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2013 World Championship Review: Men's and Women's Race Walking

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Men's 20-Kilometer Race Walk:

Aleksandr Ivanov became the youngest-ever World Championship race walk winner, taking the men’s 20-kilometer event in 1:20:58. The 20-year-old Russian laid back early, trailing by 14 seconds at the 10K mark. By 15 kilometers, Ivanov had joined China’s Chen Ding and Erick Barrando of Guatemala at the head of the field. Chen dropped back a bit, then Barrando was disqualified after being charged with his third lifting violation, allowing Ivanov to pull away for the victory. Chen, the 2012 Olympic champion, held on to second in 1:21:09 with Spain’s Miguel Angel Lopez third in 1:21:21.

Men's 50-Kilometer Race Walk:

Robert Heffernan won Ireland's first men's World Championships medal in 30 years with a decisive victory in the 50-kilometer race walk. The Irishman, who was fourth in the same event in last year’s Olympics, won in a world-leading 3:37:56. Russia’s Mikhail Ryzhov was second in a personal best 3:38:58, with Australian veteran Jared Tallent third in 3:40:03. Eamonn Coghlan gained Ireland's previous World Championships medal by winning the 5000 meters at the initial outdoor Championships in 1983.

Heffernan started relatively slowly, trailing the leading group – which included Ryzhov – by 18 seconds after 5 kilometers. The gap grew to 29 seconds after 15 km before Heffernan picked up his pace. By the midway point Heffernan was striding with the lead pack, including Ryzhov and fellow Russian Ivan Noskov. Those three walkers formed the lead group at the 35-km mark – with Ryzhov in front – before Noskov fell off the pace and eventually settled for seventh. Heffernan and Ryzhov exchanged the lead several times before Heffernan pulled away with about 10 km remaining. Tallent had lead early, along with Ryzhov and Noskov, fell back as far as seventh place, then rallied to gain the bronze.

Women's 20-Kilometer Race Walk:

Elena Lashmanova repeated her Olympic gold medal-winning performance in the women's 20-kilometer race walk event, moving into the lead late in the race to bring home the gold medal. Lashmanova finished in 1:27:08, three seconds better than fellow Russian Anisya Kirdyapkina. Vera Sokolova suffered a late disqualification for her third lifting infraction, preventing Russia from sweeping the medals. China’s Liu Hong inherited Sokolova’s third place spot and hung on to earn the bronze medal in 1:28:10. Elisa Rigaudo of Italy and Anezka Drahotova of the Czech Republic were the early leaders, with Lashmanova and Kirdyapkina five seconds off the pace at the 10K mark. The Russians moved ahead about 4 km later, with Lashmanova taking charge after 18 km. At age 21 she’s the youngest World Championship women’s race walk winner at the 20K distance.

Read more:
2013 World Championships main page
Men's World Championship Records
Women's World Championship Records

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