Are their opportunities for elite race walkers?
Many people are surprised to hear that race walking is an Olympic event. Others think it was "just added." Race walking has a long and proud history in the Olympics. Perhaps one like no other event. The first appearance of race walking in the Olympics occured in the 1908 (as well as the 1906 unofficial games) at two distances: 3500m and 10 miles. Currently 20km and 50km events are participated by men and 20km for the women. Champions come from a diverse, ever-changing group of countries. How many gold medals do you know of from countries like Ecuador, Poland, and Mexico? Not many outside of race walking. Since a country lke the USA doesn't dominate and there is a relatively low cost to produce quality race walkers, almost any country can produce a champion. However, the Olympics aren't the only international opportunity. Others include:
Events like these provide an unparelleled opportunity to travel, compete and have really unique experiences.