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Endo Breaks 3000 m Junior National Record in Kitami

Already the U18 national record holder for 3000 m, 18-year-old Hyuga Endo (Sumitomo Denko) stepped up with an U20 record in the men's 3000 m at the third meet in the Hokuren Distance Challenge series Sunday in Kitami, Hokkaido.

The men's and women's 3000 m races on the program as a step toward Wednesday's fourth and final HDC meet in Abashiri where people will be shooting for last-minute London World Championships qualifying standards. With pacer Evans Keitany (Toyota Boshoku) targeting 7:55 the men's race came down to a sprint finish between Tetsuya Yoroizaka (Asahi Kasei), Takashi Ichida (Asahi Kasei) and Chiharu Nakagawa (Toenec) over the last lap. Yoroizaka dropped Ichida in the home straight to win in 7:52.70, the fastest-ever 3000 m time by a Japanese man on Japanese soil and one that made him all-time #10 in the Japanese record books. Closing fast, Endo overtook Nakagawa and came up just short of catching Ichida, who took 2nd in 7:54.11. Endo was 3rd in 7:54.79, taking almost three seconds off the U20 record set back in 2004 by Athens Olympian Ryuji Ono.

The women's race very nearly saw a straight up national record. A trio of pacers took the race out on track for 8:45, putting Kayoko Fukushi's national record of 8:44.40 in range. Riko Matsuzaki (Sekisui Kagaku), Mao Ichiyama (Wacoal) and Misaki Onishi (Sekisui Kagaku) looked up for the challenge, but over the last 1000 m each slipped off the pace in turn. Onishi was the first to go, ending up 3rd in a PB of 9:00.32. Ichiyama and Matsuzaki pushed on before Ichiyama dropped, taking 2nd in 8:53.54 to become all-time Japanese #6. With one lap to go it was clear that Matsuzaki was too far off pace to take Fukushi's mark down, but keeping it together with a fast kick she became just the second Japanese woman to break 8:50 as she won in 8:49.61.

Another near-miss on a national record came in the women's 5000 m A-heat. Having landed at all-time South Korean #3 for 5000 m at last week's Hokuren Distance Challenge Shibestu meet with a 15:49.17, Do Yeon Kim (K Water) was out on pace for the 15:38.60 national record behind early leader Azusa Sumi (Universal Entertainment) with teammate Da Eun Jeong (K Water) pulling the chase pack. Sumi was out at sub-15:30 pace, but as she slowed in the second half of the race Kim caught up to her, the pair running together all the way to the end. With a lap to go it was going to be very close, and despite a sprint battle with Sumi Kim came up just short. Sumi took the win in 15:38.95, Kim an agonizing 0.52 off the Korean record in 15:39.12 for 2nd. Jeong pulled away from the chase pack for 3rd in a 17-second PB of 15:46.94 to move up to all-time Korean #4.

Another noteworthy race came in the men's 800 m A-heat. London Olympics 1500 m silver medalist Leo Manzano (U.S.A.) found himself up against a mostly collegiate field in a race that came down to a crowded last 100 m. Tatsuya Nishikubo (Waseda Univ.) got the better of Manzano with a PB of 1:48.34 for the win. Manzano was next in 1:48.45, with Shunichi Takagi (Kanoya Taiiku Univ.) 3rd in a PB 1:48.56.

2017 Hokuren Distance Challenge Kitami Meet

Kitami, Hokkaido, 7/9/17
click here for complete results

Men's 800 m A-Heat
1. Tatsuya Nishikubo (Waseda Univ.) - 1:48.34 - PB
2. Leo Manzano (U.S.A.) - 1:48.45
3. Shunichi Takagi (Kanoya Taiiku Univ.) - 1:48.56 - PB
4. Naoto Arayasu (Fujitsu) - 1:48.88
5. Koki Kanbe (Daito Bunka Univ.) - 1:49.28 - PB

Men's 1500 m
1. Nanami Arai (Honda) - 3:42.70 - PB
2. Yasunari Kusu (Komori Corp.) - 3:43.01
3. Riku Tanaka (Tokai Univ.) - 3:43.13 - PB
4. Renya Maeda (Meiji Univ.) - 3:43.37 - PB
5. Ko Kobayashi (Tsukuba Univ.) - 3:43.78 - PB

Women's 3000 m
1. Riko Matsuzaki (Sekisui Kagaku) - 8:49.61 - PB - all-time JPN #2
2. Mao Ichiyama (Wacoal) - 8:53.54 - PB - all-time JPN #6
3. Misaki Onishi (Sekisui Kagaku) - 9:00.32 - PB
4. Rika Kaseda (Meijo Univ.) - 9:03.76 - PB
5. Yuna Wada (Nagano Higashi H.S.) - 9:06.87 - PB

Men's 3000 m
1. Tetsuya Yoroizaka (Asahi Kasei) - 7:52.70 - PB - all-time JPN #10
2. Takashi Ichida (Asahi Kasei) - 7:54.11 - PB
3. Hyuga Endo (Sumitomo Denko) - 7:54.79 - U20 NR
4. Chiharu Nakagawa (Toenec) - 7:56.05 - PB
5. Ryo Matsumoto (Toyota) - 7:58.00 - PB

Women's 5000 m A-Heat
1. Azusa Sumi (Universal Entertainment) - 15:38.95
2. Do Yeon Kim (South Korea / K Water) - 15:39.12 - PB - all-time KOR #2
3. Da Eun Jeong (South Korea / K Water) - 15:46.94 - PB - all-time KOR #4
4. Yuki Mitsunobu (Denso) - 15:52.57
5. Madoka Nakano (Noritz) - 15:53.32 - PB
DNF - Tomoka Kimura (Universal Entertainment)

Men's 5000 m A-Heat
1. Patrick Mathenge Wambui (Nihon Univ.) - 13:40.62
2. Simon Kariuki (Nihon Yakka Univ.) - 13:45.10
3. Toshiyuki Yanagi (Hitachi Butsuryu) - 13:49.19
4. Yuki Arimura (Asahi Kasei) - 13:53.05
5. Naoki Okamoto (Chugoku Denryoku) - 13:55.01

Women's 10000 m A-Heat
1. Sayaka Kuwahara (Sekisui Kagaku) - 32:27.36
2. Risa Yokoe (Toyota Jidoshokki) - 32:35.86
3. Yuki Munehisa (Tokyo Nogyo Univ.) - 32:36.83
4. Ayaka Inoue (Otsuka Seiyaku) - 32:43.87 - PB
5. Yui Fukuda (Toyota Jidoshokki) - 32:44.45 - debut
DNF - Bridley Delaney (Australia)

© 2017 Brett Larner, all rights reserved


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