Skip to main content

Nagano Marathon Proudly Welcomes Tejeda and Yoshida

by Brett Larner

With its long history of hosting Russians now interrupted by the IAAF's doping scandal suspension of all Russian athletes, Japan's Nagano Marathon proudly welcomes two other athletes with recent drug suspensions to lead the women's field at next weekend's 18th edition.  Gladys Tejeda (Peru) tops the list with the loss of her gold medal in last summer's Pan-Am Games marathon after testing positive for the masking agent furosemide.  Close behind is Kaori Yoshida (Runners Pulse), who holds the honor of being the only Japanese athlete to have been publicly suspended for EPO after testing positive at the 2012 Honolulu Marathon.

With both having run 2:28 bests last year they are almost 4 minutes ahead of the fastest athlete in the field never to have served a drug suspension, Kenya's Hellen Mugo.  Neither is currently under suspension, an indication that Nagano and its elite coordinator share the familiar focus here on details at the expense of the big picture or moral considerations.  A growing number of other races might not touch people like Tejeda and Yoshida, but with a win by one of them likely there's not much doubt that the Nagano Marathon will get what it's asking for.  Together with other events Nagano sends the clear message: remember, if you're serving a drug suspension don't lose heart.  You can always find Japanese races and elite coordinators ready to take you back.

The men's field looks drug suspension-free, Laban Mutai (Kenya) the favorite with a 2:08:03 at the 2014 Linz Marathon.  On paper Japan-based Mongolian national record holder Ser-Od Bat-Ochir (Team NTN) is his toughest competition, but with wild swings in performance ranging from a 1:02:10 national record at February's Marugame Half to a blistering 2:27:30 at March's Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon he's hard to read.  Other internationals include Jairus Chanchima (Kenya), 2005 World Half Marathon gold medalist Fabiano Joseph (Tanzania) and Harry Summers (Australia).

Last year's Nagano ran hot for the home crowd with three Japanese men breaking 2:12.  The fastest one not to do it, Taiga Ito (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC), 5th in 2:12:04, is back, along with the Japanese stars of the last two years' Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathons, Hiroki Kadota (Team Kanebo) and Kazuya Ishida (Team Nishitetsu).  Look also for surprise additions from the depths of the general division.

18th Nagano Marathon
Nagano, 4/16/16
click here for detailed elite field listing
times listed are 2013-2016 bests except where noted

Women
Gladys Tejeda (Peru) - 2:28:12 (Rotterdam 2015)
Kaori Yoshida (Japan/Runners Pulse) - 2:28:43 (Saitama Int'l 2015)
Hellen Mugo (Kenya) - 2:32:00 (Kosice 2013)
Winfridah Kebaso (Kenya/Nittori) - 2:32:08 (Saitama Int'l 2015)
Shasho Insermu (Ethiopia) - 2:32:42 (Marrakesh 2016)
Yumiko Kinoshita (Japan/Second Wind AC) - 2:35:49 (Tokyo 2015)

Men
Laban Mutai (Kenya) - 2:08:03 (Linz 2014)
Ser-Od Bat-Ochir (Mongolia/NTN) - 2:08:50 (Fukuoka Int'l 2014)
Jairus Chanchima (Kenya) - 2:10:37 (Xiamen Int'l 2013)
Hiroki Kadota (Japan/Kanebo) - 2:10:46 (Beppu-Oita 2015)
Taiga Ito (Japan/Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 2:11:15 (Tokyo 2013)
Kazuya Ishida (Japan/Nishitetsu) - 2:12:25 (Beppu-Oita 2016)
Fabiano Joseph (Tanzania) - 2:13:57 (Hofu 2015)
Hiro Tonegawa (Japan/Alps Tool) - 2:18:55 (Tokyo 2014)
Yuta Koyama (Japan/Kotohira Kogyo) - 2:20:43 (Nagano 2013)
Harry Summers (Australia) - 2:21:23 (Lake Biwa 2014)

© 2016 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Tokyo Experiments With Spraying Water Along 2020 Marathon Course to Combat Heat

As part of its measures to deal with the hot conditions expected at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, on Aug. 13 the Tokyo Metropolitan Government conducted an experiment to measure the effects on pavement surface temperature of spraying the road surface with water. Data from the experiments were released to the media.

The experiment was conducted from 4:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. along a 120 m section of sidewalk along Uchibori Street in the Imperial Palace's outer gardens in Chiyoda Ward.  In the experiment, open-ended tubes used in agricultural work eres placed at the edge of the sidewalk  to supply water. Surface temperature readings were taken every 30 minutes for three different experimental scenarios:
spraying water beginning at 4:00 a.m.spraying water beginning at 7:00 a.m.not spraying any water The experiment found that where water had been sprayed, the road surface temperature remained in the 27 to 29˚C range even when the air temperature exceeded 30˚C. Where no wa…

On Broadcast Commentary

It's been 122 days since the 122nd Boston Marathon. Of what the two exceptional people who won that day accomplished, WilliamShakespeare summed it up better than any other commentator in his Sonnet 122:

Beyond all date, even to eternity;
     Or at the least, so long as brain and heart
     Have faculty by nature to subsist;
     Till each to razed oblivion yield his part
     Of thee, thy record never can be miss'd.

What else needs to be said? But the other thing that remains from that day is, of course, this:

Worst punditry ever? #Yukipic.twitter.com/AwjeuZDtOt — Xempo Running (@xempouk) April 16, 2018
In the 122 days since Boston this clip has been on my mind a lot. The commentary here by Larry Rawson and Al Trautwig was exceptionally bad, but it wasn't unique to them and highlighted many of the problems with marathon TV broadcasts and especially their hosts and commentators. I'm fortunate to live in Japan where the announcers for the countless marathon live TV broadcas…

The Asian Games Marathon Course: An Early Morning Start for Loops of the City's Main Roads

Its skyline punctuated by skyscrapers demonstrating Indonesia's economic ascension. A lush plaza holding a famed tower, the symbol of the metropolis. When Jakarta hosts the Asian Games next week its marathon course will loop around the city's main streets, starting and finishing from the Games' main venue, Gelola Bungarno Stadium. In light of the heat and humidity of the races' summertime dates, Aug. 25 for men and 26 for women, the marathons will get off to early starts at 6:00 a.m. local time, 8:00 a.m. Japan time.

Leaving the stadium for the main streets, the Jakarta course turns to the north before turning back. Each of the two loops is about 20 km, both mostly flat and straight with the only hills coming in the gentle climbs onto and off the waterway bridges that dot the route. At a rotary about 5 km from the start, runners are greeted by a statue of a man and woman built in 1962 the last time Jakarta hosted the Asian Games. Running on amid the highrises, around …