18/01/2021   Istanbul (TUR): A storm of records and personal best at the Turkish Indoor National Championships




The Turkish Indoor Championships were held in Istanbul last weekend
5,000m indoor walk women
The young Turkish walker, the 21-year-old (born 28.10.1999) Ayse Tekdal (TUR), was the star of these indoor championships by winning the 5,000 meters race with a time of 21:00.97 and beating the absolute and U23 records of the Turkey for no less than 54 seconds.
Tekdal, born in the city of Diyarbakir, in south-eastern Anatolia, is one of the most promising walkers of this new Turkish generation, with an interesting international curriculum of the highest level among young people (silver in the U18 Europeans in 2016, bronze in the U20 World Cup, in 2018, gold in the U23 European Championship, in 2019).
Her personal best are very interesting:
- 5.000m walk on outdoor track: 21:58.62 (Ankara, TUR - 25.5.2019)
- 10,000m walk on outdoor track: 45:49.43 (Tampere, FIN - 14.7.2018)
- 20km road walk: 1:32:01 (Izmir, TUR - 3.3.2019)

The high presence of athletes at the start forced the division into two series of the 22 participants with the best accreditation times who competed in group A.
And it was in the women's main series that the spectacular race took place with the battle for victory between the most accredited Turkish walker today, Meryem Bekmez (TUR), also from Diyarbakir and Tekdal.
Bekmez, who already has the Olympic standard entry in the 20 km, had to succumb to the will of victory of the day by her fellow citizen, she was second with a mark of 21:05.56.
The national distance record that belonged to Meryem Bekmez (21:54.25, set in Istanbul on 13.1.2018 which was smashed by both walkers, is the value on which the growth of race walking in Turkey under the leadership of Mustafa Akyavas is being measured.
Third place to Kader Dost (TUR) in 22:47.99.



5.000m indoor walk men
Also in the men's race a high number of entries, which forced the organizers to run three series (27 athletes),
However, Salih Korkmaz, the most accredited Turkish walker of the moment, was absent, already with the standard for the Olympic Games in the 20 km walk but the level of the race was just as interesting.
With the first two final marks under 20 minutes, the victory went to Abdulselam Imük (TUR) in 19:21.93 (new personal best, previous of 20: 33.19 also established in Istanbul, TUR on 13.1.2018)



Second place to Selman Ilhan (TUR) in 19:49.02 (new personal best, previous of 20:06.21 established again in Istanbul, TUR on 11.1.2020). It is very curious, but interesting, note that even in men, as in women, the top two finishers come from the city of Diyarbakir which is proving to be the potential center of race walking in Turkey.
He completed the podium in third position Serhat Gungor (TUR) in 20:03.56, with a new national record (the previous one belonged to the time of 20: 20.81 at Salih Korkmaz and had resisted since 2016).
On the occasion, Serhat Gungor also set the U20 national record in indoor 3.000m, where he passed with a time of 11:47.57.