Skip to main content

Kawauchi's "First Choice" of a Run Commute Comes True

http://www.nikkansports.com/sports/athletics/news/p-sp-tp0-20140330-1277695.html

translated and edited by Brett Larner

The stars have aligned to bring the civil servant runner the perfect training situation. Ahead of September's Asian Games marathon, the Saitama Prefectural Board of Education announced on Mar. 29 that national team member Yuki Kawauchi (27, Saitama Pref. Gov't) will be transferred from Kasukabe H.S. to his hometown Kuki H.S. at the start of the new fiscal year on April 1.

Kawauchi began working for the Saitama government in 2009, and for five years he has worked as an administrative staff member at Kasukabe H.S.  With a work schedule that allowed him to train in mornings and run races on weekends, he rose at all once to the top class of Japanese marathoning.  The transfer is the first in his employment history, but at Kuki H.S. his position will be the same as his current clerical work.  Additionally, as a resident of Kuki the move will allow him to run to work, cutting down on his commute and giving him extra time to dedicate to his training.

With regard to the transfer, Board of Education director Ikuo Sekine commented, "There has been no special treatment," but when he was up for a possible transfer last year Kawauchi said that while he "did not want to be transferred," Kuki H.S. would be his "first choice."  It was only a wish, but this time it came true.

Over the weekend Kawauchi travelled to Incheon, South Korea to run the Incheon International Half Marathon and tour the Asian Games marathon course.  "It looks like there won't be any major changes to my situation," he said.  "I will still be going ahead with my race plans as scheduled."  In Incheon he placed 5th in 1:06:04.  Looking ahead after five years working at Kasukabe H.S., Kawauchi's resolve remained strong as he said, "the next five years are the main event."

Comments

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…

Osaka Marathon Elite Field

One of the world's ten biggest marathons, in its six runnings to date the Osaka Marathon has continued to avoid the addition of a world-class elite field of the same caliber as at equivalently-sized races like Tokyo, Berlin and Boston. In place of doling out cash to pros, Osaka's women's field has developed into a sort of national championship race for amateur women.

In the field this year are six, probably all six, of the amateur Japan women to have broken 2:40 in the last three years. Last year's top three, Yoshiko Sakamoto (F.O.R.), Yumiko Kinoshita (SWAC) and Hisae Yoshimatsu (Shunan City Hall) lead the way at the 2:36 +/- level, with a second trio of Marie Imada (Iwatani Sangyo), Mitsuko Ino (R2 Nishin Nihon) and Chika Tawara (RxL) all around the 2:39 level.

Last year's winner Sakamoto and 3rd placer Yoshimatsu squared off in September at Germany's Volksbank Muenster Marathon, Yoshimatsu tying Sakamoto's Osaka winning time of 2:36:02 to take 3rd over …