Poland’s David Tomala won gold within the men’s 50km race walk at the Olympic Diversions Tokyo 2020 in a time of 3:50:08 in as it were his second race over the distance.
The 31-year-old Polish race walker finished 36 seconds ahead of Germany’s Jonathan Hilbert, whose time was 3:50:44.
Canada’s Evan Dunfee, 30, won bronze in a season-best time of 3:50:59.
“It was an amazing day for me. I can’t believe it,” said Tomala.
“I work for it my entire life since I was 15 when I thought for the primary time amid preparing I would like to be an (Olympic) gold medallist.
“At to begin with I thought (I needed to win Olympic gold within the) 20km, but this year changed everything.
“I competed for over 50km in Dudince. This was as it were the moment 50km in my life and I win it (the Olympic title). It is insane, right?”
The Olympic record holder Jared Tallent of Australia, who medalled within the 50km walk in the Olympics in Beijing, London, and Rio, didn’t make it to the start line in Sapporo Odori Stop after damage forced him to announce his retirement at the age of 36.
The withdrawal of one of the favorites blew the race wide open for the field that included the world record-holder Yohann Diniz of France.
The early front-runner was LUO Yadong of the People’s Republic of China, driving for the larger part of the primary 20 kilometers of the race.
But, by the midway point, he was reeled in by the chasing pack and dropped to 17th place.
Tomala took the lead after the 30km check and didn’t see back.
The Polish race walker’s infusion of pace proved decisive. It took away from the rest of the field, building up a commanding lead of more than three minutes with 10 kilometers to go.
At the 45km check, Tomala was still comfortably ahead, but there was a fight on for the silver medal.
Germany’s Jonathan Hilbert and Spain’s Marc Tur had separated themselves from the rest of the chasing gather and shoulder to shoulder as they paced the streets.
But within the closing stages, Tur started to fade, and Hilbert moved away into second place.
In the meantime, Dunfee, bronze medallist at the 2019 world championships, moved through the field from 6th to fourth.
And as the wrap-up line drew nearer, the Canadian reeled in Hilbert, passing him to take the bronze.
This is Canada’s, first-ever Olympic medal within the 50km race walk.
The bronze medal is redemption for Dunfee, who narrowly missed the platform in Rio in 2016.
In a move just like the one he carried out in this race, Dunfee made a move for the third put against Japanese race walker HIROOKI Arai. As the combine fought for the decoration they bumped and Dunfee finished third, but he was demoted to fourth after an offer by the Japanese team.
“My body gave me everything today. It is more than I could ever ask for,” said Dunfee explaining his surge into third place.
“My hamstring wasn’t cheerful with me that final six to eight k (kilometers). I kept inquiring for a small more, and it fair kept saying, this is all you have.
“Coming around that last bend I asked for a little bit more. I just inquired my body to give me everything it had and I was able to burrow deep and get it.
“I don’t need an award to validate myself. I’m pleased with what I finished nowadays, but I have been imagining this moment and winning this award for 21 years. I am over the moon.”
“Hopefully, today means we can stop talking about Rio,” he added.