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“Fighting, Korea Marathon”

Posted December. 31, 2002 23:07,   


‘Sun, rise. Wave, crash.’ A hopeful Korean marathon aspirant runs in Jeju.

Bearer of the national record in men’s marathon, Lee Bong-ju (33), and bearer of national record in women’s marathon, Kwon Eun-ju (26). And Jung Nam-gyun (25) who finished first in 2000 Dong-A Seoul international marathon….

Stars of Samsung electronics who lead Korea marathon started New Year’s morning in Jeju. They run and run facing sharp winds with the dream of breaking Korea’s national record.

Goal of ‘Bongdari’, Lee Bong-ju in the New Year is to break the national record and to win London marathon. He has been busy ‘training body’ in Jeju since 15th. He strengthened training such as weight training, circuit training and running (280km per week) each, in the dawn, morning and afternoon.

Lee Bong-ju will concentrate on speed and tenacity at Gosung Gyeongnam from the 5th. He will compete with Dakaoka Doshinari (32. Japan), who is a bearer of the Asian record on 13th at Asahi. The place will be around Asahi Station of 99.9km that connects Fukuoka and Gokura. And he will join ‘hell training’ at Kunming, China in February.

Jung Nam-gyun who appeared suddenly in 2000 Dong-A marathon, winning it in 2 hours 11 minutes 29 seconds. His New Year goal is winning Dong-A marathon in March. He has recovered from the wound and has made up his mind before the dawn wave, saying, “I will prove my victory three years ago was not just a luck.”

‘Marathon Queen’, Kwon Eun-ju has suffered injury on the sole of her foot after recording the national record in 1997. She determines recovery after hearing reports of ‘the faded player’. Though her face is swollen and ears frozen due to cold wind, she is encouraged remembering ‘glory of March’.

There are players who dream of brilliant birth in Dong-A marathon. Lee Myung-seung (24. the highest record 2 hours 19 minutes 47 seconds) and Park Ju-yong (23. the highest record 2 hours 35 minutes 11 seconds) challenge breaking 2 hours 10 minutes in men’s field. Woman player Oh Jung-hee (25. the highest record 2 hours 35 minutes 11 seconds) will compete with senior player Kwon Eun-ju.

Players from Kunkook University, KOWACO, KEPCO, Kumi city hall and SOSFO will start training in Jeju within this month. Winter Mecca of marathon, Jeju is glowing.

Jong-Koo Yang yjongk@donga.com