Kastytis Pavilonis

 

We are eagerly waiting for the upcoming Olympic Games. After Lithuania regained independence, starting with 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, country's racewalkers were always present on the Olympic tracks. We know that we will have our representatives in Tokyo as well. Živilė Vaiciukevičiūtė, Brigita Virbalytė, Marius Žiūkas, Artūras Mastianica are already trying on Olympic outfit.

We are hoping for our team to grow. Perhaps it won't only be Lithuanian athletes, but also the representatives from other countries who shall try their luck on the track in Alytus. For the 46th time the best racewalkers from many different countries will gather here. For many of them this might be the last opportunity to join Olympic teams.

46 years ago Alytus hosted the first event with 19 participating athletes, in 1988 the number of participating athletes and coaches reached more than 400. The history of Alytus racewalking festival is rich with achievements, and the footprints left by Olympic, World and European champions, the record breakers, from 50 countries.

Last year we celebrated 100th anniversary of Lithuanian racewalking. Centennial history embraces distinguished achievements on the racewalking tracks as well as memorable events in Alytus, Birštonas, Druskininkai and other Lithuanian towns. It wouldn't have been possible to host an event with competition system known throughout the sport world, if it wasn't for the organisers and highly skilled judges. It must have not been for nothing that Alytus got an opportunity to host European Cup event last year.

We wish you fast racewalking, victorious finishes and unforgettable experiences in the capital of Dzūkija.

Kastytis Pavilonis

President of Lithuanian race walking association

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