Skip to main content

Kuira and Karoki Top Road and Track Action

by Brett Larner
Karoki photo by Tsukasa Kawarai


Marathons and ekidens aside, this weekend also saw high-level half marathon and track action.  At Tokyo's Setagaya 246 Half Marathon Japan based-Kenyan Paul Kuira (Team Konica Minolta) scored the third win in four half marathons in his career to date, setting a course record 1:02:27.  Kuira and university runners Takato Suzuki (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) and Yusuke Nishiyama (Komazawa Univ.) went out fast, ahead of the pack within the first few km and staying together through 15 km before Kuira put them away.  For Kuira it was a solid tuneup for his marathon debut in three weeks at the Fukuoka International Marathon.  For Suzuki, 2nd in 1:02:55, it was his first time breaking 1:03 in the half marathon, a result sure to elevate his position on the deep roster of Hakone Ekiden favorite Aoyama Gakuin University.  Nishiyama, who ran this year's United Airlines NYC Half with support from JRN, took 3rd in 1:03:08.


Across the Tamagawa river, the Nittai University Time Trials meet saw Tokyo-based Rio Olympian and World XC and World Half Marathon silver medalist Bedan Karoki (DeNA RC) deliver a spectacular double.  Running Saturday night's 10000 m A-heat Karoki ran 27:07.30, his best since last year's Beijing World Championships, beating two-time World Junior Championships 3000 mSC gold medalist Jonathan Ndiku (Team Hitachi Butsuryu) and John Maina (Team Fujitsu), both of whom went under 27:30 for the first time.  24 hours later Karoki returned to take down Rio 1500 m runner Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) and a deep field over 5000 m, winning in 13:25.64.  The top 19 all broke 14 minutes, including Kenyan high schoolers Luka Musembi (Sendai Ikuei H.S.) and Peter Mwangi (Sendai Ikuei H.S.) and Japanese high schoolers Ryota Natori (Saku Chosei H.S.), Yuhi Nakaya (Saku Chosei H.S.) and Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.).  Of particular interest was Kenyan Nganga Waweru, 5th in 13:39.69.  Photographer Tsukasa Kawarai reports that Waweru is 15 years old and trains with support from the Young Champs program, in Japan for experience before returning to Kenya.

11th Setagaya 246 Half Marathon
Tokyo, 11/13/16

1. Paul Kuira (Kenya/Konica Minolta) - 1:02:27 - CR
2. Takato Suzuki (Aoyama Gakuin Univ) - 1:02:55
3. Yusuke Nishiyama (Komazawa Univ.) - 1:03:08
4. Ryusei Yoshinaga (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:36
5. Keisuke Hayashi (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:52
6. Kinari Ikeda (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:53
7. Yuya Yoshida (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:55
8. Fuminori Shimo (Komazawa Univ.) - 1:04:01
9. Kosuke Yamada (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:04:04
10. Takumi Hirose (Komazawa Univ.) - 1:04:47

254th Nittai University Time Trials
Yokohama, Kanagawa, 11/12-13/16
click here for complete results

Men's 10000 m Heat 6
1. Bedan Karoki (Kenya/DeNA) - 27:07.30
2. Jonathan Ndiku (Kenya/Hitachi Butsuryu) - 27:11.23
3. John Maina (Kenya/Fujitsu) - 27:21.97
4. Joseph Onsarigo (Kenya/ND Software) - 28:25.93
5. Shohei Kurata (GMO Athletes) - 28:32.91

Men's 5000 m Heat 41
1. Bedan Karoki (Kenya/DeNA) - 13:25.64
2. Ronald Kwemoi (Kenya/Komori Corp.) - 13:27.77
3. Kassa Mekashaw (Ethiopia/Yachiyo Kogyo) - 13:31.08
4. Tonosa Hiko (Ethiopia/Kurosaki Harima) - 13:31.09
5. Nganga Waweru (Kenya) - 13:39.69
6. Samuel Mwangi (Kenya/Konica Minolta) - 13:40.86
7. Ezekiel Chebotibin (Kenya/Toho Refining) - 13:43.45
8. Luka Musembi (Kenya/Sendai Ikuei H.S.) - 13:46.08
9. Peter Mwangi (Kenya/Sendai Ikuei H.S.) - 13:47.28
10. Alfred Ngeno (Kenya/Nissin Shokuhin) - 113:50.27
-----
13. Ryota Natori (Sendai Ikuei H.S.) - 13:52.61
15. Yuhi Nakaya (Sendai Ikuei H.S.) - 13:54.65
17. Hyuga Endo (Gakuho Ishikawa H.S.) - 13:57.57

text © 2016 Brett Larner, all rights reserved
Karoki photo © 2016 Tsukasa Kawarai, all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Japan's London World Championships Marathon Squad Arrives Back Home

The six members of Japan's men's and women's marathon teams at the ongoing London World Championships returned to Tokyo's Haneda Airport on Aug. 9. Decked out in the official team suit, Japanese team captain and at 9th the top-placing Japanese marathoner in London Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) spoke to the media.

Having declared pre-race his intention to withdraw from consideration for future Japanese National Team positions, post-race Kawauchi showed no change in that intent. With regard to his future plans, his motivation as a competitor likewise remaining unchanged, Kawauchi indicated that he will run Decmeber's Fukuoka International Marathon,where his 3rd-place overall finish last year earned him his place in London. "In Fukuoka I want to break my PB and run 2:07," he said. "There are things I want to accomplish besides being on the National Team."

Kawauchi revealed that his next marathon will be September's Oslo Marathon, whe…

Silver and Bronze - Summary of Japanese Performances at 2017 London World Championships

Thanks to a last-minute rush Japan walked away from the London World Championships with a passable haul. The JAAF judges performance in terms of medals and top 8 finishes. Up to Saturday, only one Japanese athlete had met either, 18-year-old sprinter Abdul Hakim Sani Brown finishing 7th in the men's 200 m final as the first Japanese man to make a 200 m final at Worlds since 2003. Three other Japanese athletes had scored top 10 placings, Yuki Kawauchi and Kentaro Nakamoto in the men's marathon and Ayuko Suzuki in the women's 10000 m, but under the JAAF's criteria these were not viewed as success.


Saturday's men's 4x100 m final brought the first Japanese medal of the Championships, with Japan following up on its Rio Olympics silver with a bronze, its first-ever Worlds medal in the discipline. Sunday morning brought Japan's best-ever showing in the men's 50 km race walk, Rio bronze medalist Hirooki Arai moving up to silver, Kai Kobayashi taking bronze wit…

London World Championships - Day Nine Japanese Results

Following up on its silver medal at the Rio Olympics, the Japanese men's 4x100 m relay squad delivered the first Japanese medal of the London World Championships as it took bronze behind hosts Great Britain and U.S.A. Swapping in alternate Kenji Fujimitsu for ailing anchor Aska Cambridge in the final, the team featured only two starting members of the Rio lineup. Lead runner Shuhei Tada, a student at Kwansei Gakuin University who burst onto the scene in May, again proved himself the best new development in Japanese men's sprinting with a fast start. Rio members Shota Iizuka and Yoshihide Kiryu did their bits on second and third to keep Japan even with Jamaica in 3rd before Fujimitsu delivered the goods.

With bronze at the Beijing Olympics and silver in Rio last year it was Japan's first-ever World Championships men's 4x100 m relay medal. At age Fujimitsu may not make it to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but with Cambridge, 200 m finalist Abdul Hakim Sani Brown and Rio team …