European 50km race walk silver medallist Matej Toth was named Slovak Athlete of the Year for the sixth time at the annual Gala in Bratislava on Tuesday (13).
Toth picked up Slovakia’s solitary medal of the championships, winning silver on the first day of competition in sweltering conditions in the 50km race walk. Toth looked on course to complete the set of major titles but the reigning Olympic and 2015 world champion had to settle for silver behind Ukraine’s Maryan Zakalnytskyy.
Toth, 35, topped the poll with 631 points out of a possible 650 ahead of world indoor 60m finalist Jan Volko (563) and Maria Czakova, who set a national 50km race walk record of 4:14:25 and finished sixth in the inaugural staging of the event at the European Championships.
Toth’s coach Matej Spisiak was named Coach of the Year and world U20 800m fourth-placer Gabriela Gajanova, also a winner at the ECCC Track & Field U20 in September, was named Youngster of the Year.
Retired hammer thrower Libor Charfreitag, who won the European title in Barcelona eight years ago, was inducted into the Slovak Athletics Hall of Fame along with meeting organiser Imrich Ozorak, coach Jan Liska and Frantisek Pethe.