Skip to main content

Fast Times from Mbuthye and Yego in Saturday Track Action



Saturday was the first full day of the Japanese outdoor track season with two large time trial meets and university intramurals across the country. The top marks of the day came over 3000 m at Tokyo's Setagaya Time Trials meet. In the women's A-heat Japan-based Kenyan Grace Mbuthye (Starts) won in 8:58.55, while another Japan-based Kenyan Evans Yego (Sunbelx) took the men's A-heat in 7:58.50. Both times were the 2nd-fastest outdoor marks in the world so far this season. Other notable marks:

  • Kei Fumimoto (Kanebo) turned in the fastest Japanese time of the day at 8:06.95 for 4th in the A-heat.
  • Junior high school 1500 m, 3000 m and 5000 m national record holder Kosuke Ishida made his high school debut in the C-heat running for Tokyo Nogyo Daini H.S., finishing 3rd in 8:22.85, about 5 seconds off his best.
  • After taking 7th at last month's NYC Half, 2017 World University Games half marathon gold medalist Kei Katanishi (Komazawa Univ.) got back into action, warming up with an 8:29.41 in the D-heat before winning the C-heat in 8:16.77. See the video above for Katanishi and Ishida in action.
  • Hakone Ekiden star turned marathoner Daichi Kamino (Konica Minolta) and 2020 Olympic Trials marathon qualifier Shogo Nakamura (Fujitsu) also got back into action, Kamino winning the D-heat in 8:19.44 and Nakamura running 8:18.67 for 16th in the A-heat.



At Kumamoto's Kanaguri Memorial Meet the main focus was on the 5000 m. Kenyan high schooler Philemon Kiplagat (Kurashiki H.S.) led the way with a 13:37.12 to win the A-heat, just faster than the 13:37.86 run by all-Kenyan B-heat winner Joel Mwaura (Kurosaki Harima). Takanori Ichikawa (Hitachi Butsuryu) ran the fastest Japanese time so far this year, 13:42.70 for 4th in the A-heat. Another 2020 Olympic Trials marathon qualifier, Yuki Sato (Nissin Shokuhin) ran 13:53.54 for 8th.



In the women's 5000 m A-heat, Helen Ekarare (Toyota Jidoshokki) won by 10 seconds in 15:29.67 ahead of Ethiopian newcomer Husan Zeyituna (Denso). 2:21 marathoner Yuka Ando (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC), yet another 2020 Olympic Trials marathon qualifier, ran her first race since January's Osaka International Women's Marathon, taking 3rd in 15:45.86.



The women's 1500 m at the Kanaguri Memorial Meet had two interesting races. In Heat 1, sisters Tomomi Musembi Takamatsu (Meijo Univ.) and Nozomi Musembi Takamatsu (Osaka T&F Assoc.) went 1-2, Tomomi taking the top spot at 4:22.10 in her university debut and former Nike Oregon Project runner Nozomi 2nd in 4:22.50. In Heat 2, pro Tomoka Kimura (Universal Entertainment) outkicked last year's #1 ranked high school Nozomi Tanaka (ND28 AC) to win in 4:22.74. Making her debut as a club runner post-graduation, Tanaka rook 2nd in 4:24.02.

Setagaya video by onychop
Kanaguri Memorial videos by tuyoshi55244
text © 2018 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

'Tokyo Unveils 2020 Olympics Logo By Kenjiro Sano'

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…

Tanaka and Hashioka Win Gold - World U20 Championships Day Two Japanese Results

Working together to execute an aggressive frontrunning team strategy born from failure two years ago in Bydgoszcz, 2018 Asian U20 3000 m gold medalist Nozomi Tanaka and 2018 Asian Junior Cross Country gold medalist Yuna Wada opened a massive lead over the African Junior Cross Country medalist Ethiopian duo of Meselu Berhe and Tsige Gebreselama in the early going of the Tampere World U20 Championships women's 3000 m. Tanaka took the lead from the gun before Wada went out front at 200 m to set a fast pace. Through splits of 3:00 and 3:03 for the first 2000 m, Tanaka kicked hard from 300 m out to close with a 2:51 for Japan's first-ever gold medal in the event, winning in a PB of 8:54.01.

Berhe and Gebreselama caught Wada on the back corner but weren't even close to matching Tanaka, taking 2nd and 3rd in PBs just under the 9-minute mark. Wada just held off Kenyan Jenali Jemutai Yego for 4th in 9:00.50, seeming happy in post-race interviews to have helped a teammate score gol…