Skip to main content

Kumanichi 30 km Announces Elite Field

https://twitter.com/miyatoshi5/status/820025369075949568

translated and edited by Brett Larner

On Jan. 13 the organizers of the Feb. 19 Kumamoto-jo Marathon announced the 19-strong elite field for the 61st running of the Kumanichi 30 km Road Race, the world's premier 30 km held alongside the marathon.  Heading the men's field are last year's 5th-placer Shun Sakuraoka (Toyo Univ.) who finished 4th on the Hakone Ekiden's Fourth Stage on Jan. 2, and New Year Ekiden Third Stage runner-up Yuichiro Ueno (DeNA).

Representing the corporate leagues alongside Ueno are his DeNA teammate Toshio Takaki who ran the competitive Fourth Stage at the New Year Ekiden, Ryu Takaku (Yakult), Shoya Okuno (Toyota Kyushu), Shuhei Yamaguchi (Asahi Kasei) and more.  Kumamoto natives include Kyushu Gakuin H.S. and Aoyama Gakuin University graduate Shun Yamamura and Keisuke Tanaka (Fujitsu).  Along with Sakuraoka, university runners include Tomofumi Uda (Takushoku Univ.) who finished one place behind Sakuraoka at Hakone,

The women's field of 5 is led by last year's runner-up Mami Onuki (Sysmex) and 4th-placer Sakie Arai (Osaka Gakuin Univ.).  Erika Ikeda (Higo Ginko) will represent Kumamoto prefecture.  Along with 50 amateur runners, a total of 94 people are entered.

Kumanichi 30 km Road Race Elite Field
Kumamoto, 2/19/17
all times listed are best in last three years except where noted

Men
Ryu Takaku (24, Yakult) - 1:30:32 (Kumanichi 2014)
Shota Yamaguchi (31, Fujitsu) - 1:31:28 (Kumanichi 2015)
Shun Sakuraoka (22, Toyo Univ.) - 1:32:15 (Kumanichi 2016)
Tomofumi Uda (22, Takushoku Univ.) - 1:33:22 (Kumanichi 2016)
Yuji Nakamura (27, Aichi Seiko) - 1:35:10 (Kumanichi 2015)
Shoya Okuno (23, Toyota Kyushu) - 1:02:26 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2015)
Keisuke Tanaka (28, Fujitsu) - 1:02:38 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2014)
Shinji Yoshimoto (26, Kurosaki Harima) - 1:02:51 (Marugame 2016)
Toshio Takaki (23, DeNA) - 1:02:51 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2015)
Yuichiro Ueno (31, DeNA) - 1:03:21 (Sendai Int'l Half 2015)
Shuhei Yamaguchi (22, Asahi Kasei) - 1:03:37 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2014)
Shuhei Yamamoto (25, Toyota) - 1:04:58 (Shibetsu Half 2016)
Kazuya Deguchi (28, Asahi Kasei) - 1:02:59 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2013)

Women
Mami Onuki (25, Sysmex) - 1:46:37 (Kumanichi 2016)
Sakie Arai (22, Osaka Gakuin Univ.) - 1:47:53 (Kumanichi 2016)
Ayumi Kubo (21, Kagoshima Ginko) - 1:11:29 (Sanyo Ladies Half 2015)
Erika Ikeda (25, Higo Ginko) - 1:12:38 (Sanyo Ladies Half 2015)
Rie Uchida (21, Otsuka Seiyaku) - 1:16:57 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2016)

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Weekend Overseas Japanese Results

Lost in the luminosity of Eliud Kipchoge's world record and Gladys Cherono's women's course record at the Berlin Marathon were a score of Japanese results there and elsewhere overseas, ranging from the sparkling to the dull. Cherono and 2nd and 3rd placers Ruti Aga and Tirunesh Dibaba all broke Mizuki Noguchi's Berlin Marathon course record of 2:19:12 which has stood since she set that national record mark in 2005.

A kilometer behind Dibaba, Mizuki Matsuda (Daihatsu) followed up her 2:22:44 debut in Osaka in January with a 2:22:23 PB for 5th, making her just the fourth Japanese woman ever to break 2:23 twice in her career. 2:23:46 woman Honami Maeda (Tenmaya) ran 2:25:23 for 7th, beating Tenmaya teammate Rei Ohara whose 2:27:28 put her only 10th but qualified her for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics marathon trials, only the second athlete after 2018 Boston Marathon winner Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) to qualify for the trials under the two-race average wildcard opt…

Nittai University Head Coach Masaaki Watanabe Fired Over Abuse Scandal

On Sept. 12 Nittai University announced that it will fire ekiden team head coach Masaaki Watanabe, 55, over the current power harassment scandal surrounding him. According to the university's public relations office, interviews by the alumni association with five current and one former team member reported multiple acts of violence by Watanabe including kicking athletes' legs and grabbing them by the chest.

The interviews also reported that Watanabe verbally abused and threatened student athletes and attacked their character. When runners fell off pace during workouts he was reported to have shouted, "Get the hell out of this university!" and, following the runners in a car, "I am going to f*cking run you over and kill you." Injured team members were also reported to have been subject to verbal humiliation by Watanabe, including, "Look at this f*cking cripple," and "You f*cking deserve it." Watanabe admitted the accusations but said tha…

Kazami Breaks 100 km World Record at Lake Saroma

Running on the same course where Japan's Takahiro Sunada set the road 100 km world record of 6:13:33 twenty years ago, 2:17:23 marathoner Nao Kazamibested a deep and competitive field to win the Lake Saroma 100 km Ultramarathon in a world record 6:09:14.

Part of a front group of at least five that went through the marathon split in 2:33:36, on pace for 6:04:01, Kazami lost touch with the lead as rivals Koji Hayasaka and Takehiko Gyoba surged just before halfway to open a roughly 30 second lead that lasted until nearly 75 km. But in the last quarter of the race Kazami, a graduate of Hakone Ekiden powerhouse Komazawa University, was the only one who could sustain anything close to the early pace, overtaking Hayasaka and Gyoba before pulling away to open a lead of over 11 minutes. Kazami's mark took more than 4 minutes off the world record, and he also bettered the 100 km track world record of 6:10:20 set in 1978 well before he was born by the late Don Ritchie.
Trying to stay wi…