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Showing posts from June, 2023

Gold Coast Half Marathon and Marathon Preview and Streaming

Australia's ASICS Half Marathon and Gold Coast Marathon are almost always big draws for elite-level Japanese runners, offering up better weather than to be found domestically this time of year, a faster course, and international racing experience without the jet lag. Saturday's half marathon has four Japanese women and three Japanese men on the entry list, plus a lot of familiar home-grown faces. Former U.S.A. marathon national record holder Keira D'Amato is the top name in the women's race with a best of 1:07:55. Australians Ellie Pashley and Isobel Batt-Doyle are regulars in Japan, Batt-Doyle having set her 1:09:27 PB at Marugame this year and Pashley having run her marathon best in Nagoya in 2019. D'Amato said at the pre-race press conference that she hopes to take a shot at the American record of 1:06:52, and Batt-Doyle said she would be giving it a PB effort. One step down from them in the 1:10-1:11 range are four Japanese women, Kaede Kawamura , Chiharu Ik

Former 10000 m and 3000 mSC NR holder Nunogami Passes Away

A spokesperson has confirmed that former 10000 m and 3000 mSC national record holder Masayuki Nunogami passed away on June 25 after an illness. He was 89. A native of Kumamoto, Nunogami ran the Hakone Ekiden three times starting his 2nd year at Chuo University . At the 31st edition in 1955 he won the Seventh Stage, and the following year he was fastest on the Tenth Stage as well, breaking the finish line tape to give Chuo the overall victory. After graduation Nunogami joined the Riccar corporate team. At the 1956 National Championships he beat nine-time 3000 mSC champion Susumu Takahashi to take the national title for the first time. The same year he ran a then-national record 9:04.2 in the steeplechase. At the following year's Tokyo Championships he ran 33:22.0, breaking the pre-war era NR of 33:25.0 set by Kohei Murakoso in 1936. In 1958 Nunogami won both the 3000 mSC and 5000 m national titles and took silver in the Tokyo Asian Games 3000 mSC. He was also a member of two Ne

Sadakata and Ichiyama Win Hakodate Half, NR Holder Suzuki Back in First Race Since Tokyo '22

Sunday's other big race in Hokkaido was the Hakodate Half Marathon and Marathon , where members of Japan's marathon squad for August's Budapest World Championships and qualifiers for October's MGC Race Olympic marathon trials tune up for their races. In the men's half marathon, Shun Sadakata held off Evans Kipkemei to take the win by 2 seconds in a PB and CR 1:01:37. Hideyuki Tanaka took 3rd in 1:01:40, with Dan Kiplangat the only other runner under 62 in 1:01:54 for 4th. Half marathon NR holder Yusuke Ogura was 6th in 1:02:38, and close behind him was marathon NR holder Kengo Suzuki , 7th in 1:02:46. For Suzuki it was the first time he'd made it to the starting line of a race since the March, 2022 Tokyo Marathon, and as the first MGC qualifier to finish in Hakodate his performance there was good enough to generate a collective sigh of relief. Budapest marathon team member Kazuya Nishiyama didn't have the same kind of day, only 15th in 1:03:58. Women-o

'22 World Silver Medalist Jumpei Yamaguchi Misses WR by 33 Seconds at Lake Saroma 100 km

After dropping out of a shot at the world record at last month's Shibamata 100 km , 2022 World Championships silver medalist Jumpei Yamaguchi (Eldoreso) was back to give it another go at Sunday's Lake Saroma 100 km Ultramarathon in Hokkaido. Running into a 1~2 m/s headwind for much of the race, Yamaguchi started fast, splitting 35:55 at 10 km, just on track for sub-6 hours. '22 gold medalist and Shibamata winner Haruki Okayama (Comodi Iida), two-time world champ Hideaki Yamauchi (Hamamatsu Hotniks), 2017 Lake Saroma winner Tatsuya Itagaki (Tokinosumika) and others went with him, but by 30 km it was down to just Yamauchi, Itagaki and Okayama in 1:47:48. After hitting the marathon point in 2:31:39, still sub-6 pace, Okayama fell off and ultimately dropped out. Itagaki stayed with Yamaguchi until 60 km in 3:37:09 before letting go. As the temperature hit 20˚ under cloudless skies and climbed on to 22˚ Yamaguchi's 10 km splits slowed into the 37-minute range, and the m

Drury Runs 800 m PB For Double Chugoku Region Title

Following up on her 1500 m region record two days earlier , Sherry Drury continued her solid debut high school season at Tsuyama H.S. with anther Chugoku Region High School Championships title. Running in the 800 m final, Drury ran a PB 2:08.72 for the win, 0.75 under her junior high-era best. The win opens the door for her to do the middle distance double at the National High School Championships in Sapporo later this summer.  © 2023 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

Lake Saroma Ultra and Hakodate Half - Hokkaido Road Race Weekend Preview

For the next two months most of Japan's main domestic racing on the roads and track happens up north on Hokkaido. This weekend has two major road races there, the Lake Saroma 100 km and 50 km Ultramarathon , and Hakodate Half Marathon and Marathon. The home of the women's 100 km world record and until last month the men's world record, pending ratification of Lithuanian Aleksandr Sorokin 's new mark, Lake Saroma isn't missing any of its usual top-end Japanese talent this year. After a world record attempt at May's Shibamata 100 km , last year's World Championships gold and silver medalists Haruki Okayama and Jumpei Yamaguchi are both doubling back, along with pending former WR holder Nao Kazami , two-time World Champion Hideaki Yamauchi , and more. Last year's World Championships 6th-placer Miho Nakata leads the women's field, where her main competition is 2018 Lake Saroma winner Mai Fujisawa . There's no real streaming of the race, but a fin

A Quick Guide to the Potential Japanese Team for the Budapest World Championships

There's still over a month to go until the qualifying deadline for August's Budapest World Championships . As it stands right now eight women and seventeen men have been named to the team based on the primary criteria of having the qualifying standard and having placed top three at this year's National Championships or the special criteria in events like relays and the marathon. But with a lot of Japanese athletes comfortably inside their event's quota for qualification based on world rankings those numbers will at least double by the July 30 deadline.  A quick guide to the most likely candidates for making the final team and those realistically in range of getting into the quota is below. Numbers after event headers are the current quota cutoff score for that event. Numbers after athletes' names are the current world ranking score for anyone who doesn't have the standard in their event. For athletes who do have the standard, their current rank out of the numbe

Breakthrough Runs From Bett and Maeda Lead National University Ekiden Kanto Region Qualifier

On the first day of real summer weather conditions were hot and humid enough at Kanagawa's Gion Sagamihara Stadium that 3 out of the 4 track 10000 m heats making up the National University Ekiden's Kanto Region Qualifier saw at least one runner get into trouble. In Heat One, Yuto Ono (Shibata Kogyo Univ.) was in trouble after only 3000 m, dropping off the pack and falling to his hands and knees, then getting back up and almost walking his way around another couple of laps. His coach finally stopped him, knocking SKU out of contention to make the seven-deep qualifying bracket for November's Nationals. Heat Two went relatively smoothly, Peter Wanjiru (Daito Bunka Univ.) lapping the entire field before getting caught again by the top few in the chase pack but still winning the heat by almost a minute in 29:00.50. Heat Three saw Taiga Tosen (Surugadai Univ.) staggering in the home straight and falling meters from the finish line, crawling on his hands and knees until his to

Sherry Drury Breaks Chugoku Region High School 1500 m Record

  1st-year Sherry Drury (Tsuyama H.S.) broke the Chugoku Region high school girls' 1500 m record of 4:17.64, running a new record of 4:16.76 to win the Chugoku Region High School Championships 1500 m final on June 16. In winning she secured her place at next month's National High School Championships in Sapporo. On the morning of the 16th Drury took 4th in her 1500 m qualifying heat in 4:36.60. In the final she sat in 3rd through most of the race. With one lap to go she moved into 2nd, and with 200 m to go dropped a sudden kick that gave her a margin of victory of almost 4 seconds. Post-race she commented, "We went out on a good pace in the first 400 m and I got into a good rhythm for the rest of the race. My body felt light and I was feeling good. People cheering for me helped too." In January this year Drury ran the National Women's Ekiden as a 3rd-year in junior high school. Her 9:02 course record for her 3.0 km stage drew attention nationally and internatio

JAAF Announces Team of 58 for September's Hangzhou Asian Games

The JAAF has announced a team of 58 for September's rescheduled  Hangzhou Asian Games , something on a par with the Commonwealth Games but with a bigger share of the world's population. 22 women and 36 men will stretch out a long season spanning over two months from the Bangkok Asian Championships to the Budapest World Championships to Hangzhou in quest of points for next year's Paris Olympics. Women 100 m Arisa Kimishima - 11.36 200 m Arisa Kimishima - 23.17 800 m Ayano Shiomi - 2:02.57 1500 m Yume Goto - 4:09.41 5000 m Ririka Hironaka - 14:52.84 Yuma Yamamoto - 15:16.71 10000 m   Ririka Hironaka - 30:39.71 Haruka Kokai - 32:01.83 100 mH   Masumi Aoki  - 12.86 Yumi Tanaka - 12.89 400 mH   Ami Yamamoto - 56.06 Pole Vault Misaki Morota - 4.41 m Long Jump   Sumire Hata - 6.75 m Triple Jump   Mariko Morimoto - 14.16 m Javelin Throw Sae Takemoto - 62.39 m Marina Saito - 62.37 m 20 kmRW Nanako Fujii - 1:28:58 Yukiko Umeno - 1:33:38 35 kmRW Maika Yagi - 2:55:55 Masumi Fuchise

National University Men's Ekiden Kanto Region Qualifier Preview and Streaming

  November's National University Men's Ekiden is the second of the Big Three University Ekidens that make up the peak of the year for Japanese collegiate men. The top eight teams auto-qualify for the following year, and every year it's a given that they're all going to be from the Tokyo-centric Kanto Region. Another 17 schools have to run regional qualifiers to make it back, and of those another seven come from Kanto. The Kanto Region Qualifier happens Saturday at 17:15 Japan time, four heats of 10000 m on the track with two runners from each of the twenty schools in each heat. Teams are scored on the combined times of all eight runners, with the seven fastest total teams going on to Nationals in November. On paper Chuo Gakuin University and Kanagawa University are the favorites with seven entrants each with bests under 29 minutes, in CGU's case led by sub-28 3rd-year Reishi Yoshida . Tokai University , Daito Bunka University and Josai University are next with

Japan Announces Team of 78 for July's Bangkok Asian Championships

The JAAF has announced a team of 78 for the Bangkok Asian Championships July 12-16 in Thailand, perfect parity with 39 women and 39 men. Out of the Japanese athletes to have already cleared the Budapest World Championships qualifying standard and be named to Japan's team for Worlds, only Shunya Takayama is scheduled to compete in Bangkok in the 110 m hurdles. 34 of the Asian Championships are currently in the quota for their event for Budapest. Another half dozen including Arisa Kimishima , Maki Saito , and Hikaru Ikehata are on the cusp of making the quota. For that half of the team, the chance to score area championships placing points for world rankings make the Asian Championships critical to their chances of representing Japan in Budapest. A bit surprisingly, no men's relay teams, one of Japan's areas of strength in recent history, are entered. Athletes in bold are currently in the Budapest World Championships quota for their listed event. Athletes in bold and un

Margaret Akidor Leads 306th Nittai Time Trials Results With 2nd-Best 5000 m of Career

Returning to the track where she set the 3000 m Japanese all-comers' record of 8:32.53 and her 5000 m best of 14:44.83 last November, Margaret Akidor (Comodi Iida) led the results at the 306th Nittai University Time Trials with the 2nd-fastest 5000 m of her career. For whatever reason the meet's format was reversed from its usual setup, with men's 5000 m heats happening Saturday and everything else Sunday. In the women's 5000 m A-heat Akidor ran 14:48.91 for the win, almost 9 seconds up on Teresiah Muthoni (Daiso) who ran 14:57.56 for 2nd. Eva Cherono (Toto) just missed going sub-15 too, 3rd in 15:00.03. Hikaru Kitagawa (Osaka Geijutsu Univ.) was the fastest Japanese woman in the race, 5th in 15:55.79. The women's 3000 m saw a Japanese woman take the top spot, with Asuka Ishimatsu (Meijo Univ.) 1st in 9:14.07. Ayu Henmi (Toyota Jidoshokki) won the women's 1500 m A-heat in 4:22.52 and Nanako Izumi (Chiba Univ.) the 800 m A-heat in 2:15.83. The top six

'2023 Trail World Championships 80k Results: Victories All Around for France' Honoka Akiyama had the best performance by a Japanese athlete at the 2023 World Mountain and Trail Running Championships, running as high as 5th in the women's 80 km long race, dropping to 13th near halfway, then coming back to take 9th in 12:01:23. Ignoring early front-running by his teammates, Koken Ogasawara started around 50th and moved up progressively through the field to finish as the top Japanese man in 30th in 11:04:57. Complete results .

Miura Breaks Own 3000 mSC NR in Paris Men's 3000 mSC NR holder Ryuji Miura (Juntendo Univ.) shaved 0.01 off his record at the Paris Diamond League meet, running a new NR of 8:09.91 for 2nd behind WR breaker Lamecha Girma of Ethiopia. NR holder Haruka Kitaguchi (JAL) won the women's javelin throw by over 2.5 m with a throw of 65.09. Complete results .

'2023 Trail World Championships 40k Short Trail Results: France’s Geoffray Wins Late, Norway’s Angermund Repeats' Ruy Ueda  was the top Japanese finisher in the men's race, fading from 7th to 15th over the third quarter of the race but rallying to end up 12th in 4:34:45. Suzuha Kusuda was the only Japanese woman in the race, holding steady around 60th the entire way and finishing 62nd in 6:11:30. Complete results here .

Final Day Gold Medal Rush Helps Japan Dominate Medal Table at U20 Asian Championships

  The final day of the Yecheon U20 Asian Championships was held on June 7. Leading the day's action, Junpei Maseda (Waseda Univ.) won the men's 1500 m in 3:50.15. Maseda, who ran the First Stage at this year's Hakone Ekiden for Waseda, led aggressively from the start. Iraq's M. Al-Khazali made a late challenge, but Maseda held him off to take gold. In the women's 100 mH final, a day after taking silver in the heptathlon Miki Hayashi (Chukyo H.S.) pulled away in the middle phase of the race to win gold in 13.64 -0.4 m/s. Jennifer Saita (Josai H.S.) was the only athlete in the women's 200 m final to break 24 seconds, taking gold in 23.99 -0.1 m/s. Men's 3000 m gold medalist Sonata Nagashima (Asahi Kasei) pulled off the double in the 5000 m, winning again in 14:23.91. In other events, Sota Haraguchi (Juntendo Univ.) cleared a PB 2.18 m for silver in the men's high jump. Haruya Suzaki (Keio Univ.) was 5th at 2.06 m. In the women's 1500 m, 5000 m

JAAF Announces Time Standards for Third Spot on Paris Olympic Team

On June 7 the JAAF announced the time standards for the MGC Final Challenge , the battle to pick up the third spot on the men's and women's marathon teams for the Paris Olympics. To earn the third spot on the team men will have to run 2:05:50 and women 2:21:41 at one of the major domestic Japanese marathons in the winter 2023-24 season. The other two places on the Olympic team will be given to the top two men and women at the Oct. 15 MGC Race, with the 3rd-placer there given a provisional spot. From December, 2023 through March, 2024 if any athletes run the MGC Final Challenge standard at one of the three races named for men or two for women, the athlete running the furthest under the standard will earn the third spot. If nobody breaks the standard, the 3rd-placer at the MGC Race will be finalized as the third Olympic team member. source article: translated by Brett Larner

Mizumoto and 4x100 m Relay Team Add to Japan's Gold Medal Haul at U20 Asian Championships

  The third day of the Yecheon U20 Asian Championships happened Tuesday in South Korea. In the men's 4x100 m relay Japan took the gold medal in 39.76. Scheduled to run in the 200 m, team members Shunya Kimura (Nihon Univ.) and Futo Takasu (Meiji Univ.) were forced to withdraw right before the start of the championships due to injury. This radically changed the team lineup from its original order. 100 m gold and bronze medalists Haruki Narushima (Toyo Univ.) and Kaito Kuroki (Higashi Fukuoka H.S.) ran 1-2 as planned, building a margin of error over the first half of the race. Kuroki handed off to Yuta Sekiguchi (Waseda Univ.), who showed excellent skills running the curve on third. Pole vaulter Eito Watanabe (Tsukuba Univ.), 4th in Sunday's pole vault final, was drafted in to handle anchor duties, and even though other teams made up ground on him he managed to hang on to the lead and bring Japan home in 1st. It was the second-straight U20 Asian Championships 4x100 m gold

Miyao's Triple Jump U20 NR Leads Japanese Quintet of Gold on U20 Asian Championships Day 2

The second day of U20 Asian Championships took place June 5 in Yecheon, South Korea. In the men's triple jump, Minato Miyao (Toyo Univ.) set a new U20 NR of 16.38 m to win the gold medal. The previous U20 record of 16.35 m had stood for 20 years. Miyao began his first year at Toyo in April after graduating from Kyoto's Rakunan H.S. Last summer he took 2nd at the Tokushima National High School Championships, then followed up in November with a 16.13 m high school NR jump at the Kyoto Private Schools Championships. Despite the changes to his lifestyle that came with going to college, at April's Oda Memorial Meet Miyao placed 5th overall and 3rd among Japanese men with a jump of 15.76 m +0.7 m/s. At May's Kanto Regionals he won at 16.12 m +2.8 m/s. At the U20 Asian Championships, Miyao's first jump was 16.08 m into a 2.7 m/s headwind. He duplicated that distance on his fourth attempt and was in the top position at the end of the fifth round. A Chinese athlete moved

Nagashima Wins 3000 m Gold, Yonezawa and Matsumoto Go 1-2 in 5000 m on Opening Day of Asian Juniors

The U20 Asian Championships started June 4 in Yecheon, South Korea with competition in eight events. In the men's 3000 m, Sonata Nagashima ran 8:19.49 to win the gold medal. With only five athletes in the race, Nagashima took the lead in the first 200 m with a 2:40 first 1000 m. Nobody else could follow that kind of pace, and with a 5:24 split at 2000 m his lead only grew as he coasted in to his first international title. Nagashima joined the Asahi Kasei corporate team in April after graduating from Nishiwaki Kogyo H.S. Active in track and field since junior high school, he was a podium placer at the National High School Ekiden and won the opening stages at both last December's National High School Ekiden and January's National Men's Ekiden. In the women's 5000 m, Nanaka Yonezawa of national champion Meijo University took the gold medal in 16:37.37, with Akari Matsumoto of the Sekisui Kagaku corporate team winning silver in 16:42.22. Nozomi Sakurai (Semi H.

Karanja and Ichiyama Win Sendai International Half Marathon

Running through the lush green of the city, 8000 people ran the June 4 Sendai International Half Marathon , double the number in last year's corona-limited comeback edition. In the men's race, a trio of international athletes, Joseph Karanja , Charles Kamau and Benard Kimeli , led early and battled over the last 5 km. Nearing the track for the finish, Karanja broke free to win in 1:01:49. It was his first victory in Sendai. Running the women's race for the first time, Tokyo Olympics marathon 8th-placer Mao Ichiyama won in 1:11:38. Masayuki Higuchi and Tsubasa Kina won the men's and women's wheelchair divisions. Sendai International Half Marathon Sendai, Miyagi, 4 June 2023 complete results Women 1. Mao Ichiyama - 1:11:38 2. Sakiho Tsutsui - 1:12:04 3. Joan Kipkemoi - 1:12:33 4. Chiharu Ikeda - 1:12:53 5. Hikari Onishi - 1:13:10 6. Nanami Aoki - 1:13:52 7. Rinka Hida - 1:14:21 8. Yumeno Yamazaki - 1:14:28 9. Eriko Otsuka - 1:15:01 10. Shihoka Kato - 1:15:07 Men 1

Izumiya Breaks 110 m Hurdles NR - National Track and Field Championships Day 4 Highlights

The 107th National Track and Field Championships and 39th U20 National Championships wrapped up Sunday in Osaka with a new national record and a meet record on the books. Running into a -0.9 m/s headwind, Shunsuke Izumiya (Sumitomo Denko) pushed the second half of the men's 100 mH final to shave 0.2 off the NR with a 13.04 for the win. Izumiya was already at #2 in the world this season with his previous SB of 13.07, but his new NR inched him closer to current world leader Grant Holloway 's 13.01. Nine years after setting the Japanese men's NR, Sho Kawamoto (Suzuki) unexpectedly turned in a 1:46.18 MR to win the 800 m. Kawamoto was pushed over the last 200 m by Junya Matsumoto (FAJ), whose 1:46.52 PB for 2nd was enough to move him up to all-time Japanese #10. The absence of NR holder Ryota Yamagata and relay team regulars Yoshihide Kiryu , Shuhei Tada and Aska Cambridge from Nationals has raised a lot questions about the Japanese men's 4x100 relay team's chanc