China to host 2018 race walking team world championships

Monte Carlo, Dec 2 (IANS) China’s Taicang has been awarded the 2018 IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships by the world athletics governing body’s council meeting.

The city in East China’s Jiangsu province won the bid as the sole candidate on the first of the two-day 207th IAAF council meeting chaired by President Sebastian Coe, reports Xinhua.

The International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) governing body’s council meeting concluded here on Thursday.

Since Russia is currently suspended from IAAF membership, the original hosts of the worlds, Cheboksary city of Russia, which had been chosen by the council in late 2013, was deprived of the right at the council’s last meeting during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Following the opening of the bidding process on September 2, the IAAF received expressions of interest from six cities, namely Guyaquil of Ecuador, Hammamet of Tunisia, Kiev of Ukraine, Monterrey of Mexico, and Tokyo of Japan adding to Taicai, which came out to be the only city to submit a formal bid by the deadline of November 15.

Taicang was host to the 2014 edition of these championships, then called the IAAF World Race Walking Cup, and is the Chinese leg of the annual IAAF Race Walking Challenge.

Following a presentation by a delegation from Taicang and the Chinese Athletics Association headed by Han Biao, Vice Mayor of Taicang and IAAF council member Zhaocai Du, the council unanimously awarded Taicang the 2018 edition.

“The Chinese Athletics Federation are extremely experienced organizers of IAAF World Athletics Series events, most recently delivering the stunning 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing,” Coe commented.

“Taicang’s bid and today’s presentation was of the highest technical level. China is one of the most successful race walking nations and we can expect large crowds of spectators in 2018, just as there were in 2014.”

“Of course, it’s a great honor for us to host the 2018 IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships,” Du Zhaocai said after Taicang won the bid.

“We’re proud to see this competition come back to our country. In fact, race walking is very popular in China and in Taicang. We host the Race Walking challenge every year and Taicang do a great job to promote race walking not only at the elite level but also as a fitness activity,” he said.

“We’re looking forward to welcoming you back in our home in 2018 and we are preparing for the delivery of a successful championships,” he added.

–IANS

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