Skip to main content

Yachiyo Kogyo Leads Start to Finish to Win 70th Towada Hachimantai Ekiden

25 teams from 11 prefectures took part in the 70th anniversary running of the 5-stage, 73.7 km Towada Hachimantai Ekiden on Aug. 7. Saitama's Yachiyo Kogyo corporate team scored its first-ever victory in 3:50:00. ND Software took 2nd and Subaru 3rd, with two-time defending champion Yakult falling to 4th. Kazuno T&F Assoc. was the top local team at 10th overall.

The race began at 8:00 a.m. on the shores of Lake Towada in Aomori. Mid-race temperatures around 30 degrees were recorded in Kazuno, but despite the heat and strong sunlight the athletes on each team gave it their best to ensure their tasuki would make it to the next runner.

On the tough and hilly 13.6 km First Stage Yachiyo Kogyo's Abiyot Abinet took an early lead. Yakult rookie Yuji Asaishi was only 7th. On the downhill 13.4 km Second Stage Yakult's Bernard Kimani ran the fastest time on the stage to move into 3rd, but Yachiyo Kogyo's Takahiro Yagihara ran a strong stage 3rd-best time to maintain the lead.

On the 16.2 km Third Stage through central Kazuno, Yakult's Yusuke Ogura, a two-time stage winner at the Hakone Ekiden, ran the stage's second-best time to close to within 51 seconds of Yachiyo Kogyo. The race's longest stage, the 16.4 km Fourth Stage, saw ND Software move into 2nd thanks to a stage best by Akito Terui. Yakult rookie Rintaro Takeda struggled, losing ground as he finished only 10th on the stage on time.

Subaru anchor Tsukasa Koyama ran the second-fastest time on the 14.1 km, 575 m climb Fifth Stage to go from 6th to 3rd overall, but Yachiyo Kogyo's Kazuyoshi Chiba was out of range. Yachiyo Kogyo led the entire race from start to finish. Head coach Yoshiki Koichi commented, "Every one of our athletes had the will to win. We were able to take our first title thanks to the growth produced through serious training, and I am very happy."

Of the five local teams to take part, the Kazuno T&F Assoc. team had the best placing at 10th. Akita T&F Assoc. was 13th, Daisen-Senboku T&F Assoc. 22nd, Akita University 23rd and Odate Hokushu  T&F Assoc. 25th. Kazuno Fourth Stage runner Takaaki Abe, a graduate of Hanawa H.S., commented, "Everyone on our team ran their best. Personally speaking, I had lost some time in training due to injury so my result wasn't what I was hoping for, but it was a lot of fun to be able to run on home ground being cheered on by local friends."

70th Towada Hachimantai Ekiden

Aomori, Akita, 8/7/17
25 teams, 5 stages, 73.7 km
click here for complete results

Top Team Results
1. Yachiyo Kogyo - 3:50:00
2. ND Software - 3:52:13
3. Subaru - 3:53:16
4. Yakult - 3:53:35
5. Komori Corp. - 3:54:03

Stage Best Performances
First Stage (13.6 km) - Abiyot Abinet (Yachiyo Kogyo) - 39:06
Second Stage (13.4 km) - Bernard Kimani (Yakult) - 36:14
Third Stage (16.2 km) - Alexander Mutiso (ND Software) - 46:23
Fourth Stage (16.4 km) - Akito Terui (ND Software) - 51:20
Fifth Stage (14.1 km, 575 m climb) - Yuya Yamashita (Sunbelx A) - 51:18

source article:
http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/local/akita/news/20170808-OYTNT50195.html
translated by Brett Larner

Comments

Most-Read This Week

National Corporate Women's Ekiden Champion Team to be Stripped of Title After Member Tests Positive

On July 18 it was learned from several sources connected with the situation that a member of the 2017 National Corporate Women's Ekiden champion team Universal Entertainment who left the team at the end of last season tested positive for a banned substance in a doping test carried out at the ekiden. Universal Entertainment won the national championship race, its second-ever title and first in five years. But because the athlete's result will be annulled the team will also be stripped of its title, an unprecedented situation in the ekiden's history.

According to an involved source, before the race the athlete took her own personal medicine which included the prohibited substance. The athlete denied having taking the medicine in order to enhance her performance. Team management claimed the athlete had not informed then that she was taking it, and that the situation was the result of her personal carelessness.

The Universal Entertainment team was founded under the name Aruze…

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…

Weekend Track Highlights

Distance action at the senior level was split between three main meets this weekend. One contingent of Japanese women and men headed to Europe for a mini tour of the circuit, starting things off Saturday at Belgium's Kortrijkse Guildensporenmeeting. One of Japan's top current half marathoners, Mao Ichiyama (Wacoal) ran a season best 15:36.11 for 4th in the women's 5000 m to lead the five Japanese women in the race. National XC runner-up Kosei Yamaguchi (Aisan Kogyo) led the Japanese men in the 3000 m SC in 8:37.81. The popular Hazuma Hattori (Toenec) was the fastest Japanese man in the 1500 m at 3:45.17, with Nokoka Hosaka (Tokyo Nogyo Univ.) delivering the fastest Japanese women's time at 4:25.40.

Also Saturday back home in Hokkaido, the Hokuren Distance Challenge series wrapped up with the Shibetsu meet. Women's 5000 m A-heat winner Yuka Hori (Panasonic) was just off Ichiyama's Belgian time in 15:37.51 just ahead of Honami Maeda (Tenmaya), who continued a gr…