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Fukuoka International Marathon to Go Ahead With Limited Field Size



On Sept. 12 the Fukuoka International Marathon announced that this year's race will go ahead as scheduled on Dec. 6. Usually a two-tier elite/sub-elite men's race with a field of around 400, this year's race will be cut back dramatically. Along with an elite invited field of probably 10 men, the field this year will be limited to the 80 fastest applicants with marathon qualifying marks under 2:25:00 and the 10 fastest with half marathon bests under 1:04:00. This eliminates the B-group start in Ohori Park, with the entire field starting on the track at Heiwadai Field.

Most notably for the event's "international" self-designation, applications will be "limited to runners who are able to enter and stay in Japan as of September 14 (Mon.), the day on which applications open." That pretty well eliminates anyone who is not a Japanese citizen or already a resident, even in the event of liberalization of Japan's restrictive anti-COVID immigration policies between now and race day. How that's going to apply to the invited athlete field remains to be seen, but Fukuoka is definitely capable of putting together a field that meets World Athletics gold label requirements using only Japanese and Japan-based African athletes.

Read the full announcement here.

A breakdown of the current situation among Japan's 29 main marathons from October through December and 2021 marathon announcements to date:

Oct. 4: Tohoku Miyagi Fukko Marathon (7,457) - canceled
Oct. 4: Matsumoto Marathon (6,455)- canceled
Oct. 11: Niigata City Marathon (6,784) - canceled
Oct. 18: Chiba Aqualine Marathon (9,541) - canceled
Oct. 25: Kanazawa Marathon (10,408) - canceled
Oct. 25: Mito Komon Marathon (9,995) - canceled
Oct. 25: Shimada Oikawa Marathon (6,589) - canceled
Oct. 25: Iwate Morioka City Marathon (5,729) - canceled
Nov. 1: Yokohama Marathon (25,195) - canceled
Nov. 1: Toyama Marathon (12,603) - canceled
Nov. 1: Shimonoseki Kaikyo Marathon (8,650) - canceled
Nov. 8: Okayama Marathon (13,491) - canceled
Nov. 8: Fukuoka Marathon (11,349) - canceled
Nov. 8: Ibigawa Marathon (5,818) - canceled
Nov. 15: Kobe Marathon (19,444) - canceled
Nov. 22: Tsukuba Marathon (11,461) - canceled
Nov. 23: Fukuchiyama Marathon (6,429) - canceled
Nov. 23: Ohtawara Marathon (1,697) - canceled
Nov. 29: Osaka Marathon (31,594) - canceled
Nov. 29: Mt. Fuji International Marathon (7,200) - canceled
Nov. 29 Nagasaki Peace marathon (1st running, field of 10,000) - canceled
Dec. 6: Shonan International Marathon (16,821) - postponed to Feb. 28, 2021
Dec. 6: Naha Marathon (14,660) - canceled
Dec. 6: Fukuoka International Marathon (370) - schedule with limited field size
Dec. 13: Saitama International Marathon (13,340) - canceled
Dec. 13: Nara Marathon (11,137) - canceled
Dec. 13: Aoshima Taiheiyo Marathon (8,043) - canceled
Dec. 20: Hofu Marathon (2,724) - scheduled with limited field size
Dec. 20: Mie Matsuzaka Marathon (1st running, field of 7,000) - canceled

2021

Jan. 10 - Ibusuki Nanohana Marathon (10,954) - canceled
Jan. 31 - Katsuta Marathon (10,627) - canceled
Jan. 31 - Osaka International Women's Marathon (423) - TBA
Feb. 7 - Beppu-Oita Marathon (3,141) - decision in mid-September
Feb. 14 - Ehime Marathon (9,554) - canceled
Feb. 14 - Nobeoka Nishi Nippon Marathon (536) - TBA
Feb. 21 - Kyoto Marathon (13,894) - canceled
Feb. 21 - Kochi Ryoma Marathon (10,924) - canceled
Feb. 21 - Kumamoto Castle Marathon (10,444) - canceled
Feb. 21 - Kitakyushu Marathon (9,485) - canceled
Feb. 21 - Okinawa Marathon (7,990) - canceled
Feb. 28 - Shonan International Marathon (16,821) - rescheduled from Dec. 6
Feb. 28 - Himeji Castle Marathon (6,938) - canceled
Feb. 28 - Iwaki Sunshine Marathon (5,259) - scheduled
Feb. 28 - Lake Biwa Marathon (174) - TBA
Mar. 7 - Kagoshima Marathon (9.356) - TBA
Mar. 7 - Tokyo Marathon (151) - decision in October
Mar. 14 - Shizuoka Marathon (9,802) - canceled
Mar. 14 - Nagoya Women's Marathon (96) - TBA
Mar. 21 - Koga Hanamomo Marathon (8,766) - canceled
Mar. 21 - Saga Sakura Marathon (8.509) - TBA
Mar. 28 - Sakura Marathon (5,614) - TBA
Apr. 18 - Kasumigaura Marathon (10,096) - scheduled
Apr. 18 - Nagano Marathon (8082) - TBA

© 2020 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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Comments

Andrew Armiger said…
Might this announcement serve to catalyze Tokyo Marathon's decision? I am looking forward to a rematch of many of the MGC principals.
Brett Larner said…
I think the Nagoya announcement will have a bigger effect than Fukuoka. It's nice to see a race other than Tokyo taking a leadership role.

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