Olyanovska chases glorious goodbye

Lyudmyla Olyanovska
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Lyudmyla Olyanovska broke the Ukrainian national record last Sunday in Murcia when she was seventh at the European Cup Race Walking in 1:27:09.

Lyudmyla Olyanovska is in the form of her life and now she wants a gold to go with her record-breaking pursuits.

The silver medallist from last summer’s 20km walk at the European Athletics Championships in Zurich has focussed her attention on going one better at the European Athletics U23 Championships in Tallinn in July, a competition where she was also second in 2013.

And as she prepares for Estonia, she does so after breaking the Ukrainian national record last Sunday in Murcia when she was seventh at the European Cup Race Walking in 1:27:09.

Once more it showed the talent she has after her superb 2014 when she took second in Switzerland in 1:28:07 behind Elmira Alembekova, of Russia.

She was 22 in February and will seize this final opportunity to be at the championships between July 9-12.

"It is my last year in the under-23s," said Olyanovska. "That’s why I decided to participate in Tallinn.

"I will go to Beijing (world championships) in August too, but the European under-23 championships is my main competition for this year."

Her 1:27:09 showed the headway she has made since finishing second at the European Athletics U23 Championships in Tampere in 2011 in a then-personal best time of 1:30:37.

She said: "I am happy that I could break the Ukrainian record in Murcia but I wanted to win a medal there.

"At the European championships last year it was the opposite: the time was not the one that counted.

"Yet I am young, my results are better every year and I look for progress in my next competitions. I will do everything for it."

It will be a return to the Kadrioru Stadium for Olyanovska who was seventh there in 2011 at the European Athletics Junior Championships.

Speaking to uaf.org.ua, she revealed how her sister Oleksandra, 21, and her were probably destined to be an athletes.

"Mum ran long distances, and performed at the school and district level," said Olyanovska. "Perhaps something was genetically transmitted."

Now she hopes it is a gene which has gold sprinkled all over it.