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Hayashi Wins National University Half Marathon Title - Weekend Road Review

by Brett Larner


Lake Biwa was the weekend's biggest race, but there was no shortage of other high-level action across the country.  Last year the National University Men's Half Marathon in Tokyo's Show Kinen Park was the deepest half marathon in history, with 265 breaking 1:06:00 and the top 12 all under 1:02:30.  This year with no World University Games and the World University Cross-Country Championships, NYC Half Marathon, World Half Marathon Championships and Rio Olympics all coming up most of Japan's top university men gave it a miss, resulting in a relatively low-key race by recent standards.  The entire field went out just under 3:00/km pace and stayed there, the numbers whittling down to a final seven.  Ryunosuke Hayashi (Tokai Univ.) broke away in the last km for the win in 1:03:07, his teammate Yuki Hirota just outkicking Kengo Suzuki (Kanazawa Univ.) for 2nd with both clocking 1:03:08.  The absence of top-level names meant runners from outside the Kanto Region had a fighting chance, and they took it.  Kazuki Muramoto (Hyogo Kenritsu Univ.) and Masatoshi Teranishi (Kyoto Sangyo Univ.) worked side-by-side to stay in the top five, taking 4th and 5th in 1:03:13.

To the south in Kanagawa the Miura Kokusai Half Marathon saw new course records in both the men's and women's races.  Koki Tanaka (Juntendo Univ.) ran 1:05:35 to win the men's race, with Rui Aoyama (Team Univ. Ent.) setting a new women's record of 1:13:31.  Even further south, the Koichi Morishita-coached Taishi Sakamoto (Team Toyota Kyushu) scored the win at the 67th Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon in Kumamoto, outrunning Kenyan teammate Jeremiah Karemi and other Kyushu-based corporate runners in 1:03:21.  Sae Hanada (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S.) won the women's 10 km in 33:07 with Sota Ito (Oita Tomei H.S.) winning the high school boys' race in 30:14.

A new course record also came at the 10000-runner Shizuoka Marathon where 21-year-old Kenyan Michael Githae (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC), 2nd at the Ome 30 km two weeks ago, broke away from training partner Junji Katakawa (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) after 30 km to set a new record of 2:14:29 in his marathon debut.  Katakawa ran a PB 2:15:19 for 2nd, with Tomoya Shirayanagi (Team Toyota Boshoku) 3rd in 2:15:56.  Amateur Hisayo Matsumoto won the women's race in 2:50:44.  The new Kagoshima Marathon, also with a field of 10000 and featuring one of the best-looking rest websites out there, saw similar results as local corporate runner Taiki Yoshimura (Team Asahi Kasei) ran 2:17:16 to lead four under 2:20 and amateur Kazumi Sakaguchi took the women's race in 2:55:19.

19th National University Men's Half Marathon
Tachikawa, Tokyo, 3/6/16
complete results coming shortly

1. Ryunosuke Hayashi (Tokai Univ.) - 1:03:07
2. Yuki Hirota (Tokai Univ.) - 1:03:08
3. Kengo Suzuki (Kanagawa Univ.) - 1:03:08
4. Kazuki Muramoto (Hyogo Kenritsu Univ.) - 1:03:13
5. Masatoshi Teranishi (Kyoto Sangyo Univ.) - 1:03:13
6. Tomofumi Uda (Takushoku Univ.) - 1:03:14
7. Homare Morita (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:14
8. Yuki Nakamura (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:22
9. Tatsuya Maruyama (Senshu Univ.) - 1:03:26
10. Daisuke Hosomori (Koku Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:32


67th Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon
Tamana, Kumamoto, 3/6/16
click here for complete results

Men's Half Marathon
1. Taishi Sakamoto (Toyota Kyushu) - 1:03:21
2. Hayato Mera (Mitsubishi HPS Nagasaki) - 1:03:39
3. Kyohei Nishi (Kyudenko) - 1:03:59
4. Jeremiah Thuku Karemi (Kenya/Toyota Kyushu) - 1:04:08
5. Kiyoshi Koga (Yasukawa Denki) - 1:04:20

Women's 10 km
1. Sae Hanada (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S) - 33:07
2. Satomi Ueta (Kyocera) - 33:24
3. Ai Utsunomiya (Miyazaki Ginko) - 33:30
4. Wakana Itsuki (Fukuoka Univ.) - 33:36
5. Rina Yamashita (Oita Tomei H.S.) - 33:41

H.S Boys' 10 km
1. Sota Ito (Oita Tomei H.S.) - 30:14
2. Ken Tanoue (Kyushu Gakuin H.S.) - 30:26
3. Daiki Ando (Kagoshima Jitsugyo H.S.) - 30:26


34th Miura Kokusai Half Marathon
Kanagawa, 3/6/16

Men
1. Koki Tanaka (Juntendo Univ.) - 1:05:35 - CR

Women
1. Rui Aoyama (Universal Entertainment) - 1:13:31 - CR


Shizuoka Marathon
Shizuoka, 3/6/16

Men
1. Michael Githae (Kenya/Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:14:29 - CR, debut
2. Junji Katakawa (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:15:19 - PB
3. Tomoya Shirayanagi (Toyota Boshoku) - 2:15:56
4. Yasushi Yamamoto (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:19:23

Women
1. Hisayo Matsumoto (unattached) - 2:50:44


1st Kagoshima Marathon
Kagoshima, 3/6/16

Men
1. Taiki Yoshimura (Asahi Kasei) - 2:17:16
2. Sho Matsueda (Mitsubishi HPS Nagasaki) - 2:18:52
3. Junichi Tsubouchi (Kurosaki Harima) - 2:19:15
4. Shinji Yoshimoto (Kurosaki Harima) - 2:19:38
5. Yusuke Tobimatsu (Soo T&F Assoc.) - 2:20:38

Women
1. Kazumi Sakaguchi (unattached) - 2:55:19

© 2016 Brett Larner
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