Skip to main content

Outdoor Track Season Kicks Off at Kanaguri Memorial

by Brett Larner

With the start of the fiscal and academic year on April 1 Japan's outdoor track season wasted no time getting started at Saturday's Kanaguri Memorial Meet in Kumamoto.  With five heats of senior men's 5000 m on the menu 1500 m junior world record holder Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) led the way, winning the A-heat in 13:24.42.  Newcomer Abayneh Degu (Team Yasukawa Denki) wasn't far off that in the B-heat, running a 30-second PB of 13:25.55 for the win.

Hiroki Matsueda (Team Fujitsu) led the Japanese results, clearing 13:30 for the first time with a 13:28.61 for 3rd in the Kwemoi-led A-heat.  Just 34 days after his 1:01:55-first-half 2:09:27 marathon debut, Yuta Shitara (Team Honda) was only 0.12 seconds off his PB in 13:34.80 for 8th in the same heat. In the B-heat, Matsueda's teammate Ken Yokote (Team Fujitsu) ran a 10-second PB of 13:31.35 for top Japanese honors at 5th overall.  Behind him, Kazuya Shiojiri (Juntendo Univ.), a Rio Olympian in the 3000 m steeplechase, took 22 seconds off his best, running 13:33.14 for 7th.  The three slower heats all featured Japanese winners, all three breaking 14:00.

Kenyans delivered solid times to win both of the main women's races.  In the 5000 m A-heat, Rosemary Wanjiru (Team Starts) ran a 2-second PB of 15:13.39 to win by almost 25 seconds over Mariam Waithera (Team Kyudenko).  Ann Karindi (Team Toyota Jidoshokki) took the 1500 m A-heat in 4:12.39 by 7 seconds over Tomoka Kimura (Team Universal Entertainment.  Yumika Katayama (Ritsumeikan Uji H.S.) won the high school girls' 3000 m A-heat in 9:20.42.

2017 Kanaguri Memorial Meet
Kumamoto Sports Park Field, Kumamoto, 4/1/17
click here for complete results

Men's 5000 m Heat 5
1. Ronald Kwemoi (Kenya/Komori Corp.) - 13:24.42
2. Alexander Mutiso (Kenya/ND Software) - 13:28.59
3. Hiroki Matsueda (Fujitsu) - 13:28.61 - PB
4. John Maina (Kenya/Fujitsu) - 13:30.99
5. Rodgers Chumo Kwemoi (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 13:32.01
6. Shuho Dairokuno (Asahi Kasei) - 13:32.56
7. Cyrus Kingori (Kenya/SGH Group) - 13:32.64 - PB
8. Yuta Shitara (Honda) - 13:34.80
9. Tetsuya Yoroizaka (Asahi Kasei) - 13:38.72
10. Mamiyo Nigusse (Ethiopia/Yasukawa Denki) - 13:43.98

Men's 5000 m Heat 4
1. Abayneh Degu (Ethiopia/Yasukawa Denki) - 13:25.55 - PB
2. Daniel Kipkemoi (Kenya/Nishitetsu) - 13:26.38 - PB
3. Joel Mwaura (Kenya/Kurosaki Harima) - 13:27.52 - PB
4. Edward Waweru (Kenya/NTN) - 13:31.30
5. Ken Yokote (Fujitsu) - 13:31.35 - PB
6. John Kariuki (Kenya/Sekino Kosan) - 13:32.87 - PB
7. Kazuya Shiojiri (Juntendo Univ.) - 13:33.14 - PB
8. Charles Ndirangu (Kenya/JFE Steel) - 13:33.85
9. Patrick Muendo Mwaka (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 13:43.48
10. Samuel Mwangi (Kenya/Konica Minolta) - 13:43.49

Men's 5000 m Heat 3
1. Yuma Higashi (Kyudenko) - 13:54.90
2. Ryunosuke Omori (Toyo Univ.) - 13:59.28
3. Daichi Takeuchi (Chuo Univ.) - 14:01.10

Men's 5000 m Heat 2
1. Noriyasu Ikeda (Press Kogyo) - 13:59.34 - PB
2. Shohei Morikawa (Sanyo Tokushu Seiko) - 14:01.10
3. Shinji Yoshimoto (Kurosaki Harima) - 14:01.66

Men's 5000 m Heat 1
1. Taisei Hashizume (Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 13:58.00 - PB
2. Yohei Koyama (NTN) - 13:59.37
3. Naoya Takahashi (Yasukawa Denki) - 14:00.29

Men's 1500 m Heat 2
1. Masaki Toda (Nissin Shokuhin) - 3:46.69
2. Ryoji Tatezawa (Tokai Univ.) - 3:47.49
3. Mitsutaka Tomita (Nishitetsu) - 3:47.89

Women's 5000 m Heat 2
1. Rosemary Wanjiru (Kenya/Starts) - 15:13.39 - PB
2. Mariam Waithera (Kenya/Kyudenko) - 15:37.66
3. Yuka Miyazaki (Kyudenko) - 15:50.22
4. Ryo Koido (Hitachi) - 15:52.73
5. Susan Wairimu (Denso) - 15:55.76

High School Girls 3000 m Heat 4
1. Yumika Katayama (Ritsumeikan Uji H.S.) - 9:20.42
2. Mai Misaki (Chikushi Joshi Gakuen H.S.) - 9:22.56
3. Misaki Hayashida (Kitakyushu Municipal H.S.) - 9:22.65
4. Matsuri Harada (Shonan H.S.) - 9:26.40
5. Shiori Yoshizono (Kobayashi H.S.) - 9:28.15

Women's 1500 m Heat 2
1. Ann Karindi (Kenya/Toyota Jidoshokki) - 4:12.36
2. Tomoka Kimura (Universal Entertainment) - 4:19.53
3. Maya Iino (Daiichi Seimei) - 4:20.55

© 2017 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kariuki Cracks Course Record at 30th Anniversary Ageo City Half Marathon

2017 Kanto Regionals 10000 m and half marathon D2 champion Simon Kariuki (Nihon Yakka Univ.)  overcame windy conditions at the 30th edition of the Ageo City Half Marathon to shave one second off the course record, winning in a PB 1:01:25.

Kariuki and 2017 Kanto Regionals D1 5000 m and 10000 m champ Patrick Mathenge Wambui (Nihon Univ.) took it out in the first km, setting up a fascinating duel between Kanto's top two collegiate men on the track.


Led by Hayato Seki, star runner of this year's Izumo Ekiden champ Tokai University in his half marathon debut, the main body of the Japanese pack gradually relinquished the lead to the Kenyan pair, down 50 seconds by 10 km and continuing to drift back from then. Ageo has typically seen its lead Japanese collegiate men running between high-61 and mid-62, but nobody in the field seemed willing to go ahead of Seki and the runner on his shoulder, 2017 World University Games half marathon gold medalist Kei Katanishi (Komazawa Univ.).


Near …

Breaking Down the Best-Ever Japanese Marathon Times By Country

Japanese marathoners these days have the reputation of rarely racing abroad, and of rarely racing well when they do. Back in the day that wasn't true; Japanese marathoners have won all the World Marathon Majors-to-be except New York, and two of the three Japanese men to have run 2:06 and all three women to have run 2:19 did it outside Japan. Whatever the extent to which things did turn inward along the way, the last few years have seen an uptick in Japanese runners going farther afield and running better there than any others before them.

The lists above and below show the fastest times run by Japanese athletes in different countries to 2:20:00 for men and 2:45:00 for women. Japanese men have run sub-2:20 marathons in 37 countries around the world including Japan, with Japanese women having cleared 2:45 in 33 countries including at home. Breaking it down by IAAF label times, more Japanese men have run label standard times abroad, but women have typically performed at a higher label…

Kosimbei, Kwemoi and Shitara Lead Hachioji 10000 m Field

Nestled deep in the misty foothills of the western Tokyo mountains, Hosei University's late November Hachioji Long Distance meet has quietly turned into one of the world's premier track 10000 m, its A-heat never quite dipping under 27 minutes yet but still producing record-setting depth and the two fastest Japanese men's 10000 m in history.
This year's entry list is another monster, with 27:02.59 man Nicholas Kosimbei (Toyota) leading 17 men with recent times under 28 minutes, twelve of them Kenyan, three Japanese and two Ethiopian. Fresh off a 27:22.73 win at last weekend's Nittai University Time Trials, two-time steeplechase junior world champion Jonathan Ndiku (Hitachi Butsuryu) is slated to pace what is scheduled to be a sub-28 race, but with Kosimbei, sub-27:30 men John Maina (Fujitsu) and Rodgers Chumo Kwemoi (Aisan Kogyo) and five others under 27:45 including last year's winnerRonald Kwemoi (Komori Corp.) on the list the front end should go faster. 
Rig…