(Sports news) Olympic champion Mondo Duplantis added an extra centimetre to his own world pole vault record to claim his first major outdoor world title, he vaulted over 6.21m* at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon. The 22-year-old had improved his own record mark to 6.20m when he won the world indoor gold in Belgrade in March and he carried that remarkable form through to the World championships at Hayward Field. He insisted that he only had that medal in mind and the world record was not his focus but with victory secured when he jumped 6.00m, he then had the bar moved 21cm higher and took the title in sensational fashion.
It is the fifth time that Duplantis has improved his own world record; the Swedish star first broke the world record with a 6.17m clearance in Torun in February 2020. He then added a centimetre to the record set by Renaud Lavillenie in Donetsk in 2014 but for the first time in his career Duplantis broke the record outdoors. The last time an outdoor performance led to a world record was when the great Sergey Bubka soared over 6.14m in July 1994, which was five years before Duplantis was even born. Duplantis has now overtaken Bubka when it comes to career six metre-plus clearances as he has managed that feat 48 times to Bubka’s 46.
In front of a home crowd, USA’s Olympic silver medallist Chris Nilsen secured a world medal after clearing 5.94m as he went on to win the silver medal. The same height was also managed by Philippines’ Ernest John Obiena, who added an extra centimetre to his own Asian record to win bronze which subsequently was the first ever World Championships medal for his nation. Duplantis started the competition at 5.70m and decided to pass at 5.80m. The only blemish on his way to victory was a first-time failure at 5.87m, but he soon regained composure with a huge clearance on that height on his second try, moving him into a share of the bronze medal position at that stage but then he blew away his opponents with two massive vaults which helped him win his first World Championship medal.
“It is the medal I was missing,” said Duplantis, who had earlier cleared a championship record of 6.06m on his first attempt and received a world record cheque for US$100,000 along with his gold medal. “Usually, it (the world record) is always somewhere in the back of my mind, but today I was focused on the win.”
“I love jumping in Eugene and it was amazing here,” he said. "I was getting a bit tired towards the end, but I really appreciated the crowd. You guys lifted me and gave me the energy I needed to get over the bar."
Nilsen was also delighted with his own result on home soil. “Mondo is going to keep breaking records and I am just going to keep doing my thing,” said the 24-year-old. “This medal means that I am very consistent in what I am doing – to be the top three in the world.”