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2011 As Seen By JRN Readers

JRN's most-read articles of 2011 by month:

January
Waseda over Toyo as both break Hakone Ekiden course record.Jan. 3
Blood testing for better performance - learning from Hakone and pro baseball. - Jan. 8

February
Study finds to become world-class, don't work too hard in junior high. - Feb. 5
World's first two-legged robot-only marathon set for Feb. 24. - Feb. 16
Jason Lehmkuhle wins Ome 30 km road race - first American win since 1983. - Feb. 20
World Championships silver medalist Yoshimi Ozaki 2:23:56 Yokohama win.Feb. 20
Mekonnen wins Tokyo Marathon, amateur Kawauchi 3rd in 2:08:37. - Feb. 27
Japanese Federation and corporate league feel stinging impact of Kawauchi's run. - Feb. 28
"The Rocky of the marathon world" - Saitama Governor praises Kawauchi. - Feb. 28

March
What to do when the dream comes true?  Federation officials push management role as Kawauchi Fever sweeps Japan. - Mar. 3
Wilson Kipsang wins Lake Biwa with world-leading 2:06:13 course record. - Mar. 6
Federation tells World Championships marathoner Horibata to go on diet. - Mar. 8
Two pro runners hit by truck during half-marathon. - Mar. 9
Tokyo Marathon 3rd-placer Yuki Kawauchi gives $72,000 BMW prize to mother. - Mar. 11
104-year-old masters world record holder killed in tsunami. - Mar. 25

April
Niiya 15:17.84 PB after being fired from Toyota Jidoshokki corporate team. - Apr. 29

May
Track training Kawauchi-style. - May 5
Samuel Kamau Wanjiru, 1986-2011. - May 16
Wanjiru in the words of those who knew him. - May 16

June
Yuki Kawauchi building up for World Championships with 50 km ultra this Sunday. - June 16
Kawauchi taken to hospital after suffering heat stroke near end of 50 km ultra. - June 19

July
Murasawa and Sreedharan impress in Asian Athletics Championships 10000 m. - July 7

August
'09 World Championships silver medalist Ozaki runs 50 km at altitude in prep for Daegu gold. - Aug. 9
A report from World Championships marathoner Akaba on Boulder's Magnolia Road. - Aug. 11
Kawauchi looking forward to post-Worlds coffee. - Aug. 15
Osako wins World University Games 10000 m. - Aug. 17
Team Honda's Ibrahim Jeilan wins World Championships 10000 m. - Aug. 28

September
Post-race quotes from the Japanese men's World Championships marathon team. - Sept. 5
New Tokai University coach Morozumi discusses value of cross-country training after Saku Chosei H.S. success. - Sept. 29

October
Toyo University takes first-ever Izumo Ekiden win.Oct. 10
Charles Ndirangu 13:15.44 national high school record at Oita Challenge 5000 m. - Oct. 23

November
Kenya over Japan as both break International Chiba Ekiden course record.Nov. 23

December
Watch the Fukuoka International Marathon live - viewing guide. - Dec. 2
Ndambiri with the win, Kawauchi with the wonder - Fukuoka International Marathon. - Dec. 4
Kawauchi throws Olympic selection process into confusion. - Dec. 5
Working out the tactics that will take him to the World Championships, Kawauchi set for Hofu Yomiuri Marathon. - Dec. 16
Bat-Ochir and Kawauchi duel at Hofu Yomiuri Marathon. - Dec. 18
Japan in Wanjiru. - Dec. 19
Charles Ndirangu leads Sera back to National High School Boys Ekiden Championships title. - Dec. 25
Japan in Wanjiru - in conclusion..... - Dec. 26

(c) 2011 Brett Larner
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Most-Read This Week

Kawabata Over Kawauchi at Takashimadaira 20 km

Like a distant echo of the thunder of yesterday's Yosenkai 20 km reverberating across the city, Tokyo's other major 20 km road race took place this morning in the northwestern suburb of Takashimadaira. Narrowly surviving the loss of its main sponsor last year, the Takashimadaira Road Race offers a unique 5 km loop course that delivers fast times. Now in its 42nd year, Takashimadaira is a favorite for upper-tier universities that don't have to run the Yosenkai to requalify for the Hakone Ekiden, for other schools' second-stringers, and for top-level independents and amateurs.

This year's race was fronted by a group of runners from Izumo Ekiden winner Tokai University who didn't make Tokai's final Izumo roster, by London World Championships marathoner Yuki Kawauchi (Saitama Pref. Gov't) and others from yesterday's Yosenkai winner Teikyo University and the Hakone-qualified Juntendo University and Komazawa University. In the same cool and lightly rainy…

Kawauchi and Kanematsu Win Rainy Shimantogawa 100 km

The 23rd edition of the Shimantogawa Ultramarathon took place Oct. 15 in Shimanto, Kochi. 1822 runners started the 100 km division, where Yoshiki Kawauchi (26, Saitama T&F Assoc.) and Aiko Kanematsu (37, Team RxL) took the men's and women's titles for the first time.

The 100 km division started under a heavy downpour at 5:30 a.m. in front of Warabioka J.H.S. The 576 participants in the 60 km division got off 4 1/2 hours later from Koinobori Park, with both races finishing at Nakamura H.S.

Kawauchi, the younger brother of "civil servant runner" Yuki Kawauchi, ran Shimantogawa for the second time, improving dramatically on last year's run to win in 6:42:06. "Last time I was 21st, a total disaster," Kawauchi said afterward. "My brother told me, 'Don't overdo it on the uphills,' and his advie helped me get through it. The scenery around Iwama Chinkabashi was really beautiful."

Kanematsu began running with her husband around age 30…

Tokai University Outruns Defending Champ Aoyama Gakuin to Win First Izumo Ekiden Title in Ten Years

Kanagawa's Tokai University outran two-time defending champion Aoyama Gakuin University to win the 2017 Izumo Ekiden, its first win at one of the Big Three university men's ekidens under head coach Hayashi Morozumi and Tokai's first Izumo title since 2007.

Formerly head coach at Nagano's Saku Chosei H.S. where he produced the fastest-ever all-Japanese high school team and standout Suguru Osako (Nike Oregon Project) on a cross-country based training regimen, since taking over at Tokai in 2011 Morozumi has set about systematically developing the Tokai program into one with the greatest depth in Japanese university running. On paper AGU had a slight advantage over Tokai over the first half of Izumo's six stages, but with Tokai's second half runners, including its top two men Shota Onizuka and Hayato Seki, ranked at the top of their stages AGU needed a decent lead by halfway to stand a chance.

From the start it wasn't to be. In hot and sunny conditions Tokai&#…