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Hironaka Breaks Fukushi's 5000 m NR - Tokyo Olympics Athletics Day Four Japanese Results

In the morning session on day four of track and field competition at the Tokyo Olympics, Yuki Hashioka became the first Japanese man since the 1984 Los Angeles Games to make an Olympic long jump top eight. Having jumped 8.17 m in the qualifying round to rank 3rd in the final, Hashioka struggled to perform up to ability. making the top 8 cutoff after three jumps but failing to clear 8 m.  On his final jump he delivered a 8.10 m to place 6th, visibly disappointed but still the best Japanese men's Olympic performance in 37 years and 8 cm further than Junichi Usui 's bronze medal jump in Los Angeles. In the women's 1500 m heats, Nozomi Tanaka  shaved another sliver off her record to qualify for the semifinal in 4:02.33. Past national champion  Ran Urabe  ran a PB 4:07.90 but did not advance. In the evening session,  Ryuji Miura  was the lone Japanese man in the men's 3000 m steeplechase final in just his second serious international race, the first being his national recor
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'On the Street Outside the Olympic Stadium: “This is a Fake Olympics”' A story by JRN's Mika Tokairin  for Podium Runner on what people in the streets around the Olympic Stadium are saying as Tokyo 2020 track and field competition goes on. Photo © 2021 Mika Tokairin, all rights reserved

Tokyo Olympics Athletics Day Three Japanese Results

Women's 3000 m steeplechase national champion Yuno Yamanaka led off the home team's campaign on the third day of track and field competition at the Tokyo Olympic Games . Still just 20 years old, Yamanaka, the younger sister of 2014 National University Men's Half Marathon champion Hideto Yamanaka , went out at national record pace, mostly at the end of the pack but moving up one by one as other athletes faded. Yamanaka ended up 10th in her heat in 9:43.83 and didn't advance, but in post-race interviews she was optimistic about her chances of breaking the national record and making the final in Paris three years from now. Having skipped June's National Championships 400 m with an injury, Julian Walsh  was the only other Japanese athlete in action in the morning session, running the men's 400 m heats. Walsh was far off his best, running only 46.57 to finish 6th in his heat and not advance. Also entered in the 4x400 m relay, Walsh may still make another appearance,

Terada and Hashioka Advance - Tokyo Olympics Athletics Day Two Japanese Results

On the second day of track and field at the Tokyo Olympic Games , joint national record holder in the 100 m hurdles  Asuka Terada  became the first Japanese woman since 2000 to make an Olympic semifinal, running just 0.08 off her NR. Running in the fifth heat, Terada had a good start and hung on to clock 12.95 (+0.3), the fastest among time qualifiers. Her NR co-holder Masami Aoki  and veteran Ayako Kimura  both failed to move on, Aoki finishing 7th in the third heat and Kimura 7th in the opening heat. In the men's pole vault, neither Seito Yamamoto  nor Masaki Ejima  advanced out of the qualification round. Both cleared only 5.30 m to finish near the bottom of the field. In the evening session, Yuki Hashioka  had a great showing in the men's long jump qualification round, winning his group with a jump of 8.17 m, third-best in the field overall and one of only three athletes to hit the auto-qualifying standard. National record holder Shotaro Shiroyama  and third man Hibiki Tsu

Prosecutor's Office Files Charges Against Hakone Ekiden Champ Komazawa University's Anchor in Underage Sex Case

On July 30 the Yokohama District Prosecutor's Office filed charges against Takuma Ishikawa , 21, anchor of Komazawa University 's 2021 Hakone Ekiden winning team. Ishikawa is charged with committing obscene acts with a 17-year-old high school girl in violation of the Kanagawa Prefecture Ordinance of Juvenile Protection. The prosecutor's office did not indicate whether the filing has been approved yet or not. According to the indictment, with full knowledge that the girl was under age 18, Ishikawa committed indecent acts with her on Dec. 20 last year and Jan. 17 this year, and saved video of additional obscene acts with her to his phone in February.  Kanagawa Prefectural Police said that the two met in late October last year through a dating app. Although they met in person both before and after the Hakone Ekiden, police say the girl had no knowledge that Ishikawa was the anchor of the winning team. On January 3 Ishikawa came from over a kilometer behind to dramatically ru

19-Year-Old Ryuji Miura Breaks 3000m Steeplechase NR to Kick Off Tokyo Olympics Athletics Day One

Juntendo University 2nd-year Ryuji Miura  is the most exciting thing to have appeared on the Japanese scene in the last year, seeming to come from our of nowhere to just miss the 3000 m steeplechase NR last summer at age 18, breaking Suguru Osako 's U20 half marathon national record last fall, and then rewriting the 3000 m SC NR twice since turning 19 in February this year. In his first real race against international competition Miura kicked off track and field action at the Tokyo Olympics by taking 6 seconds off his own 3000 mSC NR to finish 2nd in the opening heat in 8:09.92. Miura's time was fast enough to have medaled at all but two past Olympics and auto-qualifying him for what looks to be a very fast final, making him the first Japanese man to make an Olympic steeple final since 1972 Miura was calm and relaxed throughout the race, staying in the top 5 the whole way and moving to the front when he needed to. Over the last lap he challenged 2019 Doha World Championships

Suspicious Fires Reported Along Olympic Marathon Course

A fire was discovered in Sapporo's Odori Park, start and finish point of the Tokyo Olympics women's and men's marathons. Smoke was seen coming from a stump in the park. Three days ago, another stump was found burning suspiciously in Nakajima Park near the marathon course's southernmost point.  Police received a call reporting the burning stump at around 10:00 a.m. on July 29. One of the people who helped put the fire out said, "The smoke was heavy and the fire wouldn't go out even when we poured water on it." Afterward the stump, located behind a public restroom in the Odori Park, appeared charred and blackened.  Several cigarette butts were found at the site, which is to host the Tokyo Olympic Games marathons on Aug. 7 and 8. On the evening of July 26 the other suspicious fire occurred outside the Hokkaido Prefectural Museum of Literature along the marathon course in Nakajima Park. A tree stump next to the sidewalk in front of the museum was found to be b

Japanese Athletes to Watch at Tokyo Olympics

As of right now, five days into the Tokyo Olympic Games , Japan leads the medal standings with 13 gold, 4 silver and 5 bronze medals. Across sports Japanese athletes have been performing at the top level, showing both the benefits of increased investment in development over the last eight years since Japan won the 2020 Olympic bid and the home ground advantage. Track and field starts tomorrow, and while compared to some other sports it's one of Japan's weaker spots, it has a realistic shot at six medals with another eleven top 8 finishes in range. Your guide to who to watch for from the home team on the track, field and roads. Medal Chances Back when Japan first competed in the Olympics in Stockholm in 1912 it had exactly two athletes on its entire team, one marathoner and one sprinter. 109 years later not much has changed. Distance and sprints are still Japan's best chances of medaling, the race walks taking the place of the marathon, and the 4x100 m relay one of the most