26th Grand Prix De Rio Maior 2017


I reproduce António Manuel Fernandes’ IAAF report (see https://www.iaaf.org/news/report/rio-maior-race-walk-2017-arevalo-garcia) Colombia’s Eider Arevalo regained his title at the Race Walking Grand Prix in Rio Maior, while Peru’s Kimberly Garcia dashed hopes of a Portuguese win in the women’s race at the IAAF Race Walking Challenge meeting on Saturday.

20km Men
Led by British record-holder Tom Bosworth, a large group passed through the first 5km of the men’s race in 20:50. Ten men were still in contention at the half-way mark, which was reached in 41:15. Ireland’s Alex Wright, the recent winner in Lugano, led the pack at 15km. Having covered the previous 5km segment in 20:03, just five other men – including Arevalo and Bosworth – were left at the front.

Arevalo then upped the pace in the closing stages and, after covering the final 5km in 19:21, went on to cross the finish line in 1:20:40. His time was the second-fastest performance of his career, 55 seconds shy of the PB he set in Podebrady in 2013. It was also one second faster than his winning time in Rio Maior in 2015.

“I was looking for a good result here,” said Arevalo, who won at the IAAF Race Walking Challenge meeting in Ciudad Juarez three weeks ago. “I think this is the result of the work we have been doing until now. I didn’t have a specific time in mind; I simply tried go faster than my winning time in Juarez.” Following his win in Rio Maior two years ago, Arevalo went on to finish seventh at that year’s IAAF World Championships.

After a similarly strong start to his 2017 season, the 24-year-old now hopes to perform even better at the IAAF World Championships London 2017.

Bosworth finished second in a season’s best of 1:20:58 while Tunisia’s Hassanine Sebei placed third in 1:21:12, his highest finish from his six appearances in Rio Maior.

1. Eider AREVALO COL 93 1:20:40
2. Tom BOSWORTH GBR 90 1:20:58
3. Hassanine SBAI TUN 84 1:21:12
4. Manuel Esteban SOTO COL 94 1:21:13
5. Alex WRIGHT IRL 90 1:21:17
6. Perseus KARLSTRÖM SWE 90 1:21:55
7. Caio Oliveira DE SENA BONFIM BRA 91 1:22:13
8. Alexandros PAPAMIKHAIL GRE 88 1:22:46
9. Juan Manuel CANO ARG 87 1:23:44
10. Erick Bernabé BARRONDO GUA 91 1:23:55
11. Luis Fernando LÓPEZ COL 79 1:25:04
12. Miguel RODRIGUES POR 96 1:27:23
13. Jorge RUIZ COL 89 1:28:05
14. Miguel CARVALHO POR 94 1:28:59
15. Rui COELHO POR 94 1:29:26
16. Pedro ISIDRO POR 85 1:31:51
17. Max Batista GONCALVES DOS SANTOS BRA 94 1:36:16
18. Cristiano ANTÓNIO POR 88 1:37:12
19. Amaro TEXEIRA POR 89 1:38:32
20. Henrique SANTOS POR 65 1:48:06
21. Pablo GOMEZ USA 1:49:40
Joao MARTINS POR 95 DQ
Pedro MARTINS POR 68 DNF
Cláudio COTRIM POR 96 DNF
Lenin MAMANI PER 97 DNF
Aurelien QUINION FRA 93 DNF
Marco AMARAL POR 93 DQ
Sérgio VIEIRA POR 76 DNF
Hélder DOS SANTOS POR 96 DQ
Cesar Augusto RODRIGUEZ PER 97 DQ
Zacharias TSAMOUDAKIS GRE 96 DQ

20km Women
Local supporters had hoped that this would be the year when one of Portugal’s leading race walkers would win the women’s race, but Peru’s Kimberly Garcia pulled off a surprise victory. In a bid to shelter from the strong winds in Rio Maior, all of the pre-race favourites bunched together during the opening kilometres, passing 5km in 23:41 and 10km in 46:24. With the men’s and women’s races taking place at the same time, Colombia’s Sandra Arenas was passed by compatriot Jorge Ruiz, competing in the men’s race, at about 11km and she tried to go with him, a move which broke up the lead pack in the women’s race. Arenas had a five-second lead over Garcia at 15km, reached in 1:08:36, but the Peruvian gradually closed in on Arenas and eventually passed her before going on to win in a season’s best of 1:31:00.

“I’m very happy with this victory,” said Garcia, who finished 14th at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. “It shows the work I’ve made until now. I came here with a season’s best of 1:35 and I’ve improved to 1:31.” Arenas finished 13 seconds in arrears to take the runner-up spot. After finishing third at the IAAF Race Walking Challenge meetings in Ciudad Juarez and Monterrey, Portugal’s Ana Cabecinha once again finished third, this time clocking 1:31:54. Ines Henriques, who was contesting her 100th 20km race, was fourth in 1:32:15.

Sourced from Heel and Toe – Tim Erickson
Photo from www.iaaf.org

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