Japan, Korea highlight 2012 Tateyama Asian Championships this weekend

by Nicola Hargreaves on 03 Apr, 2012 04:57 • Español

The 2012 Tateyama ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships elite start lists are teeming with past Japanese Asian Champions including current title holders, Kiyomi Niwata and Yuichi Hosoda. However, with two Olympic spots awarded to the winners, Korea will be giving everything to claim the honours.

Niwata and Hosoda are both far enough up the ITU Qualification List to likely each secure an elusive 2012 Olympic position for Japan, but gold in Tateyama would confirm these positions.  In the women’s and men’s race, Korea provides Japan’s biggest challenge in Yun-Jung Jang and Min Ho Heo, but it will be athletes who have speed on their side that will triumph on this completely flat course.

Elite Women
A strong Japanese contingent will be in force in Tateyama with a result that may well mirror the 2011 ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships in Yilan less than six months before. Yilan saw a Japanese podium in the elite women’s race with three-time Olympian Kiyomi Niwata at the top.  Second was 2009 Asian Champion Tomoko Sakimoto and bronze went to 2010 Asian Champion Mariko Adachi.
Joining her teammates is Ai Ueda who already has her position within the Japanese Olympic team for 2012 following her performance in the 2011 Dextro Energy Triathlon ITU World Championship Series in London.

Yun-Jung Jang is Korea’s best hope of securing that all important Olympic spot. With two Pan American Cup bronze medals already in 2012, she will be hoping to pull off the performance of her life in Tateyama.

Zhang Yi and Wang Yi represent the strongest among the six Chinese contenders, a team equal in number to Japan. Of the two women often found to finish within a place or two of each other, it is Zhang that is closer to securing China an Olympic position through the ITU Points List.

Click here to view the Elite Women’s start list

Elite Men
Runaway favourite in the elite men’s race is reigning Asian Champion Yuichi Hosoda. Also taking the title in 2010, a win in Tateyama would solidify Japan’s spot through Hosoda for London 2012.

Ryosuke Yamamoto won the Asian Championships in 2008 and 2009, but has taken second place to Hosoda in the following two years. Taking bronze behind Hosoda and Yamamoto in 2011, Korea’s Min Ho Heo claimed one of the only non-Japanese medals at the whole championships. The guaranteed Olympic position that would come if Heo were to pull off a win in Tateyama would be big news for Korea.
While Ju Seok Kim joins Heo in the Korean campaign to prevent a Japan sweep, additional Japanese strength comes in the form of Hirokatsu Tayama who took the title back in 2006 and finished just outside the medals in 2011.

The wide elite men’s field of eleven nations includes athletes from Kazakhstan, China, Jordan, Uzbekistan and Mongolia.

Click here to view the Elite Men’s start list

The elite and Under23 races will take on the 1.5km two lap swim in Tateyama Bay from a beach start. The fast 40km bike course leads athletes around six laps along the totally flat straight coastline to the turning point at Nago Beach. The equally flat four lap 10km run takes the race around the Sightseeing Pier.
The elite women begin racing at 10:30 on Saturday 7 April with the elite men’s race at 13:10. For the second time, the Asian Championships will also include a Team Triathlon event, which will be run at 12:35 on Sunday 8 April. In 2011, Japan claimed the first ever Asian Championship mixed team relay title at the 2011 Yilan ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships, just beating the Korean team over the line.

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Related Event: 2012 Tateyama ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships
07 - 08 Apr, 2012 • event pageall results
Results: U23 Women
1. Yuko Takahashi JPN 01:56:20
2. Kishiko Ito JPN 02:01:01
3. Karin Chibana JPN 02:05:35
4. Karolina Solovyova KAZ 02:09:02
5. Onki Chan HKG 02:10:09
Results: U23 Men
1. Shogo Ishitsuka JPN 01:43:16
2. Ivan Lo Ching Hin HKG 01:43:29
3. Jumpei Furuya JPN 01:44:07
4. Akihisa Kobayashi JPN 01:44:19
5. Kohei Tsubaki JPN 01:45:06
Results: Elite Women
1. Mariko Adachi JPN 01:48:47
2. Yuka Sato JPN 01:49:06
3. Ai Ueda JPN 01:49:27
4. Kiyomi Niwata JPN 01:49:33
5. Juri Ide JPN 01:49:47
Results: Elite Men
1. Yuichi Hosoda JPN 01:39:31
2. Hirokatsu Tayama JPN 01:39:32
3. Ryosuke Yamamoto JPN 01:39:54
4. Harunobu Sato JPN 01:41:10
5. Min Ho Heo KOR 01:41:32
Results: Junior Women
1. Fumika Matsumoto JPN 01:00:12
2. Lianyuan Wang CHN 01:00:23
3. Oxana Grot KAZ 01:01:42
4. Misaki Kago JPN 01:02:04
5. Sumire Ohara JPN 01:02:12
Results: Junior Men
1. Takanori Sugihara JPN 00:53:04
2. Masahide Doi JPN 00:53:05
3. Shiruba Taniguchi JPN 00:53:10
4. Jeffrey Tang Ho Fai HKG 00:53:14
5. Kwok Wing Kan HKG 00:53:27
Results: Para Triathlon Male TRI-6
1. Ryu Nakazawa B2 JPN 01:02:38
2. Harumi Yanagawa JPN 01:02:47
3. Keiji Nagai B1 JPN 01:04:17
Results: Para Triathlon Male TRI-5
1. Toshio Furuhata JPN 00:53:35
Results: Para Triathlon Male TRI-3
1. Kenji Hashimoto JPN 01:06:35
Results: Para Triathlon Male TRI-2
1. Masaharu Kuwamura JPN 01:40:25
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