Skip to main content

Osaka Geijutsu University Takes Nikko Irohazaka Women's Ekiden

13 teams from 12 universities raced the 4th edition of the all-uphill Nikko Irohazaka Women's Ekiden Nov. 26 in Nikko, Tochigi. Osaka Geijutsu University took the top spot for the first time in 1:32:53, with Hakuoh University the top-finishing Tochigi school at 5th.

The first runners in the ekiden started in Nikko's Daiyagawa Park. Running around the Nikkonoshaji UNESCO World Heritage Site, the women in the race handed off the tasuki on the sharp curves leading up the mountain to the finish at Nikko Futarasan Shrine on the shores of Lake Chuzenji. All together the six women on each teach covered 23.4 km with 875 m of net climb, local residents and each school's supporters cheering them on from the roadside the entire way.

Starting the Fourth Stage in 3rd, Osaka Geijutsu fourth-year Riri Shiraishi moved up to 1st, and on the Fifth and Sixth Stages the team increased its lead over the rest of the field. First-year anchor Yumika Nagahama smiled and raised both arms in the air as she broke the finishing tape. Shiraishi looked back on the race with satisfaction at achieving the win, saying, "We were here to win. The uphill was harder than I expected, but we'd done the hard training for it and I was confident that we wouldn't loose on the climb."

Hakuoh's result was an improvement on its 7th-place finish last year. Running the Fifth Stage for the third year in a row, fourth-year Rumi Sakata smiled as she said, "Going around the curves one by one I focused on improving our position, and that helped me stay on the attack. I hope that next year's team can take strength from the local support and target the win."

Translator's note: Osaka Geijutsu anchor Yumika Nagahama may be better remembered as the snow-covered leader at January's National Women's Ekiden, a race criticized in Chinese media for being too cruel due to the conditions. Needless to say, she evidently survived that race to go on to bigger things.

4th Nikko Irohazaka Women's Ekiden

Nikko, Tochigi, 11/26/17
13 teams, 6 stages, 23.4 km, 875 m net climb
click here for complete results

Top Team Results
1. Osaka Geijutsu University - 1:32:53
2. Tokyo Nogyo University A - 1:34:24
3. Kansai Gaikokugo University - 1:36:49
4. Tokyo Nogyo University B - 1:39:01
5. Hakuoh University - 1:39:10

Top Individual Stage Performances
First Stage (4.7 km, ~100 m climb) - Kanoko Otsu (Osaka Geijutsu Univ.) - 17:05
Second Stage (5.2 km, ~200 m climb) - Rino Kojima (Chuo Univ.) - 18:12
Third Stage (3.5 km, ~100 m climb) - Sae Harada (Tokyo Nogyo Univ. A) - 15:26
Fourth Stage (3.0 km, ~100 m climb) - Riri Shiraishi (Osaka Geijutsu Univ.) - 13:54
Fifth Stage (3.5 km, ~100 m climb) - Chisato Nagai (Osaka Geijutsu Univ.) - 14:22
Sixth Stage (3.5 km, ~25 m descent) - Yumika Nagahama (Osaka Geijutsu Univ.) - 12:10

source article: 
http://www.sankei.com/region/news/171127/rgn1711270031-n1.html
translated by Brett Larner

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kimunyan Runs Fastest-Ever 10000 m in Japan, Iizawa Up to 1500 m All-Time #2 - Weekend Track Update

Three big pre-ekiden season meets happened this weekend and produced some big results. Saturday at the Nittai University Time Trials in Yokohama, Richard Kimunyan (Hitachi Butsuryu) and Benard Koech (Kyudenko) pushed each other under Josphat Ndambiri 's longstanding 10000 m Japan all-comers record of 26:57.36, Kimunyan setting the new record at 26:54.76 and Koech next in 26:55.04. Those times made them the only Kenyans under 27 minutes this year worldwide, with the Hachioji Long Distance meet still to come next month. Three others were under 27:30 led by Jonathan Ndiku (Hitachi Butsuryu) in 27:12.84, with Kazuya Shiojiri (Fujitsu) the top Japanese man at 6th in 27:53.00. Justus Soget (Honda) took the 5000 m A-heat in 13:24.01, the top five all under 13:30 and another Fujitsu runner, Olympian Hiroki Matsueda , filling the top Japanese spot at 8th in 13:34.62. Harumi Okamoto (Yamada Holdings) won the women's 5000 m A-heat in 15:49.72, and Kenyan Hellen Ekarare (Toyota Ji

Hakone Ekiden Qualifier Returns to Road Course But Family and Fans Still Banned From Start/Finish Area

On Sept. 29 the KGRR released guidelines for cheering at the 99th Hakone Ekiden Qualifying Half Marathon, scheduled for Oct. 15. The race will be put on in compliance with the JAAF's road race guidelines. For the last two years it was held on a closed course around the runway of the SDF Tachikawa Air Base runway in order to keep spectators out and reduce the risk of coronavirus infection. This year it will return to its traditional course starting on the runway, heading out onto the Tachikawa city streets, and finishing in Showa Kinen Park next to the SDF base. But the KGRR guidelines call for spectators to stay away, saying, "Athletes can feel your support even if you're not along the course. We ask all ekidens to watch this year's race on TV." All athletes and team staff, race organizers and other official personnel must file information on their physical condition for the 10 days before the race. Only those categories of people and university cheerleader tea

Osaka International Women's Marathon Changes to Hillier New Course

Part of the course for the 42nd Osaka International Women's Marathon to be held on Jan. 29 next year will changed, doubling its maximum elevation difference to 18 m with a hilly new section. 2004 Athens Olympics marathon gold medalist and national record holder Mizuki Noguchi was optimistic about the course change helping to produce fast times, saying, "When there are moderate undulations it's easier to get into a rhythm." Noguchi had success at the Olympics and elsewhere by attacking on hills. The new section of the Osaka International course on Nagahori-dori after 20 km features a series of uphills and downhills. Noguchi expects the section to play an important part in the race. "People might be thinking of changing the dynamic there, of shaking up the lead group. It's going to be a good thing." Another key change on the course is the elimination of the turnaround point at Midosuji just before 30 km. "If there's a 180˚ turn you have to slow