13/04/2022   There are ten days to go to the 41st Dudinska Patdesiatka




Saturday 23 April could be a historic date for the new distance of 35km race walking.
More than a month ago in Muscat in Oman there was the first time in the Team Race Walking World Championship, but the period of year, the temperature, and unfortunately also the course not so easy, did not facilitate the timing of the debut of this distance.
35km men
The best time of the season is that of Sergey Kozhevnikov (RUS) who boasts a mark of 2:27:16, but for the known reasons he will not compete, as well as Sergey Sharipov (2:30:00) and Aleksandr Garin (2:30:25).
The athletes of Spain Miguel Angel Lopez (2:27:53), Alvaro Martin (2:29:59) and Manuel Bermudez (2:32:06) shouldn't even be at the start, because are currently not entered.
Instead, the cream of the walkers of three of the other leading nations are registered: China, Mexico and Italy.
Japan, on the other hand, will have its race in the magical Wajima circuit where even in the past years the teams of the national team of the Rising Sun have been built.
Mexico presents itself with some names of high interest:
- Jose Luis Doctor Morales (2:34:24)
- Jose Leyver Ojeda Blas (2:41:47)
- Ever Palma Olivares (2:39:11) and the brother Isaac Palma Olivares
- and finally the expert Horacio Nava together with Julio Cesar Salazar Enriquez and Carlos Sanchez Cantera
On the other hand, Ricardo Ortiz is not registered. He was able on 30.1.2022 in Coatzacoalcos (MEX) to stop the clock at 2:30:07 which at the moment, excluding Russian athletes, is the third world performance of the season.
Italy also has a group of athletes of interest, led by the 20km Olympic Champion, Massimo Stano.
Stano has only one previous experience on this distance and dates back to three years ago when in Gioiosa Marea (ITA) on 27.1.2019 he stopped the clock in 2:35:03, but since then his world and his goals have totally changed bringing the bar much higher. He didn't compete after Sapporo except for a 2.000m track show event, but we know he is in careful preparation.
The other members of the Italian expedition are: Aldo Andrei (2:34:46), Michele Antonelli (2:33:40), Teodorico Caporaso (2:37:56) and Stefano Chiesa (2:36:39)
And we come to the strong team from China that arrives in Dudince with six athletes, currently on stage in Saluzzo (ITA).
- He Xianghong who in Nanjing (CHN) on 22.1.2022 stopped the clock in 2:31:05, fourth world performance of the season excluding the athletes from Russia.
- Zhaxi Yangben, second in Nanjing, in 2:31:09
The other four athletes did not have personal best on the 35km having competed in particular on the 20km. I'm:
- Cui Lihong (20km: 1:17:52 and 30km: 2:17:21)
- Wang Kaihua (20km: 1:16:54, China's national record and second all-time world performance if we exclude the time of Sergey Morozov, RUS, 1:16:43 already at the time the subject of disputes and doubts)
- Niu Wenchao (20km: 1:19:33 and 30km: 2:14:21)
- Zhang Jun, the young star of the China team (23 years old) with a personal best on the 20km of 1:17:39 and a respectable palmares despite his young age (eighth in Sapporo and second at the U18 World Championships in Cali in 2015)
We have already seen in the 35km of Muscat how important in the 35km a base of speed is to obtain a medal. Indeed Perseus Karlstrom, Alvaro Martin and Miguel Angel Perez all come from the 20km, and they managed to leave Masatora Kawano (JPN) in fourth place who comes from the 50km race in which she has the national record of Japan (3:36:45).
If history and statistics repeat themselves we should expect a fight between 20km Olympic champion Massimo Stano and the athletes of the China team, Zhang Kaihua and Zhang Jun in particular, 7th and 8th respectively in Sapporo.
35km women
Among all the participants we see a notch above the other two athletes from China: Qieyang Shenjie and Li Maocuo.
Among the outsiders, the other very young athlete from China, Jihai Yin (born in 2000), the stainless Ines Henriques (POR) and Kimberly Garcia Leon (PER) who has already obtained a silver at the South American Championships in Lima this season and a bronze in Muscat 2022, both on the 20km.