School Championships record in the 400 m, a spectacular anchor leg to win the 4x400 m, and a 2:07.20 PB for 2nd in what may have been the best girls' race of the meet, an 800 m duel against 1500 m champion Chika Mukai (Shigakukan H.S.).  It's no surprise that Keiai took the overall girls' champion title on the strength of Ishizuka's wins, or that she earned a place on the Japanese women's 4x400 m team for the Beijing World Championships later this month.

Haruko Ishizuka (Higashi Osaka Prep Keiai H.S.)

Less noticeably, Shinichi Yukinaga (Seiko Gakuen H.S.) also turned in multiple records in the throws, opening with an 18.21 m boys' shot put junior national record and high school national record and following up with a 55.59 m National High School Championships meet record.

Shinichi Yukinaga (Seiko Gakuen H.S.)

Five other athletes set new National High School Championships records in just about everything except for sprints and long distance, indicating general improvement in many of Japan's traditionally weaker events.

13.85 +1.4 m/s - Nao Kanai (Kawasaki Tachibana H.S.) - Boys' 110 m Hurdles National High School Championships meet record

50.27 - Kazunari Takada (Hosei Prep Daini H.S.) - Boys' 400 m Hurdles National High School Championships meet record

15.80 m -0.2 m/s - Chihiro Nozaki (Rakunan H.S.) - Boys' Triple Jump National High School Championships meet record

49.15 - Nanaka Kori (Higashi Osaka Prep Keiai H.S.) - Girls' Discus Throw National High School Championships meet record

6002 - Hayao Tagami (Rakunan H.S.) - Boys' Octathlon National High School Championships meet record




Of JRN's picks for the top five competitions of this year's Championships, three came in middle distances where despite no new records up there were great races and depth that again suggested that things are moving in the right direction among the people who may make up a good part of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics team.  Defending 100 m champion Kenta Oshima's win over World Youth Olympics double gold medalist Abdul Hakim Sani Brown was the boys' highlight of the meet.

Boys' 100 m Final: Kenta Oshima (Tokyo H.S.) 10.29 -0.8 m/s PB to win over Abdul Hakin Sani Brown (Josai Prep H.S.), 10.30

Girls' 800 m Final: Chika Mukai (Shigakukan H.S.) - 2:06.29 PB to win over Haruko Ishizuka (Higashi Osaka Prep Keiai H.S.), 2:07.20 PB

Girls' 1500 m Final: Chika Mukai (Shigakukan H.S.) - 4:16.76 PB to win, leading 9 girls under 4:25

Boys' 1500 m Final: Kazuyoshi Tamogami (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) - 3:48.48 to win, leading 9 boys under 3:50

Boys' Javelin Throw Final: Gen Naganuma (Takada H.S.) - 66.75 m to win, top 3 all within 29 cm

(c) 2015 Brett Larner
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