The Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon in Japan was not held in 2021 or 2022 due to the pandemic. It usually welcomes 10,000 runners from over 20 countries.
It currently holds IAAF Silver Label Road Race status and the professional races attract over 1000 entries each year.
Competitors in the professional races are largely Japanese athletes, supplemented by African athletes based in the country. In addition, a small number of other foreign athletes are invited to compete each year.
The course is largely linear out and back from Marugame Stadium.
Sinéad Diver was among Australia’s long distance stars who continued their support of the event today.
In this morning’s 75th edition of the race, fellow Australian Olympian Isobel Batt-Doyle finished third in 69:27 in her first half-marathon (she ran 2:28.10 marathon pb in October 2022). Sinéad Diver was an excellent close fourth in 69:29 with Wellings clocking 72:17.
All three are coached by Nic Bideau.
Japan-based Pauline Kamulu (Kenya) soloed a 1:07:22 course record to win the women’s race by 49 seconds, 4 seconds under the old CR and her fastest time since her 1:06:56 for bronze at the 2018 World Half Marathon Championships.
Sinéad Diver and Louise Wellings both recorded their half-marathon pbs in the Kagawa Marugame event in previous years – Sinéad 68:50 (2020) and Louise Wellings 69:29 (2016).
The race provided a useful interim marker ahead of the upcoming London Marathon on April 23.
Great running Sinéad! She continues to run brilliant times and is looking to compete in the Paris Olympics in 2024, having made the World Athletics qualifying mark for the marathon with her fantastic 2:21:34 pb in Maratón Valencia last December.
Nagawa results – Women:
1. Pauline Kamulu (Kenya) – 1:07:22 – CR
2. Rika Kaseda (Kapan) – 1:08:11
3. Isobel Batt-Doyle (Australia) – 1:09:27
4. Sinéad Diver (Australia) – 1:09:29
5. Sarah Pagano (U.S.A.) – 1:10:15
6. Da-eun Jung (South Korea) – 1:11:19
7. Mizuki Tanimoto (Tenmaya) – 1:11:48
8. Yuki Nakamura (Panasonic) – 1:12:05
9. Yukari Abe (Kyocera) – 1:12:15
10 Louise Wellings (Australia) 1:12.17
Sinéad Divet : splits