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Kumanichi 30 km Announces Elite Field

translated and edited by Brett Larner

On Jan. 13 the organizers of the Feb. 19 Kumamoto-jo Marathon announced the 19-strong elite field for the 61st running of the Kumanichi 30 km Road Race, the world's premier 30 km held alongside the marathon.  Heading the men's field are last year's 5th-placer Shun Sakuraoka (Toyo Univ.) who finished 4th on the Hakone Ekiden's Fourth Stage on Jan. 2, and New Year Ekiden Third Stage runner-up Yuichiro Ueno (DeNA).

Representing the corporate leagues alongside Ueno are his DeNA teammate Toshio Takaki who ran the competitive Fourth Stage at the New Year Ekiden, Ryu Takaku (Yakult), Shoya Okuno (Toyota Kyushu), Shuhei Yamaguchi (Asahi Kasei) and more.  Kumamoto natives include Kyushu Gakuin H.S. and Aoyama Gakuin University graduate Shun Yamamura and Keisuke Tanaka (Fujitsu).  Along with Sakuraoka, university runners include Tomofumi Uda (Takushoku Univ.) who finished one place behind Sakuraoka at Hakone,

The women's field of 5 is led by last year's runner-up Mami Onuki (Sysmex) and 4th-placer Sakie Arai (Osaka Gakuin Univ.).  Erika Ikeda (Higo Ginko) will represent Kumamoto prefecture.  Along with 50 amateur runners, a total of 94 people are entered.

Kumanichi 30 km Road Race Elite Field
Kumamoto, 2/19/17
all times listed are best in last three years except where noted

Ryu Takaku (24, Yakult) - 1:30:32 (Kumanichi 2014)
Shota Yamaguchi (31, Fujitsu) - 1:31:28 (Kumanichi 2015)
Shun Sakuraoka (22, Toyo Univ.) - 1:32:15 (Kumanichi 2016)
Tomofumi Uda (22, Takushoku Univ.) - 1:33:22 (Kumanichi 2016)
Yuji Nakamura (27, Aichi Seiko) - 1:35:10 (Kumanichi 2015)
Shoya Okuno (23, Toyota Kyushu) - 1:02:26 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2015)
Keisuke Tanaka (28, Fujitsu) - 1:02:38 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2014)
Shinji Yoshimoto (26, Kurosaki Harima) - 1:02:51 (Marugame 2016)
Toshio Takaki (23, DeNA) - 1:02:51 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2015)
Yuichiro Ueno (31, DeNA) - 1:03:21 (Sendai Int'l Half 2015)
Shuhei Yamaguchi (22, Asahi Kasei) - 1:03:37 (Nat'l Univ. Half 2014)
Shuhei Yamamoto (25, Toyota) - 1:04:58 (Shibetsu Half 2016)
Kazuya Deguchi (28, Asahi Kasei) - 1:02:59 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2013)

Mami Onuki (25, Sysmex) - 1:46:37 (Kumanichi 2016)
Sakie Arai (22, Osaka Gakuin Univ.) - 1:47:53 (Kumanichi 2016)
Ayumi Kubo (21, Kagoshima Ginko) - 1:11:29 (Sanyo Ladies Half 2015)
Erika Ikeda (25, Higo Ginko) - 1:12:38 (Sanyo Ladies Half 2015)
Rie Uchida (21, Otsuka Seiyaku) - 1:16:57 (Nat'l Corp. Half 2016)


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translated and edited by Brett Larner
photo © 2012 Dr. Helmut Winter, all rights reserved