Dear participants, organizers and guests of the International Race Walking Festival Alytus 2017.

I am extremely pleased that this festival will take place for the 43rd time and each year it attracts many race walking professionals and enthusiasts from all over the world.

I wish all the success, strength and good experience to all the athletes and the organisers, as well the good memories to the spectators and the guests of the event!

 

Edis Urbanavičius

Director General

Department of Physical Education and Sports

under the Government of the Republic of Lithuania

Dear participants and guests,
The 43rd International Race Walking Festival organised by Kastytis Pavilonis is continuing a proud tradition build up over the last 43 years. Each year we can follow hundreds of walkers, today's and tomorrow's stars from all over the world bringing the real festive mood to our city and uniting our citizens, starting from the smallest ones, not only to follow, but also to participate in the event.
We are happy to welcome all of you in Alytus, have a great Festival here !
The Mayor of Alytus city Vytautas Grigaravičius

afiša 2017

Kastytis PavilonisThe first race walking competitions in Alytus was held four decades ago. In 1975 19 athletes from Alytus, Birštonas and Druskininkai took part in the event. The number of participants has been growing every year. The competition became popular in Lithuania and well known in foreign countries. Competitors from 36 countries, including Algeria, Kazakhstan, Belgium, Israel, Tajikistan, Italy, Azerbaijan, Sweden, France, Russia, Greece, Serbia, Spain, Mexico, represented their states in these competitions. The most numerous competitions were in 1988 – 386 athletes took part and even more were willing to compete, however due to lack of accommodation facilities they were refused the possibility. The Alytus’ festival was one of the first, where sport and culture were connected, and one of the first in Eastern Europe, where the winners received valuable money or material prizes. Some famous race walkers started their sports career in the Alytus’ festival.

 

Alytus has seen Olympic, World, European, African, American or Asian champions and silver or bronze medallists, as well as World record-holders. On the streets of Alytus one could see E. Nikolajeva, V.Cibulskaja, E. Misiulia, O. Kardopolceva, S. Eidikytė, K. Saltanovič, A. Perlov, R. Veigel, P. Počenčuk, A. Potašov, V. Kazlauskas, A. Fadejevs, J. Diniz. T. Gudkova, E Sanchez, T.Nymark, G. Sudol. In 1980 the first competition for women was held here. Sportswomen were wearing skirts, what now may make one smile, but at that time it was normal.

 

Alytus may be proud not only of this festival, but also of its athletes. R.Šimkevičius, R. Erlingytė, D. Baranauskaitė and A. Lebedžius became champions, silver or bronze medallists of the USSR. The latter won European Junior Championships bronze medal. Alytus people can also be proud of the four race walkers, who represented Lithuania at the Olympic Games. Gintaras Andriuškevičius competed on the Olympic course in Athens, brothers Škarnuliai made their debut in Beijing, Brigita Virbalyte contested in London Olympics.

 

Lithuanian athletes and athletes from many foreign countries will contest for valuable money or material prizes, and will strive to achieve the qualification standards for this year World Championships.

  

Kastytis Pavilonis

Founder and organizer of the Alytus’ festival

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