Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tokyo Marathon 2010

It was a cold and terrible day to begin the 2010 Tokyo Marathon but that did not stop thousands of runners and walkers from competing and performing at their very best. This year marks the 5th Tokyo Marathon. Both winners of the Tokyo Marathon take home 8,000,000 ¥en = $88,000 (men & women's 1st place). If the winner of either division sets a new World Record in Tokyo then he or she will receive 30,000,000 ¥en Bonus!!! Yeah! That is $330,000. But, it would not happen today. The men's winner Masakazu Fujiwara of Japan pulled away from the pack 2 kilometers before the finish and was never really challenged to finish with a time 2:12:19 and captured his first victory at the Tokyo marathon. The women's winner was Alevtina Biktimirova of Russia. After finishing 4th last year she surged ahead of all women and ran with the men to finish at personal best of 2:34:39. But these great winners were not the only racers in the crowd. Many of my friends were pushing themselves to personal bests and fighting the tough weather today.
I am very proud of my good friend Mary for working so hard the past months to prepare for the Tokyo Marathon. She performed well today in this cold cold rain. Many other friends ran today and I want to tell you all congratulations on finishing and doing your best. Great job Jason, Steve, Satoi, Susan, Barbara and Matt. I know many more were out there as well.
On the course today I saw many runners enjoying themselves and dressing up for the occasion. Many had costumes and others messages of peace and love. People were dressed as Santa Clause, Superman, Spiderman and even Jesus was there carrying his cross. But, the runners I feel deserve a great applause are the men and women with disabilities who are running the race. Some in wheelchairs others who are visual impaired. These blind runners have a special guide with them to help through the course and they wear bright pink to be seen clearly by other racers. I had never witnessed runners who are blind before or ever heard of someone running without sight. I find those people to be very motivating and possess a true demonstration of the love for running and sport. Keep Running!!!