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Showing posts from May, 2022

Onyiego Breaks Yamanakako Road Race Course Record

After two straight years of cancelation, 5155 people ran the 42nd Yamanakako Road Race in Sunday in Yamanashi, covering one 13.6 km lap around Lake Yamanaka. Paul Onyiego , 22, won the men's race, setting a new course record of 40:52. A graduate of Yamanashi Gakuin University , Onyiego now runs for local corporate team Fujino Meisui . The Kenyan commented, "It was hot out there, so it was a tough race. I sped up over the last 5 km." The Fujino Meisui team is aiming to qualify for next year's New Year Ekiden for the first time. "As the team's top runner I want to help take things to the next level," he said. 2019 winner Eri Oda , 38, won the women's race again in 50:22. All on her own after 2 km, Oda said, "The view of Mt. Fuji over the lake was really beautiful, so I took some pictures of it while I was running. It was hot and sunny, but even though the conditions were tough Mt. Fuji helped me get through it feeling good." Hiroyasu Yamaz

Shimoda Qualifies for Paris Olympic Trials at Ottawa Marathon

Three Japanese athletes ran Sunday's Tartan Ottawa International Marathon in an effort to score qualifying marks for the 2023 MGC Race, Japan's marathon trials for the 2024 Paris Olympics. In the men's race, Yuta Shimoda (GMO) and Takumi Oishi (Suzuki) went with the leaders all the way until eventual winner Andualem Shiferaw (Ethiopia) made his move before 30 km. Shiferaw, the favorite with a best of 2:05:52, was stellar over the second half, going 1:03:52 / 1:02:12 to set a new course record 2:06:04 for the win. When Shiferaw attacked, Oishi, coached by 2010 Ottawa winner Arata Fujiwara , immediately dropped off, ultimately finishing 8th in 2:15:50. Shimoda, who ran 2:08:35 at March's Tokyo Marathon and needed to run 2:11:25 here to qualify for the trials, hung on to 3rd, overtaken by Abdi Ali Gelchu (Bahrain) and dropping to 4th at one point but running down Leonard Langat (Kenya) just before the finish to retake 3rd. Yamaguchi went out in a pack of 6 women that

Meet Takumi Oishi and Haruka Yamaguchi, Going for Olympic Trials Qualification in Ottawa Sunday

Running with support from JRN, Takumi Oishi and Haruka Yamaguchi will be making their Canadian debuts at Sunday's Tartan Ottawa International Marathon . Japan's Olympic marathon trials are the hardest marathon in the world to qualify for, and both Oishi and Yamaguchi will be going for times that will help put them in position to make the September 2023 trials race. The auto-qualifier times for races outside Japan, 2:08:00 for men and 2:24:00, are pretty ambitious, but with an option for qualifying via a two-race average of 2:10:00 for men and 2:28:00 for women both Oishi and Yamaguchi will be aiming to get under those times in Ottawa before hitting a second race next winter. Oishi, a graduate of Josai University , was 4th on the Eighth Stage at the 2018 Hakone Ekiden. He now runs for the Suzuki corporate team alongside 2021 Fukuoka International Marathon winner Michael Githae . His coach at Suzuki is Arata Fujiwara , who won Ottawa in 2010 in 2:09:34, the first man to brea

Training in Sugadaira With the Chudenko Corporate Team

On May 26 the Chudenko  corporate men's team posted video from their track season training camp in Sugadaira, Nagano, one of Japan's main training locales at around 1500 m elevation. Chudenko's roster includes 2:08:44 marathoner Naoki Aiba , 2:09:14 marathoner Kohei Futaoka  and 59:34 half marathoner Amos Kurgat . Workouts detailed in the video: Group morning jog at 4:10~4:20/km. 400 m x 10 for Aiba, Kurgat and Donald Mitei  with two Kenyan athletes from another team, building up from 64 to 61 sec with 65 sec walking recovery. The next day, 400 m x 10 by the rest of the team split into two groups. The next day, 25 km at 3:42/km. On the 7th day of the training camp, 1000 m x 8 targeting 2:45/km for Aiba, Kurgat and Mitei with the same two athletes from another team. Actual times are given on-screen. The rest of the team did 600 m x 10 and 400 m x 5, split into two groups, a fast group at 68 sec/lap and a slow group at 70 sec/lap. The final track workout at the camp was 2000

'Mongolia's Marathon Stalwart Bat-Ochir Remains In It For the Long Run' Mongolia national record holder Ser-Od Bat-Ochir  has been based in Japan since 2014, first running for the NTN  corporate team and as of April now sponsored by Shin Nihon Jusetsu . Photo © 2021 Brett Larner, all rights reserved.

Fujimoto Breaks Half Marathon MR, Miura Closes 5000 in 54 - Kanto Regionals Day Four Highlights

Japan's biggest collegiate meet wrapped up Sunday with some of the best races at the 101st Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships . Things started at 8:15 a.m. with the D2 men's half marathon , a start on the track at the 2020 Olympic stadium and run up to the nearby Kaigakan road loop, where the field ran 19 laps of 1 km before going back to finish on the stadium. Luka Musembi (Tokyo Kokusai Univ.) took things out just under 3:00/km and more or less led through 15 km in 45:10 before Kenzo Ijichi (Koku Gakuin Univ.) dropped the fastest split in the race, 14:39 from 15 to 20 km, to open an 11-second lead over a chase pack including Musembi, sub-61 and sub-62 Komazawa University teammates Chikaro Yamano and Kyosuke Hanao , three runners from Aoyama Gakuin University , and his KGU teammate Genta Tsuru . Hanao tried to close it down over the last km, but Ijichi was too far away and took the win in 1:02:50. Hanao was 2nd in 1:02:56, with AGU's Ryo Nishikubo w

Fukuda and Yamaura Break Meet Records on Kanto Regionals Day Three

The 101st Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships rolled on Saturday at Tokyo's National Stadium. Shota Fukuda (Nihon Univ.) turned in the performance of the day, breaking his own D1 men's hammer throw MR on his 3rd attempt with a throw of 69.49 m. After fouling his 4th attempt, Fukuda came back in the 5th round to do it again with a 69.88 m throw for the win. Along with the new meet records in the women's 1500 m and D1 men's shot put yesterday , another MR from the mid-90s fell in the D2 men's long jump . Keito Yamaura (Kokusai Budo Univ.) tied the old record of 7.66 m from 1995 on his first attempt, then broke it on his final attempt with a new record of 7.71 m (+0.4). Koki Matsuoka (Daito Bunka Univ.) came close to the old mark too, closing with a PB 7.62 m (+0.0) on his last jump for 2nd. The only man in the D1 men's 10000 mRW field to have broken 40 minutes, Ryo Hamanishi (Meiji Univ.) soloed the win in 40:05.25. The next three athlete

Kanto Regionals Day Three Streaming and Preview

Saturday is day three of the 101st Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships at Tokyo's National Stadium. It's a day mostly dedicated to qualifying rounds for Sunday, the only track final being the D1 10000 mRW at 17:55. Toyo University dominates the D1 men's walks, both the meet and collegiate records being held by Toyo alumni Daisuke Matsunaga and Koki Ikeda . But the favorite this time around is 4th-year Ryo Hamanishi (Meiji Univ.), with a best of 39:23.40 the only athlete in the race under 40 minutes. Only three others, Kento Yoshikawa (Tokyo Gakugei Univ.), Eiji Suzuki (Tokai Univ.) and Mitsuki Murate (Tokyo Gakugei Univ.), have broken 41 minutes, meaning it'll take a pretty big upset for Toyo to be in the game. The women's heptathlon also gets underway, its meet record of 5633 having come last year via Karin Odama (Nittai Univ.). Field event finals include the D1 men's high jump, D1 men's pole vault, women's triple jump, D1 men&

Katagihara Breaks 25-Year-Old 1500 m Meet Record - Kanto Regionals Day Two Highlights

The 101st Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships continued Friday at Tokyo's National Stadium. The biggest news of the day was in the women's 1500 m final , where Saki Katagihara (Tsukuba Univ.) broke the 4:16.64 meet record set way back in 1997 by another Tsukuba athlete, Kumiko Okamoto , to win in 4:16.41. Okamoto had pressure from Mao Kogure (Juntendo Univ.) over the last lap but held her off in the home straight, Kogure running a PB 4:16.87 for 2nd and just missing hitting the old MR too. 3rd-placer Risa Yamazaki (Nittai Univ.) was also under 4:20 at 4:18.51, with collegiate record holder Mizuki Michishita (Rikkyo Univ.) 4th in 4:20.65. Another ancient MR fell in the D1 men's shot put . On his final attempt, favorite Hitoshi Okumura (Kokushikan Univ.) threw a PB 18.26 m for the win, 0.11 m further than the 1998-era meet record of 18.15 m by Yasuo Noguchi (Nihon Univ.). The top 4 all threw PBs. With his senior year having just begun Okumura is now

Kanto Regionals Day Two Streaming and Preview

The 101st  Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships continue today at Tokyo's National Stadium, the whole thing streamed live by organizers KGRR. It's a busy day, with finals in the women's and both D1 and D2 men's 1500 m, 100 mH and 110 mH, 100 m, 400 m and 4x100 m relay, plus the women's 10000 m RW, men's triple jump, women's high jump, men's shot put, women's hammer throw, the second half of the decathlon, and the qualifying heats in the men's 5000 m. The complete schedule for the day is here , with live results to be had here . With Nihon University having run the 3rd-fastest collegiate time ever in the D1 men's 4x100 m heats , 38.72, the final at 17:40 local time could be the main event of the day. Nihon was just 0.18 from the collegiate record set back in 2010 in the old Olympic stadium by a Chuo University squad anchored by Shota Iizuka , and there's a lot of hope they can build on their first-round run to get it i

Kiplimo, Kuroda and Iyoda Take Kanto Regionals 10000 m Titles - Day One Highlights

The Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships returned to Tokyo's National Stadium Thursday for the first of four straight days in its 101st edition. Favorite Noah Kiplimo (Nihon Yakka Univ.) won the meet's first track final, taking the D2 men's 10000 m in 28:28.58. Kiplimo led most of the race, alternating first with Kiyoto Hirabayashi (Koku Gakuin Univ.) and then Kotaro Shinohara (Komazawa Univ.) before pulling away with only Hironori Kishimoto (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) and Patrick Kamau (Jobu Univ.) left behind him. The 1st-year Kamau couldn't match the two 4th-years' closing speed and dropped to the 3rd in 28:31.41, but Kishimoto nearly pulled off an upset as he took 2nd in 28:28.94. Hirabayashi and Shinohara dropped to 6th and 8th, but both went home with new PBs of 28:36.32 and 28:41.13. The women's 10000 m was pretty similar, with Mao Kuroda (Nittai Univ.) leading most of the way on 33 minute-high pace in a pack including teammate Momoko

Kanto Regionals Kick Off Today - Day One Streaming and Preview

Japan's best collegiate meet returns to Tokyo's National Stadium for the first time since 2013, with the Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships happening there over the next four days. The KGRR will be streaming the whole thing live, with entry lists and live results here . Highlights on Day One include: Just a 2nd-year at Aoyama Gakuin University , Yu Ishikawa is already looking like she has potential to break the 13-year-old collegiate record of 11.32 in the women's 100 m. Her best of 11.48 leads the way in the heats. Toyo University 1st-year Hiroki Yanagita leads the entries in the men's 100 m with a best of 10.22. Toyo is the favorite in the men's 400 m too, with 3rd-year Joseph Nakajima leading the entries at 46.09. Chuo University 4th-year Airi Oshima is ranked #1 in the women's 400 m at 54.25. 4th-year Kazuto Iizawa of Tokai University is the only man entered in the 1500 m heats with a best under 3:40, coming in with a 3:38.55, bu

Sprinter Shoji Tomihisa Retires From Athletics at 105

A retirement ceremony for local masters track and field legend Shoji Tomihisa , 105, was held May 13 at his usual training ground at Miyoshi Sports Park Field in Miyoshi, Hiroshima. Tomihisa began competing in athletics at age 97, setting a Japanese national record 16.98 for 60 m in the men's 100~104 age group at the 2017 Chugoku Masters Track and Field meet. Last year Tomihisa was the oldest person in Hiroshima selected to run as a torchbearer in the Tokyo Olympics torch relay. Due to the coronavirus pandemic the relay on public roads was canceled, and while he did take part in related ceremonies his run was ultimately canceled. Tomihisa recently took up the shot put, but in light of his fading physical strength he made the decision to retire from competition. Around 30 members of the Shoji Tomihisa Booster Club attended the retirement ceremony. After receiving a bouquet of flowers from them Tomihisa in turn gave them a colored paper placard on which he had written the characters

Towada Hachimantai Ekiden to Return Aug. 7 for 75th Anniversary Edition

Canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the organizing committee of the Towada Hachimantai Ekiden have announced that the race will return this year for its 75th anniversary. The ekiden will take place Aug. 7 with both women's and men's divisions and will be held with strict COVID countermeasures in place. Organizers hope that its return for the first time since 2019 will bring more popularity and exciting racing than ever before. The organizing committee made the decision to commit to going ahead with this year's race at a meeting at Kazuno City Hall on May 10. At the meeting they determined the terms under which the ekiden will take place and how to proceed with preparing to put it on. Team entries will be accepted until July 8. Known as the Jupachi Ekiden, an abbreviated reading of the kanji making up the event's full name, the race was founded in 1948. Each year, dozens of university, corporate league and local club teams compete. Its ca

Muthoni Runs 3rd-Fastest 3000 m in World, Kenyans Break 9 Meet Records - Corporate Regionals Weekend Roundup

Regional corporate track and field championships made up most of the weekend's major action, with Japan-based African athletes setting new meet records across the country. The Chugoku Region Corporate Meet in Miyoshi, Hiroshima was split between the last two weekends, with the 5000 m held last weekend and everything else this weekend. Teresiah Muthoni (Daiso) and teammate  Rebecca Mwangi crushed the 5000 m MR by over 20 seconds, Muthoni running 14:55.23 and Mwangi 14:57.79. A week later Muthoni was back in the 3000 m, where she took over 35 seconds off the MR with a solid 8:39.91 for the win, the 3rd-fastest time in the world this year. Mwangi opted to double in the 10000 m, taking over 35 seconds off that MR to win in 31:28.28. Following up on her comeback win at the Sendai International Half Marathon , Tokyo Olympics marathoner Honami Maeda (Tenmaya) had a good run for 2nd in 32:18.69. Hillary Mosop (Mazda) had a near miss on the men's 1500 m MR, winning 3:44.94 just

The Undeath of Historic Japanese Marathons: Lake Biwa Comeback Planned for 2023

After seeing its final edition in Shiga last year and then being absorbed into the Osaka Marathon  in March this year, the legacy of the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon will continue with a successor race to be held on Mar. 12 next year. Since the previous event wrapped up, the Shiga prefectural government has been examining holding a mass-participation race celebrating the tradition of the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon and has been looking at potential course and date options. In January they sought suggestions for a name for the event and selected "Lake Biwa Marathon" from among the submissions. The organizing committee came together in April to determine the new event's date and course. The race will begin at Ojiyama Field, historical starting point of the former race, and will cross Omi Bridge before heading north along Lake Biwa's eastern shore. Covering 42.195 km, it will feature a turnaround point in Moriyama before finishing at Lake Biwa Museum located on the Kara

Akashi Park's Track May Lose Certification Due to Lane Width Rule Change

The Kishiro Stadium athletics track in Akashi Park in the city of Akashi, Hyogo, is on the brink of losing its official certification by the JAAF. Official certification must be renewed every 5 years, but due to a change in regulations over lane width the longstanding facility no longer meets the criteria for official certification.  Official track facilities are divided into four categories based upon factors such as spectator capacity and warmup track availability. If a track is not certified, no performances at any competitions held there will be recognized as official marks. The Akashi Park track, a Class 3 facility, has a total of 8 lanes of 1.25 m width each. The JAAF rulebook originally specified lane widths of 1.22 m or 1.25 m, but in 2019 this was modified to meet international standards by recognizing only the 1.22 m lane width. As a result, Akashi will be forced to meet the new criteria by the time of its next certification in the spring of 2023. Opened in 1949, the Akashi

Guinness Officially Recognizes Suzuki and Ichiyama as Fastest Married Marathoners

2022 Oregon World Championships marathon team members Kengo Suzuki (Fujitsu) and Mao Ichiyama (Shiseido) have been officially recognized as holders of the world record for fastest combined time by a married couple in the same marathon. Guinness World Records tweeted a video of the couple receiving their world record certification on its official Twitter account on May 11. At the Mar. 6 Tokyo Marathon , Suzuki, the men's national record holder, ran the 2nd-fastest Japanese men's time ever, 2:05:28, to finish 4th overall. Ichiyama, the women-only national record holder and 8th-placer in the Tokyo Olympics marathon, ran 2:21:02 for 6th. Their combined time of 4:26:30 beat the previous Guinness World Record by over a minute, earning them the distinction of becoming the world's fastest married couple. お待たせしました🌟今年の東京マラソンでギネス世界記録「夫婦によるマラソン完走の最速合計タイム」を更新した一山麻緒選手と鈴木健吾選手に無事公式認定証をお届けすることができました!改めて、記録達成おめでとうございます😆🎉💕 — ギネス世界記録|書籍『ギネス世界記録2022』OUT NOW (@GW

Akiyama, Omi and Otagiri Win Ueda Vertical Race and Sky Race

Part of the 2022 Skyrunner Japan Series (SJS), the Ueda Vertical Race and Ueda Sky Race took place May 3 and 4 in Ueda, Nagano. Put on by the Japan Skyrunning Association, SJS is the peak of the domestic mountain running circuit. Founded in 2015 and now in its 8th season, the series has made a fresh start with the Swiss company Norqain as its official timekeeper. The first day of racing featured the Ueda Vertical Race, 5 km with 1000 m of climb. Honoka Akiyama won the women's race in 54:31, Karen Kobayashi taking 2nd and Suzuha Kusuda (Team Sky Kyoto) 3rd. In the men's race Ryunsoke Omi (Team Sky Kyoto) took the top spot in 43:47, with Tomofumi Miyagawa 2nd and Miki Ushida 3rd. The 2021 National Sky Champion, Akiyama joined last year's SJS during its 2nd half. Ueda was her 5th win, 3 of which came in Vertical Kilometer races. "I'd been targeting the course record of 49:54 (set in 2017 by Yuri Yoshizumi ), but I wasn't even close," she said post-race

Takahashi Tells Fuwa "No Need to Overdo It" After Nationals Withdrawal

Appearing on the news23 program on May 9, former women's marathon world record holder and Sydney Olympics marathon gold medalist Naoko Takahashi commented on 19-year-old Takushoku University 2nd-year Seira Fuwa 's withdrawal from the May 7 10000 m National Championships , the qualifying event for this summer's Oregon World Championships. "There's no need to overdue it," Takahashi said. "She's someone with the talent and ability to run 30:45.21, the 2nd-fastest time in Japanese history, in her first time running the 10000 m, an extremely high-potential athlete. The most important thing for her right now is to take it easy and fully recover from her injury. She's just 19 and has only just started on the road to realizing her dreams, and I'd like to ask everyone out there to support her in the longterm. Let's all take good care of her." Last month Takahashi interviewed Fuwa for the program, telling her, "If I had to say one thing

Miura Headlines Kanto Regionals 5000 m, Tazawa and Fuwa Not Entered

On May 9 the KGRR released the entry lists for this year's Kanto Region University Track and Field Championships to be held May 19-22 at Tokyo's National Stadium. Along with the Hakone Ekiden, the Kanto Regionals meet is one of the two most competitive collegiate competitions in Japan. It was held in the old National Stadium until 2013, and its return to the new version of the stadium this year after 9 years away restores some of its prestige and promises higher levels of excitement than ever before. 7th in the men's 3000 mSC final at last summer's Tokyo Olympics, 3rd-year  Ryuji Miura  (Juntendo Univ.) is skipping his speciality event to run the 5000 m. In past years the 5000 m was held as a straight final, but this year's program will include semis and a final. At last year's Kanto Regionals Miura won the 1500 m and was 2nd in the 5000 m. This year he will seek to overcome tough Kenyan competition to take the 5000 m title for the first time. The top-level co