Kim confident of podium finish
At the training ground inside the athletes’ village, Kim said he was in good shape and felt confident about the racewalk course in downtown Daegu.
“I want to win a medal and make sure the championships won’t end up being a party for everyone else,” said Kim, who will compete in the 20-kilometer (12.5-mile) and 50-kilometer racewalk events.
The championships kick off on Saturday for a nine-day run. Korea is trying to avoid becoming only the third World Championships host to fail to win a medal.
Kim could contend for a medal in the 20-kilometer event on Sunday. He set the Korean national record in March at 1 hour, 19 minutes and 31 seconds, around a minute behind the season best, held by Wang Zhen of China.
Kim, 26, said weather conditions on the day of the competition will be a big factor.
“It’s been mostly cloudy and cool this summer in Daegu, and I’ve been able to conserve energy,” Kim said. “If it rains too much, it might be difficult. But I like overcast skies.”
Kim added that he would like to see Daegu residents along the racewalk course, cheering on the local stars.
Athletics experts say Kim has the requisite endurance and intensity to compete and could reach the podium if the winning time is around 1:21:00.