Liu Hong (racewalker)

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Liu Hong
Personal information
Born (1987-05-12) 12 May 1987 (age 30)
Anfu County, China
Height 1.60 m (5 ft 3 in)
Weight 50 kg (110 lb)
Country  China
Sport Athletics
Event(s) 20km Race Walk

Liu Hong (simplified Chinese: 刘虹; traditional Chinese: 劉虹; pinyin: líu hóng; born 12 May 1987 in Anfu, Jiangxi) is a Chinese female race walker. She is the world record holder over the Olympic 20 km distance with a time of 1:24:38 hours, set in 2015. Liu won medals at the World Championships in Athletics in 2009, 2011 and 2013; She placed fourth at the Summer Olympics in both 2008 and 2012, Liu is the 2016 Olympic 20 km racewalking gold medalist.

Liu is a two-time gold medallist at the Asian Games (2006 and 2010). She was the runner-up at the IAAF World Race Walking Cup in 2014. In her early career, she was the World Junior Champion in 2006.


She first came to prominence by winning the World Junior and Asian Games titles in 2006. After a poor global debut at the 2007 World Championships in Athletics (19th), she rebounded with a fourth-place finish at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. However, since Russia's Olga Kaniskina was disqualified in March 2016 for doping, Liu is expected to be awarded the bronze medal. She secured her first major medal at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, taking the bronze medal. Later that year she took the national title at the 11th Chinese National Games.[1]

Liu retained her title at the 2010 Asian Games and broke the Games record with a time of 1:30:06 hours.[2] She opened her 2011 season with a win on the 2011 racewalking circuit at the Memorial Mario Albisetti.[3] She followed this with a win in Taicang, equalling her personal best in the process.[4] A third circuit win came in Dublin that year. She won the silver medal at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics, beaten only by Olga Kaniskina who won her third straight title. Liu broke the Asian record for the 20 km walk in Taicang in 2012, defeating Wang Yan's decade-old record with a time of 1:25:46 hours.[5]

She missed out on a medal at the 2012 London Olympics, placing fourth behind Qieyang Shenjie, who also broke her Asian record. Liu won at the 2012 IAAF World Race Walking Challenge Final, however, and defeated Qieyang en route to breaking Jin Bingjie's 22-year-old Asian record for the 5000 m walk at the Chinese University Games.[6] She set an event record in her first race of 2013, winning the Memorial Albisetti in a time of 1:27:06 hours.[7]

She broke the world record for the 20 km walk at the Gran Premio Cantones de La Coruña. Taking advantage of warm conditions, she completed the distance in 1:24:38 hours, walking the second 10 km faster than the first, to improve the world record by 24 seconds. This was the fastest time ever, also beating Olimpiada Ivanova and Olga Kaniskina's times that were not ratified as records due to a lack of international judges.[8]

After testing positive for higenamine in May 2016, she was banned from June 13 to July 13, 2016.[9][10]

She won the gold medal with 1:28:35 in women's 20 km walk at Rio Olympic Games on 19 Aug. 2016.

International competitions[edit]

Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
Representing  China
2006 World Junior Championships Beijing, China 1st 10,000 m 45:12.84
World Race Walking Cup La Coruña, Spain 6th 20 km 1:28:59
Asian Games Doha, Qatar 1st 20 km 1:32.19
2007 World Championships Osaka, Japan 19th 20 km 1:36:40
2008 Olympic Games Beijing, China 4th 20 km 1:27:17
2009 World Championships Berlin, Germany 3rd 20 km 1:29:10
2010 World Race Walking Cup Chihuahua, Mexico 13th 20 km 1:36:34
Asian Games Guangzhou, China 1st 20 km 1:30:06
2011 World Championships Daegu, South Korea 2nd 20 km 1:30:00
2012 Olympic Games London, United Kingdom 4th 20 km 1:26:00
2013 World Championships Moscow, Russia 3rd 20 km 1:28:10
2014 World Race Walking Cup Taicang, China 2nd 20 km 1:26:58
2015 World Championships Beijing, China 1st 20 km 1:27:45
2016 Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 1st 20 km 1:28:35


  1. ^ Jalava, Mirko (2009-10-25). Liu Xiang begins campaign; Li Shaojie bags fourth gold - Chinese National Games, Day 4. IAAF. Retrieved on 2011-03-23.
  2. ^ Strong night for India as Asian Games kick off before a crowd of 75,000 in Guangzhou - Asian Games, Day 1. IAAF (2010-11-22). Retrieved on 2011-03-23.
  3. ^ Sampaolo, Diego (2011-03-21). Chinese dominate in Lugano. IAAF. Retrieved on 2011-03-23.
  4. ^ Wu, Junkuan (2011-04-24). China eyes race walking gold in Daegu worlds. Xinhua. Retrieved on 2011-04-24.
  5. ^ Jalava, Mirko (2012-03-30). Asian records fall in Taicang Race Walking Challenge. IAAF. Retrieved on 2012-04-03.
  6. ^ Jalava, Mirko (2012-09-18). Walking records galore at China’s National University Games. IAAF. Retrieved on 2013-01-27.
  7. ^ Chinese walkers stroll off with two victories in Lugano. IAAF (2013-03-17). Retrieved on 2013-03-24.
  8. ^ Liu breaks 20km race walk world record in La Coruna. IAAF (2015-06-06). Retrieved on 2015-06-06.
  9. ^ Liu banned for one month in 2016. Retrieved on 2016-08-01.
  10. ^ Liu banned for one month in 2016 II. Athletics Weekly. Retrieved on 2016-08-01.

External links[edit]