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Running news

22 July 2020, 11am

Dismal outlook for rest of year

Sole remaining major Japanese race of 2020 cancels

by Brett Larner

Shonanlogo main

Organisers of the 6 December Shonan International Marathon, with 16,821 finishers last year, announced that the race will be postponed to an optimistic date of 28 February 2021.

The race is one of Japan’s biggest marathons and the only one this year with over 10,000 finishers that hadn’t yet cancelled. The press release also said that in an effort to eliminate plastic garbage along the seaside course, there would be no drink tables provided at the race and that runners would need to carry their own drinks.

The announcement of Shonan’s postponement means there are just three significant marathons left in Japan from October through the end of the year. The Mt. Fuji Marathon on 29 November, with 7200 finishers in its last edition, is scheduled to make an announcement by the end of next week That it will be cancelled seems all but a given. The Fukuoka International Marathon on 6 December has yet to make any public announcement.

The Hofu Marathon on 20 December offered a ray of hope when it posted pictures of its course being officially remeasured and recertified. If Fukuoka goes ahead it will give elite Japan-based men the opportunity to get in one last marathon this year. Barring Fukuoka offering an elite women’s race for the first time ever, Hofu’s remeasurement news could indicate that it plans to focus on giving women the same opportunity.

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