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News 07.04.2008
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Double for Team Plätzer in Rio Maior/POR

As I expected, the weather in Portugal was much better than at home. On Friday we had 25 degrees and SUN, SUN, SUN! It was the best medicine for my tired legs. 15 minutes into my training my legs were happy :-) I felt that the warm weather really helped my muscles and I didn't feel that tired anymore. Saturday morning my legs were even better and I started to be more optimistic for the second leg of the IAAF Race Walk Challenge of 2008. During my warm up before the race my legs still felt fine.... The conditions were perfect: overcast, almost no wind and nice temperature - not warm and not cold.

Our race started really slow, we past 500m in 2.28!!! Then Susana Feitor/POR pushed the pace down to 4.30 pace, in the leading group we kept the pace between 4.27 and 4.30 until 12km. Then I decided to walk a little faster and left the group. I felt fine for 500m and then I knew that I had done something stupid. I had to go back to the pace I had before to recover from my 2.09 500m sprint. From behind Susana Feitor/POR was hunting me and she passed me at 15,5km. I didn't feel ready to follow her and continued in my own pace. Susana got a good lead on me before she also started to feel the fast pace. Then I was getting closer and closer. At 19,7km I thought "OK Susana you will win today", but just 50m later I was suddenly getting much closer to Susana and I understood that she was having problems. Susana hit the famous wall and I started to believe in winning the race. From then on my only focus was to walk with a good technique as fast as possible. Less than 100m before finish I passed Susana. I walked the 20km in 1.29.29 and she finished in 1.29.31. Ana Cabecinha/POR walked a smart race and became third in 1.29.56 - her first time under 1.30.00. Greeks Olympic Champion Athanasia Tsoumeleka got 4th in front of Sabine Zimmer/GER who walked under the Germany Olympic qualifying time of 1.31.00 in her first race of the season :-) Olive Laughnane/IRL got sixth.

 

 

Womens Leaders (Photo Heiko Schulze)

Vera Santos/POR (10), Kjersti Plätzer/NOR (1), Ana Cabecinha/POR (12), Sabine Zimmer/GER (6) and Susana Feitor/POR (5)

Did you realize that three of the first six women are mothers? Athanasia, Olive and I. Another two mothers finished in 10th and 15th place ! It is possible girls !!! :-)

In one way I was very happy to win the Challenge, on the other hand I felt sorry for my good friend Susana, walking in her hometown. But the spectators got to see an exciting and interesting race, and they were fantastic! They were really loud the last 5km of the race :-)

 

The Men's race was just as interesting, with four different athletes being in first position during the race. For the first half it was Andre Höhne/GER who was pushing the pace, closely followed by my brother Erik Tysse/NOR and JuanMa Molina/ESP. Jefferson Perez/ECU and Rolando Saquipay/ECU were not far behind. For a while also former World Champion from Russia Ilya Markov was in the leading pack. At 16km Jefferson took the lead of the race, but Erik followed him closely. Then Erik pushed the pace and only JuanMa could follow, he passed Erik again, and at 18km JuanMa was leading 10m ahead of Erik. Then Erik still felt good and walked his last two km in 7.47, to win in his second fastest time ever: 1.19.51. Just 13 seconds behind his personal best. JuanMa got second in 1.20.06 and Andre got third in 1.20.19. The best thing of the race for Jefferson was that his good friend Rolando Saquipay qualified for Olympics with 1.20.52, in fourth place. Jefferson got fifth.

Men's Victory Cermony (Photo Stephan Plätzer)

JuanMa Molina/ESP - Erik Tysse/NOR - Andre Höhne/GER

Results Women

Results Men

IAAF Article

EAA Article

©Kjersti Tysse Plätzer