As a 2:22:17 marathon performer and 2013 world bronze medallist, Kayoko Fukushi has carved out a reputation as one of the world’s leading marathon runners. Yet the Japanese athlete believes her experiences at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships also played their part in helping her achieve her goals on the road.
The 35th annual Osaka Women’s Marathon, an IAAF Silver Label Road Race, is one of the four qualifying races to select the Japanese marathon team for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, so most of the attention of the local fans will be focused on the domestic runners on Sunday (31).
Past Osaka Women’s Marathon winners Risa Shigetomo and Kayoko Fukushi will return to the IAAF Silver Label Road Race on 31 January with Olympic qualification on their mind.
The Ethiopian duo of Tirfi Tsegaye and Feyse Tadese together with the USA’s Shalane Flanagan aim to become part of an exclusive distance running club at the 41st edition of the BMW Berlin Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label Road Race, on Sunday (28).
Coming from behind to pass local star Kayoko Fukushi with 900m left in the race, Ukraine’s Tetyana Gamera-Shmyrko won the Osaka Women’s Marathon, an IAAF Silver Label race, in a personal best of 2:23:58 on Sunday (27).
The 32nd Osaka Women’s Marathon on Sunday, an IAAF Silver Label Road Race, will be held on a course that is essentially the same as that used for the 2007 IAAF World Championships and local interest centres on whether Kayoko Fukushi can finally get it right and deliver a performance worthy of her potential.