18/07/2021   Watching the athletes from Spain walking is like hearing beautiful music



Until the notorious 2015 Russia had undoubtedly been the leading nation of the European race walking all along.

Since 1996, the year in which the first edition of the European Cup (today the European Race Walking Team Championship) began, Russia had collected 33 medals in the various editions of the Cup (24 in men and 9 in women), without counting those subsequently won in the same period in the U20 and U23 European Championships. 

Until 2019 included, only Italy, at the women's level in the European Cup (excluding the U20’s), had managed to do better than Russia by winning 10 medals against the 9 won by Russia and Spain.

Spain, on the other hand, at the men's level, had obtained 17 medals in the European Cup against 24 from Russia and 10 from Italy.


Anyone who have a smattering of race walking knew that, with the exception of a few sporadic cases, the three leading countries were precisely Russia, Spain and Italy.

Incidentally, it was also the Countries that offered the public a technically interesting race walk, beautiful to look at, which for decades was considered by many as a model to be copied.


After 2015 with the exit of Russia from the European scene for the well-known reasons, in Europe we have witnessed a race towards leadership.

Or at least the attempt to undermine the European virtual podium, Spain and Italy, which until then had been the maids of honour of Russia.

France, Great Britain, Poland at the male level and Portugal, the Czech Republic at the female level have joined this “club of aspirants to European leadership”.

In recent years, we have also witnessed an effervescent growth in Turkey, capable of winning 9 medals in the three most important European competitions in the two-year period 2019-2021 (European Team Walking Championship, European U20 Championships and U23 European Championships).


At the request of some of our foreign readers, we have also expanded our analysis to the technical profile at the level of a single Country.

In other words, we have examined the number of technical sanctions (intended as the sum of men and women in the totality of the scheduled events) of red cards issued by the different juries in the three competitions indicated above.

We then compared the two-years period both in terms of red cards and in terms of medals won.


The results are presented in the following three tables



Year 2019 Table

In the first column, the Nations are indicated with the following colors:
- Pink those who saw their technical situation worsen in 2021
- White the one that had in 2021 a technical situation same to 2019
- Green those who saw their technical situation improved in 2021
In the following columns the details of the competitions taken into consideration



Year 2021 Table
In the first column the Nations.
In the following columns the details of the competitions taken into consideration.

Summary table 2019-2021 and medals
The third and last table presents in summary terms what is indicated in the first two, and the positive and negative differences.
In the last three columns, the total number of medals from each single nation in the two-year period.
In this table we allow ourselves to draw the attention of our readers to Turkey, which at the moment represents the real novelty of race walking in Europe. A novelty that has been repeated for some years and of which confirmation is also expected in the future.




This little analysis unmistakably tells us some things:
- now the European leading nation is Spain. Among other things, we remember that today Spain has the three male European reigning champions  (Alvaro Martin - sen; José Manuel Perez - U23 and Paul McGrath - U20);
- Spain also managed to improve the average technical level of its results in the two-year period;
- Spain has conquered in the two years more than 25% of the medals available in the three competitions examined.
The Spaniards are there to participate, they are there to win and they are always there to honor their victories with a very good walk, in short, they are always there ...
We don't know what else to say. Nothing, we lack for words.
Suggestions accepted !