Kaniskina wins women’s 20-km walk gold medal

Olga Kaniskina of Russia has won the women’s 20-kilometer race walk gold medal in a dominating start-to-finish performance in wet conditions at the Beijing Olympics.

The 23-year-old Kaniskina opened up a 35-meter (-yard) lead before leaving the Bird’s Nest stadium at the start of the race Thursday and continued to build on it across the 12.5-mile course until finishing in an Olympic record 1 hour, 26 minutes and 31 seconds.

Kjersti Tysse Platzer of Norway, who was second at the Sydney 2000 Olympics, finished 36 seconds behind to claim another silver medal.

Elisa Rigaudo of Italy won the bronze in 1:27.12.

Kaniskina won the world championships with a similarly commanding performance in Osaka, Japan, last August and went within a second of the world record at the World Race Walking Cup in May.

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