Yoshio Koide

Kayoko Fukushi Doubles Up: Olympic Selection for 5 and 10!!!

Kayoko Fukushi (Photo courtesy of Wacoal)

Off of her pair of second place finishes at this weekend’s Japanese national championships, the JAAF announced today that Kayoko Fukushi (Wacoal/adidas) has been selected to represent Japan in both the 5,000m and 10,000m at this summer’s London Olympic Games. On Friday night, Kayoko ran 31:43.25 for second place behind Panasonic’s Mika Yoshikawa. Kayoko brought a qualifying mark of 30:54.29 from last year’s Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational. She is the second-fastest Japanese woman ever at 10,000m, with a PB of 30:51.81

In yesterday’s 5000m, Kayoko, who is the national recordholder in the event with a 14:53.22 mark, took second in 15:25.74 behind Universal Entertainment’s Hitomi Niiya’s 15:17.92.

Over the past year, Kayoko has also been building her road resume, with an impressive 3rd place finish at the 2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, and a 4th-place finish at last month’s Dick’s Sporting Goods Bolder Boulder 10K. She did the bulk of her training for this year’s Japanese championships at altitude, spending most of April and May  in Boulder, Colorado, with head coach Tadayuki Nagayama and coach Yukio Mihara.

Although Boulder Wave does not officially represent Mika Yoshikawa or Hitomi Niiya, who also were both selected today to represent Japan in both the 5,000m and 10,000m,  we are annually hired by their clubs to support their altitude training. Panasonic head coach Toshiaki Kurabayashi has brought his team to Boulder for altitude training camps each of the past four years, including this Spring to prepare for the national championships; while Niiya trains under Coach Yoshio Koide, who annually brings his athletes to Boulder for several months in the late summer and autumn.

Kayoko is the 9th Boulder Wave athlete so far to become a 2012 Olympian.

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Three Boulder Wave Athletes in Yokohama Invited Field

Three of our top women are set to compete as invited athletes in next month’s Yokohama Women’s Marathon, with the full invited field announced this week by race organizers. This year’s race will be the first of three Olympic selection races for Japanese women, the other two being Osaka in January and Nagoya in March.

Leading the Japanese and international field on November 20th will be reigning Yokohama champion Yoshimi Ozaki (Daiichi Life Insurance/adidas). The 2009 Berlin World Championships silver medalist, Yoshimi won the last edition of Yokohama in a course record 2:23:56 and will be competing with the other Japanese women for a berth on next year’s Japanese Olympic team. Great Britain’s Louise Damen (adidas/Winchester and District AC) is also in the hunt for an Olympic spot in the UK after her very fine marathon debut of 2:30:00 at London this Spring. And out of South Africa, Rene Kalmer (Nedbank/adidas) looks primed for a big breakthrough after running the second-fastest half-marathon of her career (71:46) at the Great North Run in September. Yokohama’s November weather should be much more conducive to fast times than were the temps in Prague and the Daegu WC this year for Rene’s first two runs at the distance.

As a note, Yokohama invitee Chika Horie and her Sakura AC teammates just this morning wrapped up a long altitude training camp in Boulder, Colorado, and flew back to Japan with coach Yoshio Koide.

Invited Field (as reported this week by Race Results Weekly)

Invited Japanese Women – 
Yoshimi Ozaki            2:23:30 PB 2008 Tokyo 
Chika Horie              2:26:11    2002 Hokkaido 
Kaoru Nagao              2:26:58    2011 Yokohama (Feb)
Mika Okunaga             2:27:16    2009 Osaka 
Ryoko Kizaki             2:27:34    2010 Osaka 
Mayumi Fujita            2:29:36    2010 Nagoya 
Kaori Yoshida            2:29:45    2010 Chicago 

Invited International Women –
Mara Yamauchi (GBR)      2:23:12 PB 2009 London 
Salina Kosgei (KEN)      2:23:22    2006 Berlin
Robe Guta (ETH)          2:24:35    2006 Hamburg 
Alevtina Ivanova (RUS)   2:26:38    2008 Nagano  
Kateryna Stetsenko (UKR) 2:27:51    2010 Dublin
Louise Damen (GBR)       2:30:00    2011 London 
Rene Kalmer (RSA)        2:34:47    2011 Praha 

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