Skip to main content

Igarashi and Sakamoto Face Koech and Rumokol at 15th Volksbank Muenster Marathon

by Brett Larner


Germany's Volksbank Muenster Marathon celebrates its 15th running this Sunday.  Appearing with support from JRN, Japan's Shingo Igarashi (Josai Univ. Coaching Staff) and Yoshiko Sakamoto (Y.W.C.) face competitive fields from Kenya and Ethiopia.  The course record setter at January's Katsuta Marathon, Igarashi scored some attention at April's Boston Marathon when he frontran the first 10 km before suffering a minor stress fracture.  Muenster will be his first marathon since then, and he is optimistic of bettering his 2:13:15 best from his Katsuta win.  That PB ranks him 3rd in the field, not far behind 2:12:08 man Joel Kositany (Kenya).  In another class is the heavy favorite, Kenya's Duncan Koech with a 2:09:17 at the 2014 Vienna Marathon.  At the pre-race press conference race director Michael Brinkmann said that he hopes to see a 2:07 winning time, a major improvement on the current 2:10:25 course record and something that only Koech could conceivably deliver.

The 2015 Zurich Marathon winner, Sakamoto's 2:36:29 best from the 2015 Osaka International Women's Marathon puts her at 5th in the field.  With the scratch of last year's winner Nancy Koech (Kenya) the probable favorite is Elizabeth Rumokol (Kenya) with a solid 2:29:32 best at altitude at the 2015 Nairobi Marathon.  Ethiopians Belaynesh Yigezu and Alemtsehay Demse fill in the low-mid 2:30's gap between the front pair and Sakamoto.  JRN will be on-site at the Muenster Marathon to cover the race and support Igarashi and Sakamoto.

15th Volksbank Muenster Marathon Entry Lists
Muenster, Germany, 9/11/16
times listed are best in last three years except where noted

Men
Duncan Koech (Kenya) - 2:09:17 (Vienna 2014)
Joel Kositany (Kenya) - 2:12:08 (Tiberias 2014)
Shingo Igarashi (Japan/Josai Univ.) - 2:13:15 (Katsuta 2016)
Rogers Kipchirchir (Kenya) - 2:13:45 (Lodz 2016)
Benard Rotich (Kenya) - 2:14:17 (La Rochelle 2013)
Henry Kibet (Kenya) - 2:15:13 (Cividale 2015)
Arnold Kibet (Kenya) - 2:17:34 (Nairobi 2013)
Matthew Sang (Kenya) - 2:18:33 (Lens 2015)
M
Women
Elizabeth Rumokol (Kenya) - 2:29:32 (Nairobi 2015)
Belaynesh Yigezu (Ethiopia) - 2:31:08 (Barcelona 2015)
Alemtsehay Demse (Ethiopia) - 2:35:18 (Karlsruhe 2013)
Yoshiko Sakamoto (Japan/Y.W.C.) - 2:36:29 (Osaka Int'l 2015)
Salina Jebet (Kenya) - 2:39:39 (Mainz 2014)
Janet Cheruiyot (Kenya) - 2:44:33 (Nairobi 2014)

text and photo © 2016 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Chebii Returns - Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon Elite Field

Defending champ Ezekiel Chebii (Kenya) returns to lead the field for the Mar. 4 Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon. Chebii is one of three men in the field with recent 2:06 times, his 2:06:07 in Amsterdam two years ago leading Tadesse Abraham (Switzerland) and Abera Kuma (Ethiopia) to form a clear trio of favorites.

Making up the second pack are four current sub-2:10 Japanese men, 2017 Gold Coast winner Takuya Noguchi (Konica Minolta), Rio Olympian Satoru Sasaki (Asahi Kasei), and Sasaki's teammates Takuya Fukatsu and Fumihiro Maruyama. The addition of sub-61 half marathoner Kenta Murayama in his second shot at the marathon after a failed debut in Tokyo two years ago makes for a formidable quartet of men from 2017 and 2018 New Year Ekiden national champion Asahi Kasei all aligned in training and talent.

With Japan's depth it's never surprising to see a relatively anonymous runner make a breakthrough and factor into the action. Yoshiki Takenouchi (NTT Nishi Nihon) was one of the …

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 …

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
Upcoming race schedule: Feb. 25: Fukaya City Half Marathon, Saitama
Mar. 4: Kanaguri Hai Tamana Half Marathon, Kumamoto
Mar. 18: Wan Jin Shi Marathon, Taiwan
Mar. 25: Kuki Half Marathon, Saitama
Apr. 16: Boston Marathon, U.S.A.
May 5: Toyohirakawa Half Marathon, Hokkaido
June 2: ASICS Stockholm Marathon, Sweden
June 17: Okinoshima 50 km Ultramarathon, Shimane
July 1: Gold Coast Airport Marathon, Australia
Aug. 2…