Skip to main content

Shitara Planning Another Marathon Before End of Year

Having improved his PB to 2:09:03 while finishing 6th at the Sept. 24 Berln Marathon, Rio 10000 m Olympian Yuta Shitara (25, Honda) returned to Narita Airport on Sept. 26 from his trip to Europe.

Shortly before Berlin, Shitara set a new national record 1:00:17 at a half marathon in the Czech Republic on Sept. 16. Despite this challenging schedule which was only decided in August, Shitara told reporters, "I didn't feel particularly tired [in Berlin]. There wasn't much lingering damage and I was able to meet the marathon's demands and hang on better in the second half." The difference in his splits between his debut in Tokyo in February and his second marathon in Berlin, a minute slower over the first half in Berlin and a minute and a half faster over the second half, was evidence of his growth since Tokyo.

Shitara is already planning his third marathon and could run it before the end of the year. "I'm the kind of guy who likes to race a lot. I get kind of lazy if there's too much space on my calendar. I want to take my PB even further and take the top Japanese spot," he said. His twin brother Keita Shitara joined the Hitachi Butsuryu corporate team on Sept. 20 and plans to make his marathon debut in Fukuoka in December. "We're on different teams, but my dream is for us to go head-to-head in a hard marathon and make it a Japanese one-two finish," he said, welcoming his brother's decision.

source articles:
https://www.daily.co.jp/general/2017/09/27/0010590814.shtml
http://www.hochi.co.jp/sports/etc/20170926-OHT1T50270.html
translated and edited by Brett Larner

photo  © 2017 Horst Milde, all rights reserved

Comments

Most-Read This Week

Kiplagat, Ichiyama, Tadese and Shitara Lead Marugame Half Elite Field

The Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon is always one of Japan's deepest races of the year on the men's side, its 2012 running setting a world record for the most men under 64 minutes in a single half marathon in history. On the women's side the field is always smaller but still home to the 1:07:26 Japanese national record set by Kayoko Fukushi (Wacoal) back in 2006.

Edna Kiplagat (Kenya), Sara Hall (U.S.A.) and Betsy Saina (Kenya) lead the women's international field, two-time defending champ Eunice Kirwa (Bahrain) giving Marugame a miss this year. Fresh off a 1:09:14 PB at last month's Sanyo Ladies Half, Mao Ichiyama (Wacoal) leads a trio of Japanese women with recent sub-1:10 times, something that has become a puzzling rarity lately. Fukushi is also back, her recent best of 1:12:04 a long way from her best days.

Speaking of which, world record holder Zersenay Tadese (Eritrea) will be looking to break 60 minutes for the first time since 2015. His toughest…

Cheboitibin, Kiprono and Sonoda Top Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon Elite Entries

With just over two weeks to go the organizers of the Feb. 4 Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon have released their elite field for this year's race. With its history as an elite men-only race Beppu-Oita's women's field is still tiny given its status as an IAAF silver label race, but this year promises a good race between two local 2:32 women, 2016 winner Hiroko Yoshitomi (Memolead) and Yuka Takemoto (Canon AC Kyushu), that should see the 2:39:57 course record fall. Defending champ Haruka Yamaguchi (AC Kita) also returns with a 2:38:43 PB from last fall that puts her range of the course record as well.

The men's race is heavier-duty, with a spot in the MGC Race Tokyo Olympic Trials available to the top Japanese man under 2:11:00 and to up to five others if they clear 2:10. Hayato Sonoda (Kurosaki Harima) and Taiga Ito (Suzuki Hamamatsu AC) are the only Japanese men in the field to have run those kinds of times in the last couple of years, and with support from 2:09~2:10 men

Tokyo Marathon to Move to March Date Beginning in 2019

At a press conference in Tokyo on Dec. 12, the Tokyo Marathon Foundation announced that beginning in 2019, the Tokyo Marathon will move from its current date on the last Sunday of February to the first Sunday of March. The next Imperial succession is set to take place in 2019, meaning that February 23 will become the Emperor's Birthday national holiday starting in 2020. The race date is being preemptively moved to avoid any potential overlap.

According to the Foundation, setting up and breaking down the facilities necessary to hold the Tokyo Marathon takes several days. With the finish area being positioned in front of the Imperial Palace there were concerns that problems would arise due to the large number of people who would gather in the area to celebrate the Emperor's birthday.

Translator's note: The Tokyo Marathon previously experimented with a March race date in 2009 but abandoned it to return to February the next year. Since 1994 the first Sunday of March has been t…