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Kwemoi Dominates 10000 m Debut in Hachioji


by Brett Larner
photo by Tsukasa Kawarai
video by Ekiden News

1500 m junior world record holder Ronald Kwemoi (Team Komori Corp.) made his claim to longer distances Saturday at western Tokyo's Hosei University, dominating his competition over the last lap to win his 10000 m debut in 27:33.94 at the Hachioji Long Distance meet.



Lacking some of the electricity of last year's Japanese national record shot, 24 athletes from four countries lined up in Hachioji's A-heat, some tuning up for the Jan. 1 New Year Ekiden corporate men's national championships, others chasing the 27:45.00 standard for the 2017 London World Championships. Normally reliable as a pacer, despite a perfect 2:46.00 opening kilometer Bedan Karoki (DeNA RC) struggled to keep it steady after just 3000 m. Some of the field went ahead of him for several laps before he rallied to take the field through 5000 m in 13:56.50, four seconds off target.

The pack stuck with him for another 2000 m before saying goodbye. James Mwangi (Team NTN), the fastest half marathoner in the world this year on a record-eligible course with his 59:07 win at September's Copenhagen Half Marathon, dropped a 2:41.64 for the eighth kilometer than put him ahead of a chase group of four or five.  American Chris Derrick (Nike) spent the next kilometer pulling Mwangi back, but despite taking the lead with 500 m to go Derrick couldn't match Kwemoi or Mwangi's closing speed.

Showing his roots in middle distance, Kwemoi put over four seconds on Mwangi and Derrick over the last 200 m.  Mwangi and Derrick battled to the line, Mwangi taking 2nd in 27:38.24 with Derrick 3rd in 27:38.69.  The top eight all cleared the London standard, Japanese national record holder Kota Murayama (Team Asahi Kasei) causing heart attacks for the home crowd as he just barely made the standard in 27:44.39 with a 56-second final lap.  The B-heat was also fast, both David Njuguna (Team Yakult) and Daniel Muiva Kitonyi (Team Kanebo) clearing 27:50 with Njuguna getting the win in 27:49.57.


Across town at Keio University, Izumo Ekiden and National University Ekiden champion Aoyama Gakuin University took six of the top ten spots in the A-heat at the Kanto Region University 10000 m Time Trials meet.  Third-year Kazuki Tamura led the way, outrunning Ethiopian Workneh Derese (Takushoku Univ.) for the win in a PB 28:18.31 that cleared the JAAF's 28:20.00 qualifying standard for next summer's National Championships.  Five more Aoyama Gakuin runners followed him under 29 minutes, continuing to up the ante in an arms race with rivals Waseda University, who were nearly as dominant at last weekend's Ageo City Half Marathon, and the ascendant Tokai Universtiy.

In the women's 10000 m A-heat, Saki Fukui (Josai Univ.) led the top ten under 33 minutes, winning in 32:38.29.  Eight universities from across the country were represented in the top ten, with Kyoto's Ritsumeikan University and Osaka's Osaka Gakuin University each landing two in the top ten.  Notable absences included National University Ekiden champion Matsuyama University and top-ranked Kanto region program Daito Bunka University, who are running tomorrow's Nikko Irohazaka Women's Ekiden as the course record holders and defending champions.

Hachioji Long Distance
Hosei University, Hachioji, Tokyo, 11/26/16
click here for complete results

10000 m Heat 7
1. Ronald Kwemoi (Kenya/Komori Corp.) - 27:33.94
2. James Mwangi (Kenya/NTN) - 27:38.24
3. Chris Derrick (U.S.A./Nike) - 27:38.69
4. Alexander Mutiso (Kenya/ND Software) - 27:39.25
5. Patrick Muendo Mwaka (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 27:41.28
6. Teresa Nyakola (Ethiopia/Mazda) - 27:42.75
7. Kassa Mekashaw (Ethiopia/Yachiyo Kogyo) - 27:43.55
8. Kota Murayama (Japan/Asahi Kasei) - 27:44.39
9. Samuel Mwangi (Kenya/Konica Minolta) - 27:45.27
10. Minato Oishi (Ethiopia/Toyota) - 27:48.56
11. Bernard Kimani (Kenya/Yakult) - 27:51.67
12. Mamiyo Nigusse (Ethiopia/Yasukawa Denki) - 27:52.69
13. Rodgers Shumo Kemwoi (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 27:53.49
14. Simon Kariuki (Kenya/Nihon Yakka Univ.) - 27:53.50
15. Shuho Dairokuno (Japan/Asahi Kasei) - 27:54.75
16. Daniel Kipkemoi (Kenya/Nishitetsu) - 27:58.32
17. Andrew Bumbalough (U.S.A./Nike) - 28:09.35
18. Alfred Ngeno (Kenya/Nissin Shokuhin) - 28:14.10
19. Takashi Ichida (Japan/Asahi Kasei) - 28:14.40
20. Mitsunori Asaoka (Japan/Hitachi Butsuryu) - 28:16.95

10000 m Heat 6
1. David Njuguna (Kenya/Yakult) - 27:49.57
2. Daniel Muiva Kitonyi (Kenya/Kanebo) - 27:49.89
3. Bekele Shiferaw (Ethiopia/Mazda) - 28:10.54
4. Shun Inoura (Japan/Yachiyo Kogyo) - 28:10.62
5. Hironori Tsuetaki (Japan/Fujitsu) - 28:16.49

10000 m Heat 5
1. Sota Hoshi (Japan/Fujitsu) - 28:12.70
2. Kazuma Ito (Japan/Sumitomo Denko) - 28:28.92
3. Hideyuki Tanaka (Japan/Toyota) - 28:29.61
4. Tatsuya Maruyama (Japan/Senshu Univ.) - 28:32.03
5. Yusuke Ogura (Japan/Yakult) - 28:33.59

10000 m Heat 4
1. Hiroki Nagayama (Japan/Waseda Univ.) - 28:25.85
2. Tatsuya Oike (Japan/Toyota Boshoku) - 28:28.50
3. Atsushi Yamato (Japan/Kanagawa Univ.) - 28:29.43
4. Chihiro Miyawaki (Japan/Toyota) - 28:30.09
5. Kosei Yamaguchi (Japan/Aisan Kogyo) - 28:34.19


Kanto Region University 10000 m Time Trials
Keio University, Hiyoshi, Kanagawa, 11/26/16
click here for complete results

Men's 10000 m Heat 10
1. Kazuki Tamura (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:18.31
2. Workneh Derese (Ethiopia/Takushoku Univ.) - 28:19.16
3. Takato Suzuki (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:31.66
4. Kensuke Horio (Japan/Chuo Univ.) - 28:34.54
5. Tadashi Isshiki (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:36.51
6. Titus Wambua (Kenya/Musashino Gakuin Univ.) - 28:41.43
7. Yuta Shimoda (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:42.88
8. Yuta Bando (Japan/Hosei Univ.) - 28:48.61
9. Yuya Ando (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:49.73
10. Ryuya Kajitani (Japan/Aoyama Gakuin Univ.) - 28:52.94

Women's 10000 m Heat 2
1. Saki Fukui (Japan/Josai Univ.) - 32:38.29
2. Maki Izumida (Japan/Rikkyo Univ.) - 32:39.18
3. Kanna Tamaki (Meijo Univ.) - 32:40.28
4. Yuri Karasawa (Nittai Univ.) - 32:40.57
5. Kureha Seki (Japan/Ritsumeikan Univ.) - 32:40.79
6. Yukari Wada (Japan/Ritsumeikan Univ.) - 32:47.74
7. Maho Shimizu (Japan/Osaka Gakuin Univ.) - 32:49.18
8. Saori Imamura (Japan/Juntendo Univ.) - 32:53.41
9. Sakie Arai (Japan/Osaka Gakuin Univ.) - 32:59.30
10. Moeno Shimizu (Japan/Tokyo Nogyo Univ.) - 32:59.91

text © 2016 Brett Larner, all rights reserved
Kwemoi photo © 2016 Tsukasa Kawarai, all rights reserved

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