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Weekend Track and Road Roundup


The Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon aside, a quick roundup of results from this past weekend:

At the Nittai University Time Trials, aka the Nittaidai Challenge Games, Shadrack Kipkemei (Nihon Univ.) led a great men's 10000 m A-heat in 27:20.05, with the top six men all going under 27:28. James Mutuku (Yamanashi Gakuin Univ.) was the only other collegiate runner among them at 3rd in 27:23.09, with 2:06 marathoner Hidekazu Hijikata (Asahi Kasei) the top Japanese finisher at 8th in 28:23.27.

Mutuku's YGU teammate Brian Kipyegon won the 5000 m A-heat in 13:30.88, James Karuri (Aomori Yamada H.S.) next in 13:33.67 and Kaisei Okada (Chuo Univ.) 3rd in 13:48.44. Soya Katayama (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) had the fastest 1500 m with a 3:46.19 to win the A-heat.

In the women's races at Nittai, Tabitha Njeri Kamau (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) was the only one to clear 16 minutes in the 5000 m A-heat, running 15:27.12 for the win. Lucy Nduta (Aomori Yamada H.S.) was likewise the only one under 9 minutes in the 3000 m A-heat at 8:57.59, Runa Shoji (Kantaiheiyo Univ.) taking the 1500 m A-heat in 4:19.30 by 0.12 over Yuma Yamamoto (Sekisui Kagaku). Yamamoto was also 2nd behind Nduta in the 3000 m, running 9:08.38.

Like last year, heavy rain hit Hiroshima's Oda Memorial Meet on Monday, but there were still a lot of good performances. Shunsuke Yoshii (Chuo Univ.) led the top six under 13:30 in the men's 5000 m A-heat in 13:24.06, with Taishi Ito (Waseda Univ.) running in the 13:20s for the first time at 13:28.67 for 5th.

Just-graduated 3000 mSC NR holder Ryuji Miura (Subaru) and perpetual rival Philemon Kiplagat (Aisan Kogyo) both went under Kiplagat's meet record from 2021, Miura winning in 8:22.07 and Kiplagat 2nd in 8:23.35. On the way up this season, Yutaro Niinae (Aisan Kogyo) was 3rd in 8:28.54, his first time under 8:30. Three men broke the MR in the 1500 m, all under 3:40, led by Abraham Guem (Ami AC) in 3:39.17. Ryoji Tatezawa (DeNA) was 2nd in 3:39.55 and Masato Saiki (Fujisan no Meisui) 3rd in 3:39.88.

Agnes Mwikali (Kyocera) was less than a second off the MR in the women's 5000 m, winning by over 20 seconds in 15:04.71. Wakana Kabasawa (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) was 2nd in 15:25.30, with Ireland's Jodie McCann 4th in a PB 15:30.20. Tomoka Kimura (Sekisui Kagaku) shaved 0.19 off the women's 1500 m MR dating way back to 1994, winning 4:10.75 over Rose Wangui (Sera H.S.), 2nd in 4:12.85. Overseas, NR holder Nozomi Tanaka (New Balance) was slightly faster at the Penn Relays, running 4:08.32 for 3rd.

Also overseas, a massive crew of nine Adidas-sponsored Japanese men ran the 5 km at the adizero Road to Records in Germany, where they duly filled up the back half of the field, jogging in a pack and finishing 15th through 22nd and 24th of 24. Kosei Atomura (Koku Gakuin Univ.) was the only one to run relatively seriously, clocking 14:00 for 15th. The 16th through 21st-placers all ran between 14:30 and 14:38, 14:38 being the time run by women's winner Medina Eisa.

© 2024 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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  The biggest domestic meet of the weekend was the four-day Kanto Region Track and Field Championships , but there were other good meets happening across the country. At the Kinami Memorial Meet in Osaka, Kazuto Iizawa (Sumitomo Denko) had a near-miss on the Japanese NR, running a meet record 3:35.77 for the win to come in at all-time JPN #2. 2nd through 4th-placers Abraham Guem (South Sudan), Felix Muthiani (Kenya) and Dezhu Liu (China) were all under the old MR and under 3:38, and the top 10 all went under 3:40. All told it was one of the best non-international championship men's 1500 m ever on Japanese soil. The women's 3000 mSC also saw a new MR from Shuangshuang Xu (China) in 9:47.45, with 2nd through 4th-placers Miu Saito (Nittai Univ.), Georgia Winkcup (Australia) and Manami Nishiyama (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo) all breaking 10 minutes. At part one of the Chugoku Corporate Championships in Hiroshima, Rebecca Mwangi (Daiso) had an easy win in the women's 5000 m