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16-yr-Old Rin Kubo Runs U18 NR to Win Women's 800 m - Japanese Olympic Trials Day Four


Off and on rain throughout the day, sometimes heavy, impacted a lot of events on the last day of Japan's National Track and Field Championships, U20 National Championships, and Olympic trials, but at least 6 of the 12 finals saw people seal up places at the Paris Olympics, and one saw a new youth record by its winner. Complete results here.

Men's 100 m Final -0.2 m/s

Fastest in the semifinals, Ryuichiro Sakai did it again in the final to add the 2024 national title to his 2023 win in 10.13 (-0.2). Akihiro Higashida and Hiroki Yanagita went a close 2-3 in 10.14, both of them pretty much guaranteeing that they'll be on the Paris team with Abdul Hakim Sani Brown, who sat Nationals out after running the Olympic standard earlier this season. Former NR holder Yoshihide Kiryu took 5th in 10.20 and will only have a shot at being in Paris as a relay alternate.

1. Ryuichiro Sakai (Osaka Gas) - 10.13
2. Akihiro Higashida (Sekisho) - 10.14
3. Hiroki Yanagita (Toyo Univ.) - 10.14
4. Bruno Dede (Seiko) - 10.25
5. Yoshihide Kiryu (Nihon Seimei) - 10.26
6. Ryo Wada (Miki House) - 10.26
7. Ryota Suzuki (Suzuki) - 10.29
8. Shoma Yamamoto (Hiroshima Univ.) - 10.31

Men's 400 m Final

The pre-championships favorite Kentaro Sato didn't run the final, which is a bit of a worry, but Yuki Joseph Nakajima overcame the rain to win another national title in 45.51 with Fuga Sato next in 45.61. That added a few points to Nakajima's rankings score without improving his position, 43rd of 48th in the Paris quota. Fuga Sato is already qualified, and 2nd means he will be added to the Paris team. But the big concern will be whether Kentaro Sato is ready to go a month from now.

1. Yuki Joseph Nakajima (Fujitsu) - 45.51
2. Fuga Sato (Mizuno) - 45.61
3. Takuho Yoshizu (GK Line) - 45.96
4. Kaito Kawabata (Chukyo Club) - 46.24
5. Masato Mori (Sunbelx) - 46.52
6. Daichi Inoue (Omatsu Unyo) - 46.84
7. Mizuki Obuchi (Torihei AC) - 47.41
DNS - Kentaro Sato (Fujitsu)

Women's 100 mH Final -0.2 m/s

The three favorites Mako Fukube, Yumi Tanaka and Asuka Terada delivered in the final even though it came at some of the peak rain, Fukube winning in 12.86 (-0.2) after hitting the Paris standard in the semifinals, Tanaka next in 12.89 and Terada 3rd in 12.91. Fukube getting the standard pushed Tanaka down from 39th to 40th of 40 in the Olympic quota, but Tanaka's performance adds 8 points to her score and may keep her hopes alive. Terada came up short, though, and will miss the team unless there are multiple cancelations from other countries.

1. Mako Fukube (NKK) - 12.86
2. Yumi Tanaka (Fujitsu) - 12.89
3. Asuka Terada (Japan Create) - 12.91
4. Yuki Omatsu (CDL) - 13.15
5. Chisato Kiyoyama (Ichigo) - 13.17
6. Hitomi Shimura (Rida Japan) - 13.21
7. Hitomi Nakajima (Hasegawa) - 13.23
8. Manaka Shibata (Edion) - 13.29

Men's 110 mH Final +0.2 m/s

Following his 13.14 (-1.0) season best in the semifinals, Rachid Muratake ran the 2nd-fastest time of his career, 13.07 (+0.2) to win the national title and a place in Paris in the final. Shunya Takayama was next in 13.31 and Taiga Yokochi 3rd in 13.39. One of the 3 Japanese with the standard, Shusei Nomoto was only 5th in 13.43, setting up a tough team selection process for the two spots after Muratake. Takayama is safely inside the quota, while Yokochi's time and place may have just gotten him into the top 40 in the quota. Nomoto and Shunsuke Izumiya, who skipped Nationals, both have the standard. If Yokochi doesn't survive the final rankings update this week then it gets easier, but not easy.

1. Rachid Muratake (JAL) - 13.07
2. Shunya Takayama (Zenrin) - 13.31
3. Taiga Yokochi (Team SSP) - 13.39
4. Tatsuki Abe (Juntendo Univ.) - 13.41
5. Shusei Nomoto (Ehime T&F Assoc.) - 13.43
6. Shuhei Ishikawa (Fujitsu) - 13.47
7. Ryota Fujii (Mie Sports Assoc.) - 13.48
8. Ryota Machi (Niigata Albirex RC) - 13.55

Men's High Jump Final

The men were mostly jumping in heavy rain, but while it meant the heights people cleared were mostly one level lower than they would have done in better weather it affected everyone equally and there weren't many surprises. Ryoichi Akamatsu cleared 2.25 m on his first attempt and took the win. Takashi Eto cleared it on his second try and was 2nd. Tomohiro Shinno made it over 2.20 m on his first attempt and was 3rd. Naoto Hasegawa took 3 tries to get over 2.25 m but made it and placed 4th. #3-ranked Japanese man Yuto Seko was the only one of the favorites to have an off day, clearing only 2.15 m and placing 7th.

With that Akamatsu and Shinno are sure to be added to the Paris team. Eto came just short of scoring enough points to pass Seko in the rankings and will not make the team. But Hasegawa's 2.20 m for 4th outscored Seko in the rankings by 1 point, moving the Budapest World Championships team member Hasegawa up to 3rd Japanese and 33rd. With 32 places available in the Paris Olympics high jump he'll have to sweat it out this week to see if anyone ahead of him cancels.

1. Ryoichi Akamatsu (Seibu Prince) - 2.25 m
2. Takashi Eto (KDL) - 2.25 m
3. Tomohiro Shinno (Kyudenko) - 2.20 m
4. Naoto Hasegawa (Niigata Albirex RC) - 2.20 m
5. Sota Haraguchi (Juntendo Univ.) - 2.15 m
5. Sho Katsuta (Mie Kyoin) - 2.15 m
7. Tsuguru Miyata (Nihon Univ.) - 2.15 m
7. Yuto Seko (FAAS) - 2.15 m
7. Shun Yamanaka (Kyoto Univ.) - 2.15 m
10. So Shibuya (Team Saru Tamashi) - 2.10 m

Women's Long Jump Final

NR holder and world #6-ranked Sumire Hata was nowhere near her best but still had an easy win, 20 cm ahead of 2nd placer Maya Takeuchi and confirming her place in Paris with a 6.56 m (+1.4) jump. 6.36 (+0.5) was a PB for Takeuchi, who beat Miu Kimura for 2nd by just 1 cm.

1. Sumire Hata (Sumitomo Denko) - 6.56 m (+1.4)
2. Maya Takeuchi (Mizuno) - 6.36 m (+0.5) - PB
3. Miu Kimura (Shikoku Univ.) - 6.35 m (+0.3)
4. Ion Kondo (Arayama Hawkeye) - 6.16 m (+1.0)
5. Nagisa Yamamoto (Hasegawa) - 6.07 m (+0.6)
6. Akira Kobayashi (Smiley) - 6.07 m (-0.3)
7. Yuka Nakao (Fukuoka Univ.) - 6.02 m (-0.2)
8. Riko Shirato (Nihon Univ.) - 6.01 m (+0.4)
9. Mirei Yoshioka (Tsukuba TP) - 6.00 m (+0.9)
10. Kokoro Atsuta (Okuyama T&F Assoc.)- 5.98 m (+0.8)

Women's 200 m Final +0.8 m/s

The final was a great back-and-forth between 2023 champ Arisa Kimishima and top-ranked Remi Tsuruta. Kimishima was out fast, but as the only Japanese woman in range of making the Paris quota Tsuruta gave the 23.07 PB she needed in order to have a chance a serious go and overtook Kimishima. But in the last 50 m Kimishima fought back, taking the win in a PB 23.16 (+0.8) with Tsuruta 2nd in 23.20, the 2nd-best wind-legal time of her career and only 0.03 off her best. Kimishima's win gave her the 100-200 double, but Tsuruta didn't manage to achieve what she needed for Paris.

1. Arisa Kimishima (DKS) - 23.16 - PB
2. Remi Tsuruta (Minami Kyushu Family Mart) - 23.20
3. Ami Takahashi (Tsukuba Univ.) - 23.79
4. Shuri Aono (ND Software) - 23.88
5. Midori Mikase (Sumitomo Denko) - 23.92 - PB
6. Aiko Iki (Osaka Gas) - 24.09
7. Aoi Sato (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 24.29
8. Nanako Matsumoto (Toho Ginko) - 29.08

Women's 800 m Final

See the video at the top of the article. 16-year-old Rin Kubo lived up to the hype, front-running against last year's national champ Airi Ikezaki and sub-2:03 women Ayano Shiomi, Ayaka Kawata and Nozomi Tanaka and outrunning them all to take the win in 2:03:13. That was a PB by almost half a second and a new U18 NR. More to come from this one.

1. Rin Kubo (Higashi Osaka Keiai H.S.) - 2:03.13 - U18 NR
2. Ran Urabe (Sekisui Kagaku) - 2:04.26
3. Ai Watanabe (Sonoda Gakuen Joshi Univ.) - 2:04.33
4. Ayano Shiomi (Iwatani Sangyo) - 2:04.70
5. Airi Ikezaki (Daiso) - 2:04.80
6. Ayaka Kawata (Niconiconori) - 2:05.06
7. Nozomi Tanaka (New Balance) - 2:05.14
8. Yuki Hirota (Niigata Albirex RC) - 2:06.91

Men's 800 m Final

As with Kubo in the women's race, 17-year-old Ko Ochiai fearlessly frontran against NR holder Sho Kawamoto and the rest of the field in pursuit of the Paris Olympics standard after having missed Kawamoto's 1:45.75 NR by only 0.07 in the semifinal. But a slower first lap, 53 vs. his 52 in his semi, ended Ochiai's hopes of going to Paris as the first Japanese man under 1:45. In the end he held that pace to win in 1:46.56 with an even bigger margin of victory than in the semifinals, 1.10 over Kawamoto. At the finish Ochiai went to his knees and pounded the track in frustration, then covered his face with both hands in disappointment. But even more than Kubo, there looked to be a lot more to come from this athlete still in high school.

1. Ko Ochiai (Shiga Gakuen H.S.) - 1:46.56
2. Sho Kawamoto (Suzuki) - 1:47.66
3. Yugo Shikata (Takatsuka T&F Assoc.) - 1:47.94
4. Yukichi Ishii (Penn State) - 1:47.99
5. Sota Okamura (Kanoya Taiiku Univ.) - 1:48.02 - PB
6. Shuri Sato (Kanoya Taiiku Univ.) - 1:48.23
7. Ryuto Hayakawa (Smiley) - 1:48.45
8. Hinata Maeda (Kantaiheiyo Univ.) - 1:48.70

Women's 400 mH Final

Mostly off her form this season, 2023 national champion Ami Yamamoto broke 57 for the first time this year with a 56.60 to win the final. Top-ranked Eri Utsunomiya faded to finish last in 59.01, leaving Satsuki Umehara to outrun Moe Matsuoka for 2nd in 57.38 after a breakthrough run from Matsuoka in the semifinals.

1. Ami Yamamoto (Ritsumeikan Univ.) - 56.60
2. Satsuki Umehara (Sumitomo Denko) - 57.38
3. Moe Matsuoka (Chuo Univ.) - 57.61
4. Meri Masuko (Chuo Univ.) - 58.07
5. Akane Minamisawa (Matsumoto Doken) - 58.26
6. Hikari Okubo (Fun and Run) - 58.65
7. Mio Tsujii (Osaka Ikuei Univ.) - 58.73
8. Eri Utsunomiya (Hasegawa) - 59.01

Women's Shot Put Final

Discus throw national champion Nanaka Kori, a Niigata local, picked up a second title in the shot put where she was also the defending champ. Kori's 15.67 m throw on her 3rd attempt was enough to overcome Haruka Osako's 15.45 m PB on her 2nd attempt and settled the top 2. Fumika Ono was 3rd with a 5th-round 15.28 m throw.

1. Nanaka Kori (Niigata Albirex RC) - 15.67 m
2. Haruka Osako (Somay-Q) - 15.45 m - PB
3. Fumika Ono (Tsukuba Univ.) - 15.28 m
4. Honoka Oyama (Imamura Byoin) - 14.84 m
5. Ami Tanaka (Kyushu Kyoritsu Univ.) - 14.46 m
6. Akari Imanishi (Kyushu Kyoritsu Univ.) - 14.30 m
7. Ryoka Hinatsu (Fukuoka Univ.) - 14.12 m
8. Chiharu Saka (Osaka Namisho H.S.) - 14.11 m
9. Sena Kikuchi (Kumagoro) - 14.07 m
10. Kotomi Okuyama (Okayama Shoka Univ.) - 14.03 m

Men's Shot Put Final

On his 2nd attempt last year's winner Hitoshi Okumura threw a season best 18.53 m to win the men's shot put again. Collegiate star Jason Atuobeng also delivered a season best on his final throw but came 18 cm short of Okumura at 18.35 m, the only other man over 18 m.

1. Hitoshi Okumura (Senko) - 18.53 m
2. Jason Atuobeng (Fukuoka Univ.) - 18.35 m
3. Daichi Morishita (Kagotani) - 17.61 m
4. Hikaru Murakami (Nittai Univ.) - 17.36 m
5. Shinichi Yukinaga (Shikoku Univ. AC) - 17.29 m
6. Akito Yamada (Hosei Univ.) - 17.26 m
7. Hayate Inafuku (Nohhi) - 16.96 m
8. Hyogo Watanabe (Niigata Iryo Fukushi Univ.) - 16.93 m
9. Masahira Sato (Niigata Albirex RC) - 16.59 m
10. Takuto Sano (Biwako Seikei AC) - 16.39 m

© 2024 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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