• Kyodo News

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The Tokyo Marathon will start giving preferred entry to runners who pay a membership fee, organizers announced Friday.

The Tokyo Marathon Foundation said it will begin accepting members from next February. Their preferred allocation will start with the race in 2012, with the membership fee yet to be determined.

There were more than 330,000 applications for the 2011 Marathon and the 10-km race combined. The field for the marathon is set at 32,000 and the 10-km race at 3,000.

The entry fee for domestic runners was ¥10,000 and ¥12,000 for runners from overseas.

On Wednesday, the foundation started allowing entry to the first 1,000 people who offer a charitable donation of ¥100,000 or more for the 2011 race. As of Friday afternoon, 672 people had applied.

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