20km race walk bronze medallist Ben Thorne with Canadian team-mates Evan Dunfee and Inaki Gomez at the IAAF World Championships Beijing 2015 (© Getty Images)
Athletics Canada has selected four athletes for the IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships Rome 2016 on 7-8 May.
At the 2014 edition of this event, the team missed the podium by a single point. The top three finishers that day – Ben Thorne, Inaki Gomez and Evan Dunfee – all return and are joined by Mathieu Bilodeau, who recently achieved the Olympic standard in the 50km race walk. The four men will compete in the 20km event in Rome.
Canadian race walking has been riding high over the past year. Thorne took the 20km bronze medal with a national record at the IAAF World Championships Beijing 2015, while Dunfee and Gomez finished first and second respectively at last year’s Pan American Games. Dunfee went on to break the national 50km record in December last year, while Gomez recently bettered Thorne’s 20km national mark.
“Our race walk group has made tremendous strides since the fourth place finish at the 2014 World Race Walking Cup,” said Peter Eriksson, head coach and chief technical officer. “Winning medals at the World Championships, Pan Am Games and lowering Canadian records are now the standard for the group. Our objective is for the team to be on the podium in Rome.”
Athletics Canada for the IAAF
Canadian team for Rome
20km race walk: Mathieu Bilodeau, Evan Dunfee, Inaki Gomez, Benjamin Thorne