Waseda University came from behind to capture its first title in 18 years at the Tokyo-Hakone collegiate ekiden road relay on Monday.
Waseda completed the 217.9-km round-trip between Tokyo’s Otemachi business district and the spa resort of Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture in a new record time of 10 hours, 59 minutes, 51 seconds, wrecking Toyo University’s hopes of a third consecutive title.
“It took a long road to get here. It’s a double pleasure to win as a coach compared to winning as an athlete,” said Waseda coach Yasuyuki Watanabe. “I didn’t know what would happen until the final 400 meters but the amount of training we put into this, which was more than anyone else, paid off,” he said.
Toyo, which led after Sunday’s inward leg, followed in second place while Komazawa was third.
“Toyo was also amazing. It just goes to show you the difficulty of winning in the Hakone ekiden,” Watanabe said.
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