|Type||Competed in Olympic Games|
|Full name||Veniamin Vasilyevich•Soldatenko|
|Original name||Вениамин Васильевич•Солдатенко|
|Born||4 January 1939 in Shkurovka (KAZ)|
|Measurements||175 cm / 63 kg|
In 1976, Veniamin Soldatenko became the first ever World Champion in athletics without winning an Olympic gold. In 1913 IAAF decided that the Olympic Games would serve as the World Championships for athletics, thus the Olympic champions from 1920-80 were also considered as World Champions. But in the late 1960s the desire of many IAAF members to have their own World Championships began to grow and it culminated in the mid-70s, when the IOC dropped the 50 km walk from the Olympic Program. The IAAF responded by setting up their own World Championship in the 50 km walk, which was held in Malmö, Sweden, and was won by Soldatenko. Soldatenko had taken up race walking in 1962 and was selected for the Soviet national team in 1967. Besides his World title, Soldatenko won a 50 km walk silver at the 1972 Olympics and was the 1971 European 50 km walk champion. He also won a 50 km walk silver at the 1978 Europeans and bronze at the 1969 Europeans, placing fifth at the 1974 meet. Soldatenko won silver in the 50K walk at the 1970 IAAF World Race Walking Cup. He set one world record during his career, clocking 4-03:42.6 in the 50 km track walk in 1972. Soldatenko won five Soviet titles – 20 km walk in 1967; and 50 km walk in 1969-72. During and after his sports career, Soldatenko worked with the Soviet police force (militsiya) and later as a walking coach in his native Kazakhstan.
Personal Best: 50kmW – 3-53:24 (1978).
|1972 Summer Olympics||Athletics||50 kilometres Walk, Men||Olympic||2||Silver||Representing Soviet Union|