8 May 2016

Race walkers break NZ records

1:45 pm on 8 May 2016

The New Zealand race walkers Quentin Rew and Alana Barber have broken their respective national 20km records at the World Teams Championship in Rome.

Quentin Rew

Quentin Rew Photo: Photosport

Rew took 17 seconds off his record to finish 26th in a time of 1 hour 21 minutes and 54 seconds.

The race was won by China's Zhen Wang in 1:19:22.

Barber also placed 26th in a time of 1:32:48, two seconds better than her previous best.

Hong Liu won gold in the women's race with 1:25:59.

Rew has already qualified for the 50km walk in Rio, but today's result should also bring him the nomination to compete in the 20km race at this year's Olympics.

The two events are seperated by a week on the Rio calendar and the New Zealander has shown he can tackle both discaplines after placing 17th in the 20km and 10th in the 50km at the Beijing World Championships in 2015.

Barber should also get the nod to walk 20km at the Olympics, achieving her second B qualifying standard in Rome.

New Zealand juniors Jamie Shaw and Laura Langley placed 51st and 45th respectively in the 10km under-20 races.