Osako rewrote his own Japan record by 21 seconds. If no one else breaks the mark in the final men’s qualifying race at the Lake Biwa Marathon next weekend, his place at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Game is secured.
“This was a race I’ve been targeting all along. It’s not official yet as there’s still next week, but I managed to set a new record which I hope I can build on from here,” said Osako who was in tears during the post-race interview.
“It’s been pretty tough for me since I finished third (at the Marathon Grand Championship) in September. I’m just glad that I got the job done.”
Osako also collected a 100 million yen (approximately US$928,000) bonus for setting a new Japan record. It was a moment of salvation for the 28-year-old star runner, who rebounded from a disappointing third place in last year’s Marathon Grand Championship.
Birhanu Legese of Ethiopia won the race for the second successive year in 2:04:15 – 17 seconds off the meet record – under clear skies and the temperature close to 12°C at the start.
Original Author: Shintaro Kano of Olympic Channel
Article Syndicated from olympicchannel.com