Along with the National Cross-Country Championships and Tokyo Marathon, the weekend saw competitive half marathons across the country and nearby in South Korea.
Yuta Shimoda of four-time Hakone Ekiden champion Aoyama Gakuin University turned the fastest time of the weekend with a 1:03:20 win at the Kashima Yutoku Road Race half marathon, beating sometime training partner Aritaka Kajiwara (Hiramatsu Byoin) by 35 seconds.
A week after his course record-breaking win at the Kitakyushu Marathon, Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) won the local Fukaya City Half Marathon in Saitama in 1:04:26, beating corporate leaguer Rui Watanabe (Shindengen) by 29 seconds. Amateur Tomomi Sawahata (Sawahatters) scored yet another road race win in 1:15:42, the fastest time of the weekend by a Japanese woman.
At the 40th anniversary running of the Inuyama Yomiuri Half Marathon, Toyo University first-year Ryoga Asai won in 1:04:44. Eri Watanabe (Aichi Denki) took the women's race in 1:16:30.
Across the seas in South Korea, former Konica Minolta runner Samuel Kariuki (Kenya) took 10 seconds off the course record to win the Gyeonggi International Half Marathon in 1:02:30. Japan's Kohei Nakajima (Josai Univ.) led the second pack to take 4th overall in 1:04:33 in a sprint finish against South Korea's Jae Hoon Kim and Mongolian Dambadarjaa Gantulga.
67th Kashima Yutoku Road RaceKashima, Saga 2/25/18
Men's Half Marathon
1. Yuta Shimoda (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 1:03:20
2. Aritaka Kajiwara (Hiramatsu Byoin) - 1:03:55
3. Ryosuke Nara (Daito Bunka Univ.) - 1:04:00
4. Shun Sadakata (Toyo Univ.) - 1:04:39
5. Ayumu Tsutsumi (Tokyo Kokusai Univ.) - 1:05:26
6. Tomoya Kaneko (Nihon Univ.) - 1:05:42
Women's Half Marathon
1. Natsumi Morino 1:22:13
Men's 10 km
1. Ryuichi Hashimoto 29:45
Women's 10 km
1. Misa Kanda 34:43
12th Fukaya City Half MarathonFukaya, Saitama 2/25/18
1. Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) - 1:04:26
2. Rui Watanabe (Shindengen) - 1:04:55
1. Tomomi Sawahata (Sawahatters) - 1:15:42
40th Inuyama Yomiuri Half MarathonInuyama, Aichi 2/25/18
1. Ryoga Asai (Toyo Univ.) - 1:04:44
1. Eri Watanabe (Aichi Denki) - 1:16:30
Men's 10 km
1. Hayate Takeuchi (NTN) - 30:03
Women's 10 km
1. Honoka Sugiura (Chukyo Univ.) - 34:10
Gyeonggi International Half MarathonSuwon, South Korea 2/25/18
1. Samuel Kariuki (KEN) 1:02:30 - CR
2. Abebe Negewo Degefe (ETH) 1:02:39
3. Brahom Oukhouya (MAR) 1:02:47
4. Kohei Nakajima (JPN) 1:04:33
5. Jae Hoon Kim (KOR) 1:04:34
6. Dambadarjaa Gantulga (MGL) 1:04:36
photo © Shingo Igarashi, all rights reserved
text © 2018 Brett Larner, all rights reserved