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Olympic Year Track Season Kicks Off at Setagaya and Kanaguri

by Brett Larner
video by toyosina2008



Outdoor track season got moving early with two big meets on April 2nd. At the Setagaya Time Trials meet in Tokyo's Kinuta Park, 17-year-old Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) kicked hard over the last lap to outrun three members of 2016 Hakone Ekiden champion Aoyama Gakuin University, all of whom ran PBs, and all other competition and go under 13:50 for 5000 m for the first time.  A day after the start of his senior year of high school Endo won the fastest 5000 m heat in 13:48.13, moving up from #9 to #7 on the all-time Japanese high school lists.  AGU's Kazuki Tamura and Yuki Nakamura took 2nd and 3rd in PBs of 13:50.43 and 13:52.29, with Hakone Sixth Stage winner Yuji Onoda joining them under 14 for the first time in 13:56.87.  One other high schooler, Ryunosuke Omori (Sano Nittai Prep H.S.) scored his first sub-14, running 13:54.25 for 5th just behind Kenyan Silas Kingori (Team SGH Group).  Kenyan Rosemary Monica Wanjiru (Team Starts) won Heat 2 of the women's 3000 m in 9:04.24, the fastest outdoor time in the world so far this year.


The Kanaguri Memorial Meet in Kumamoto was the bigger of the two.  Kenyan James Mwangi (Team NTN) won the fastest men's 5000 m heat in a world-leading 13:13.93, with former Toyo University Sixth Stage man Takanori Ichikawa (Team Toyota Boshoku) coming up just short of the Olympic standard in 13:28.91 for 7th.  Further down the same heat in 11th, Toyo's Hazuma Hattori ran just off his best in 13:40.62 two hours after having run 3:46.89 in the 1500 m fast heat.  Kenyan Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) won there in a meet record 3:35.77, also an early season world-leading time.  Masaki Toda (Nissin Shokuhin) made a strong corporate debut in 3:40.82 for 2nd behind Kwemoi, the fastest time at the Kanaguri Memorial by a Japanese man in the meet's 25-year history.  Marathoner Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) was 6th in the slow heat, 4 seconds off his best in 3:54.60.


The meet record also fell in the high school girls' 3000 m, where Sae Hanada (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S.) outran Mikuni Yada (Luther Gakuin H.S.) for the win in 9:08.51, a world junior lead.  Kenyan Ann Karindi (Team Toyota Jidoshokki) easily won the women's 5000 m A-heat in 15:32.80, over 15 seconds ahead of top Japanese woman Hanae Tanaka (Team Daiichi Seimei).

Setagaya Time Trials
Kinuta Park Field, Setagaya, Tokyo, 4/2/16
click here for complete results

Men's 5000 m Heat 15
1. Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) - 13:48.13 - PB
2. Kazuki Tamura (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 13:50.43 - PB
3. Yuki Nakamura (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 13:52.29 - PB
4. Silas Kingori (Kenya/SGH Group) - 13:52.88
5. Ryunosuke Omori (Sano Nittai Prep H.S.) - 13:54.25 - PB
6. Naoki Koyama (Tokyo Nogyo Univ.) - 13:55.07 - PB
7. Kenta Matsubara (Toyota) - 13:56.21
8. Ryutaro Ichitani (Yamanashi Gakuin Univ.) - 13:56.54
9. Yuji Onoda (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 13:56.87 - PB
10. Ryo Matsumoto (Toyota) - 13:57.30

Men's 5000 m Heat 14
1. Kosei Yamaguchi (Aisan Kogyo) - 13:53.37
2. Hiroyuki Ishikawa (Aisan Kogyo) - 13:55.64
3. Ryo Kuchimachi (Toyo Univ.) - 13:58.67

Women's 3000 m Heat 2
1. Rosemary Monica Wanjiru (Kenya/Starts) - 9:04.24 - WL
2. Grace Mbutiye Kimanzi (Kenya/Starts) - 9:07.43
3. Nana Sato (Starts) - 9:29.71

Men's 3000 m Heat 6
1. Daniel Muiva Kitonyi (Kenya/Kanebo) - 8:04.45
2. Shuho Dairokuno (Asahi Kasei) - 8:06.90
3. Tsubasa Hayakawa (Toyota) - 8:07.76


Kanaguri Memorial Meet
Kumamoto Civic Sports Park Field, Kumamoto, 4/2/16
click here for complete results

Men's 5000 m Heat 4
1. James Mwangi (Kenya/NTN) - 13:13.93 - WL
2. Rodgers Chumo Kwemoi (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 13:18.98
3. William Malel (Kenya/Honda) - 13:19.89
4. Paul Tanui (Kenya/Kyudenko) - 13:20.77
5. Alexander Mutiso (Kenya/ND Software) - 13:21.90
6. Mamiyo Nuguse (Ethiopia/Yasukawa Denki) - 13:24.93
7. Takanori Ichikawa (Hitachi Butsuryu) - 13:28.91
8. Daniel Maemba (Kenya/Toyota Boshoku) - 13:30.37
9. Hiram Ngatia (Kenya/Toyota) - 13:33.16
10. Samuel Mwangi (Kenya/Konica Minolta) - 13:34.52
11. Hazuma Hattori (Toyo Univ.) - 13:40.62

Men's 5000 m Heat 3
1. Charles Ngundu (Kenya/Komori Corp.) - 13:25.32
2. Teresa Nyakola (Ethiopia/Mazda) - 13:25.72
3. Amos Kirui (Kenya/Toyota Boshoku) - 13:25.91
4. Macharia Ndirangu (Kenya/Aichi Seiko) - 13:40.49
5. Charles Ndirangu (Kenya/JFE Steel) - 13:42.52

Women's 5000 m Heat 2
1. Ann Karindi (Kenya/Toyota Jidoshokki) - 15:32.80
2. Hanae Tanaka (Daiichi Seimei) - 15:48.74
3. Misaki Hayashida (Toyota Jidoshokki) - 15:49.42
4. Saori Noda (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) - 15:53.04
5. Naoko Koizumi (Denso) - 15:53.98

Women's 5000 m Heat 1
1. Yuma Adachi (Kyocera) - 15:55.95
2. Yuri Nozoe (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) - 15:57.41
3. Risa Taguchi (Route Inn Hotels) - 15:58.42
4. Nao Taguchi (Route Inn Hotels) - 16:04.13
5. Chitose Shibata (Japan Post Group) - 16:05.73

High School Girls' 3000 m Heat 4
1. Sae Hanada (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S.) - 9:08.51 - MR, WJL
2. Mikuni Yada (Luther Gakuin H.S.) - 9:09.93 (MR)
3. Eijia Miyagi (Oita Tomei H.S.) - 9:22.24
4. Mai Misaki (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S.) - 9:23.73
5. Mashiro Mori (Ariake H.S.) - 9:26.66

Men's 1500 m Heat 2
1. Ronald Kwemoi (Kenya/Komori Corp.) - 3:35.77 - MR, WL
2. Masaki Toda (Nissin Shokuhin) - 3:40.82
3. Yasunari Kusu (Komori Corp.) - 3:43.73
4. Hazuma Hattori (Toyo Univ.) - 3:46.89
5. Tatsuro Okazaki (Osaka Gas) - 3:47.65

Men's 1500 m Heat 1
1. Naoki Nakamura (Kansai Gakuin Univ.) - 3:49.51
2. Taisuke Hamada (Kansai Gakuin Univ.) - 3:49.61
3. Taro Hatamoto (Kansai Gakuin Univ.) - 3:49.87
-----
6. Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) - 3:54.60

Women's 1500 m
1. Mei Okada (Hokuren) - 4:25.38
2. Nozomi Tanaka (Nishiwaki Kogyo H.S.) - 4:26.69
3. Yume Goto (Nishiwaki Kogyo H.S.) - 4:26.95

© 2016 Brett Larner
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The Kawauchi Counter

Yuki Kawauchi's 2018 race results: Jan. 1: Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon, U.S.A.: 2:18:59 - 1st - CR
Jan. 14: Okukuma Road Race Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:03:28 - 7th
Jan. 21: Yashio Isshu Ekiden, Saitama: 1:01:03 - 1st - ran entire 20.0 km ekiden solo and beat all 103 teams of 6 runners each
Jan. 28: Okumusashi Ekiden First Stage (9.9 km), Saitama - 29:41 - 6th
Feb. 4: Saitama Ekiden Third Stage (12.1 km), Saitama - 36:54 - 4th
Feb. 11: Izumo Kunibiki Half Marathon, Shimane - cancelled due to heavy snow
Feb. 18: Kitakyushu Marathon, Fukuoka - 2:11:46 - 1st - CR
Feb. 25: Fukaya City Half Marathon, Saitama - 1:04:26 - 1st
Mar. 4: Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon, Kumamoto - 1:04:49 - 12th
Mar. 11: Yoshinogawa Riverside Half Marathon, Tokushima - 1:05:50 - 1st - CR
Mar. 18: Wan Jin Shi Marathon, Taiwan - 2:14:12 - 1st
Mar. 24: Heisei Kokusai University Time Trials, Saitama
              5000 m Heat 4: 14:53.95 - 1st
              5000 m Heat 6: 14:36.58 - 2nd
           …

Guinness Certifies Kawauchi's World Record 78 Career Sub-2:20 Marathons After Half Marathon in Panda Costume

Known as the Civil Servant Runner, Saitama Prefectural Government employee Yuki Kawauchi's career record of 78 sub-2:20 marathons was officially recognized as the Guinness World Record at a ceremony in his hometown of Kuki, Saitama on Mar. 25.  Raised in Kuki, Kawauchi began working for the Saitama Prefectural Government after graduating from university. Running while working full-time as a civil servant, he has qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic trial race.

Earlier this month on the 18th Kawauchi ran Taiwan's Wan Jin Shi Marathon, winning in 2:14:12. His 78th time running faster than 2 hours and 20 minutes, his achievement was certified as the official Guinness World Record. He actually broke the previous record on Jan. 1 at the Marshfield New Year's Day Marathon in the U.S.A. with his 76th sub-2:20 but followed up with two performances, one in February and the other last week, before Guinness could ratify the record.

The official recognition ceremony took place Mar. 2…

“The Miracle in Fukuoka” - Real Talk From Yuki Kawauchi on “Taking on the World” (part 1)

http://sports.yahoo.co.jp/column/detail/201701120002-spnavi

translated by Brett Larner

Ahead of his nomination to the London World Championships Marathon team, Sportsnavi published a three-part series of writings by Yuki Kawauchi on what it took for him to make the team, his hopes for London, and his views on the future of Japanese marathoning.  With his place on the London team announced on Mar. 17, JRN will publish an English translation of the complete series over the next three days. See Sportsnavi's original version linked above for more photos. Click here for part two, "Bringing All My Experience Into Play in London," or here for part three, "The Lessons of the Past Are Not 'Outdated.'"


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