Yelena GINKO

Athlete Profile

  • COUNTRY
    Belarus Belarus
  • DATE OF BIRTH
    30 JUL 1976
    ATHLETE'S IAAF CODE
    183120

Outdoor

Discipline Performance Wind Place Date Records
5 Kilometres Race Walk 20:24 Hildesheim (GER) 27 AUG 2006
10 Kilometres Race Walk 42:53 Kraków (POL) 17 SEP 2005
20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:28:29 Leamington (GBR) 20 MAY 2007
50 Kilometres Race Walk 4:12:16 Scanzorosciate (ITA) 17 OCT 2004

Legend

* Not legal.

Indoor

Discipline Performance Wind Place Date Records
10,000 Metres Race Walk 43:54.63 Mogilyov (BLR) 22 FEB 2008 ABP

Legend

* Not legal.

Latest Active Season: 2009

Outdoor

Discipline Performance Wind Place Date Records
20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:38:47 Chihuahua (MEX) 14 MAR 2009

Indoor

Discipline Performance Wind Place Date Records
10,000 Metres Race Walk 45:09.06 Mogilyov (BLR) 13 FEB 2009

Outdoor

5 Kilometres Race Walk

Performance Place Date
2006 20:24 Hildesheim (GER) 27 AUG 2006
2005 21:04 Hildesheim (GER) 28 AUG 2005
2004 21:10 Druskininkai (LTU) 04 SEP 2004
2003 20:55 Hildesheim (GER) 13 SEP 2003

Outdoor

10 Kilometres Race Walk

Performance Place Date
2008 45:33 San Pietro Clarenza (ITA) 25 APR 2008
2007 44:06 Alytus (LTU) 15 SEP 2007
2006 43:38 Brest (BLR) 27 MAY 2006
2005 42:53 Kraków (POL) 17 SEP 2005
2004 44:28 Piacenza (ITA) 26 SEP 2004

Outdoor

20 Kilometres Race Walk

Performance Place Date
2009 1:38:47 Chihuahua (MEX) 14 MAR 2009
2008 1:29:35 Cheboksary (RUS) 11 MAY 2008
2007 1:28:29 Leamington (GBR) 20 MAY 2007
2006 1:29:06 La Coruna (ESP) 13 MAY 2006
2005 1:29:05 Brest (BLR) 01 JUN 2005
2004 1:29:02 Minsk (BLR) 08 JUL 2004
2003 1:30:58 Minsk (BLR) 04 JUN 2003

Outdoor

50 Kilometres Race Walk

Performance Place Date
2008 4:18:53 Scanzorosciate (ITA) 20 OCT 2008
2004 4:12:16 Scanzorosciate (ITA) 17 OCT 2004

Indoor

10,000 Metres Race Walk

Performance Place Date
2008/09 45:09.06 Mogilyov (BLR) 13 FEB 2009
2007/08 43:54.63 Mogilyov (BLR) 22 FEB 2008

Honours - World Race Walking Cup

Place Discipline Mark Wind Place Date
8. 20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:29:06 La Coruna (ESP) 13 MAY 2006
9. 20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:29:35 Cheboksary (RUS) 11 MAY 2008

Honours - European Cup Race Walking

Place Discipline Mark Wind Place Date
3. 20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:28:29 Leamington (GBR) 20 MAY 2007

Honours - National Championships

Place Discipline Mark Wind Place Date
1. 20 Kilometres Race Walk 1:29:02 Minsk (BLR) 08 JUL 2004

Honours - National Indoor Championships

Place Discipline Mark Wind Place Date
1. 10,000 Metres Race Walk 45:09.06 Mogilyov (BLR) 13 FEB 2009
Results in:

10,000 Metres Race Walk Indoor

Date Competition Cnt. Cat Race Pl. Result
13 FEB 2009 Mogilyov Belarus Ind. Ch. BLRBLR D F1 1. 45:09.06

20 Kilometres Race Walk

Date Competition Cnt. Cat Race Pl. Result
14 MAR 2009 Chihuahua IAAF Race Walking Challenge MEXMEX A F 6. 1:38:47
11 APR 2009 Nesvizh Belarus Race Walking Cup BLRBLR F F DNF


Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.


Updated 28 April 2008

Elena GINKO, Belarus (20k/50k Walk)

Born: 30 July, 1976, Svetlogorsk, Gomel region
Height: 1.70; Weight: 54kg
Lives: Minsk
Coach: Boris Drozdov

Some dream of becoming an actor, some a doctor. Elena Ginko, since her childhood, dreamt of sports. Her father had a reputation as an aficionado of sports and he managed to entrain his daughter with this preoccupation. Active and energetic at school, Elena took part in many school competitions. For some time she went in for swimming and, in the fourth class, at the age of 11, she fell for athletics. She went to sport school in her native town, Svetlogorsk, to trainer Valentine Volodkovich, with whom she began her path to the top.

After several years of study Ginko was advised by a young trainer (she doesn’t remember her name) to try race walking and she agreed. At the same time she ran middle distances. The new trainer did not work at the school for long - she got married and moved to another town - but Ginko (born Elena Ryzhova) nevertheless continued walking.

At 14, Ginko competed in the National Championship among coevals in Vitebsk. Young walkers at first walked 2km and then 3km. In a combination of these distances, she took fourth place and, in the next year, second place. After that the successful trainer, Feodor Kulakovsky, suggested she to move to Mogilyov, to study in the Regional school of Olympic reserves. Kulakovsky was the trainer of double World Championships bronze medallist, Valentina Tsybulskaya, and other known walkers.

When she was 15, after moving to Mogilyov, to the Regional School of Olympic reserves, Ginko began to succeed. Training in close proximity to famous athletes brought a lot of advantage. By the end of year she executed the requirements to become a candidate for the master of sports, and the next year she became a master of sports.

“If I had doubts concerning my sports future before, in Mogilyov I understood, that I can do much in sports,” Ginko said. “I have been provided in school with everything I need - meals, training equipment - and I didn’t depend on my parents. All I had to do was train and produce results. Victories urged me on even more, encouraged me to train with greater energy. Sport became my profession.”

A meeting with Vict?r Ginko, the leader of the Belarusian team in the 50km Walk, was a happy event in her life. In 1997 they decided to get married. The husband became her watchful assistant, always ready to help and advise with training and performance.

But Elena’s path was not smooth. Having excessive desire to show her best, she frequently failed to reach the finish because of disqualification. In 2005 she was 5th in the 20km Walk at the Russian open championship in Adler, setting what remains a career best 1:28:11, but she competed hors concours,  meaning that,  even if she had won, she would not have been awarded a medal. In the World Championships, in Helsinki, she was 13th (1:31:36).

In 2006, at the World Cup in La Coruña, the Belarus team took third place, with Ginko eighth. Ginko’s biggest success came only last year, in the European Cup in England, at Royal Leamington Spa, where she was third in the 20k Walk and Belarus won the women’s first prize. She will remember it for a long time. She wanted a medal very much but, before the start, she tried not to think about it. Anything could happen, especially in a discipline where the judges play such a critical part.

At 15km the Russian, Olga Kaniskina, and the Belarusian, Ryta Turava, made a break while Ginko stayed behind in the second group. At 16km Ginko increased her tempo and closed on the two leaders, forging a gap which ensured her third place. Turava’s victory, Ginko’s third place, and Sniazhana Yurchanka (12th) secured a team victory for Belarus. “Ryta is an obvious leader, a favourite in our team,” Ginko said. “She always helps in difficult situations. Her presence adds confidence. Her presence is invaluable, especially at team competitions.”

Prior to Leamington Spa, Ginko had many successful performances at less significant competitions which, nonetheless, were valuable in her sports career. In the 2007 Race Walking Grand Prix, she finished second in Naucalpan, Mexico, in March, and, three months later, in Krakow, Poland, third. She adds to this list the Olympic Games in Athens, where she was ninth. Also in her memory is a victory at 50km in Scanzorosciate, Italy, in 2004 (4:12:16). Her husband Vict?r won the 100km Walk there.

In the IAAF World Race Walking Cup, in Cheboksary, Ginko will not only compete for a top place but also for a place in the Olympic Games. She has already won the Olympic license, but it is necessary for her to finish in the first ten. Only then will an Olympic team spot be guaranteed to her.


Personal Bests
10km Walk: 42:53 (2005)
20km Walk: 1:28:11 (2005)
50km Walk: 4:12:16 (2004)

Yearly Progression
10km Walk: 2002 - 43:52; 2004 - 44:28; 2005 - 42:53; 2006 - 43:38.3; 2008 - 45:33.
20km Walk: 2001 - 1:33:21; 2002 - 1:30:57; 2003 - 1:37:23; 2004 - 1:29:02; 2005 - 1:28:11; 2006 - 1:29:06; 2007 - 1:28:29; 2008 - 1:37:40.
50km Walk:  2002 - 4:19:13; 2004 - 4:12:16.


Career Highlights
2001  17th  EAA Race Walking Cup
2004    9th Olympic Games
2005  13th World Championships
2007    2nd IAAF Race Walking Challenge
2007    3rd  IAAF Race Walking Challenge
2007    3rd EAA Race Walking Cup

Prepared by Mikhail Dubitski for the IAAF ‘Focus on Athletes’ project. Copyright IAAF 2008.

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