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Osaka Half Marathon Elite Field Highlights

Held alongside the Osaka International Women's Marathon, its companion Osaka Half Marathon has grown from a mass-participation mixed gender event to now feature as one of Japan's top post-ekiden season half marathons. Not being a national team selection event for the World Half Marathon Championships it doesn't get many of the big names, who mostly line up a week later in Marugame, but the fields are definitely not bad.

On the women's side, last year's winner Reia Iwade (Under Armour), the fastest female Japanese marathoner of 2019, is back as the only woman in the race to have broken 70 minutes. But she has serious competition from Yuka Hori (Panasonic), only 1:11:05 at the 2018 National Corporate Half but fresh off a 31:38.63 PB for 10000 m earlier this month. 10000 m collegiate national record holder Hikari Yoshimoto (Daihatsu) should also be one of the bigger threats to Iwade after a brilliant anchor run at last month's National Corporate Women's Ekiden.

On the men's side the likable Yohei Suzuki (Aisan Kogyo) has the only recent sub-62 time in the field, but three other men, Yuki Oshikawa (NTN), Naoya Takahashi (Yasukawa Denki) and newly-crowned Swedish marathon national record holder David Nilsson all went under 1:02:10 last year and make it a seriously close race up front. Sub-2:10 marathoners Jo Fukuda (Nishitetsu), Kenji Yamamoto (Mazda) and Kohei Matsumura (MHPS) should also be near the front end if not leading.

JRN will be on-site in Osaka on race weekend. Check back closer to race date for more info and live streaming options for following the race internationally.

Osaka Half Marathon

Osaka, 1/26/20
complete elite field listing
times listed are best in last three years except where noted

Women
Reia Iwade (Under Armour) - 1:09:46 (Osaka 2019)
Yuka Hori (Panasonic) - 1:11:05 (National Corporate Half 2018)
Kotomi Tsubokura (Wacoal) - 1:11:08 (Osaka 2019)
Yuko Kikuchi (Edion) - 1:11:32 (Sanyo 2019)
Kaori Yoshida (Team RxL) - 1:11:54 (Ageo 2018)
Hikari Yoshimoto (Daihatsu) - 1:12:39 (Sendai 2019)
Mao Kiyota (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) - 1:12:41 (Gifu Seiryu 2017)
Rui Nishida (Sysmex) - 1:13:34 (Osaka 2018)
Yuki Kanehira (Sysmex) - 1:14:12 (Sanyo 2017)
Natsuki Omori (Daihatsu) - debut - 2:29:15 (Osaka Women's Marathon 2019)

Men
Yohei Suzuki (Aisan Kogyo) - 1:01:53 (Marugame 2018)
Yuki Oshikawa (NTN)  - 1:02:01 (National Corporate Half 2018)
Naoya Takahashi (Yasukawa Denki) - 1:02:01 (National Corporate Half 2018)
David Nilsson (Sweden) - 1:02:09 (Ageo 2018)
Jo Fukuda (Nishitetsu) - 1:02:25 (Marugame 2019)
Kenji Yamamoto (Mazda) - 1:02:34 (National Corporate Half 2019)
Masaki Takamoto (Subaru) - 1:02:36 (National Corporate Half 2019)
Kohei Matsumura (MHPS) - 1:02:37 (National Corporate Half 2019)
Masanori Sumida (Aichi Seiko) - 1:02:37 (National Corporate Half 2019)
Masamichi Yasuda (Aichi Seiko) - 1:02:39 (National Corporate Half 2018)
Tatsuya Maruyama (Yachiyo Kogyo) - 1:02:42 (National University Half 2019)
Shinji Yoshimoto (Kurosaki Harima) - 1:02:45 (National Corporate Half 2019)
Yuto Fujiyama (Osaka Police) - 1:02:54 (Osaka 2019)
Daichi Takeuchi (Toenec) - 1:02:59 (Osaka 2019)

© 2019 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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