Sweden’s Armand Duplantis has taken pole vault to a ridiculous new height — and his reign is just beginning.
The 22-year-old Duplantis claimed his first World Championships gold on Monday and shattered his the world record for the fifth time as he pushed the mark to previously unfathomable heights.
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In any pole vault event now, it’s Duplantis Vs himself as he showed at the World Champs.
The US’ Christopher Nilsen won silver, while the Philippines’ Ernest John Obiena both flew for 5.94m for silver and bronze respectively. Obiena’s mark was a new Asian record.
But US-born Duplantis accounted for it easily, going 6.21m on his second attempt.
In fact, he had just one miss with his first attempt at 5.87m, not missing another jump until the world record attempt.
And he celebrated in style.
Previously, the pole vault record stalled at 6.14m for 20 years as Ukrainian Serhiy Bubka’s mark stood from 1994 to 2014.
Frenchman Renaud Lavillenie was the man to final break it, but since 2020, Duplantis has taken the record from 6.16m to the previously unthinkable 6.21m.
He has broken the record three times this year alone.
The packed, raucous crowd at Hayward Field went wild as Duplantis sprinted to see his father and coach Greg and plant a kiss on girlfriend Desire Inglander.
“It is great, I cannot complain,” Duplantis said, whose new mark bettered by 1cm his previous best set when winning gold at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade in March.
“Actually, I did not think about the record that much today,” he said. “Usually, it is always somewhere in the back of my mind but today, I was really focused on the win and I really wanted to win the gold so badly. It was the medal I was missing.
“I love jumping in Eugene and it was amazing here. I cannot figure the next heights right now. I am going to have a bit time off with my family and my friends.”
Hopefully he doesn’t rest for too long, as the rest of the world wants more.
Sweden’s official Twitter account wrote: “Fantastic #WorldAthleticsChamps gold medal news! Huge congratulations to Swedish Olympic champion Armand Mondo Duplantis, who broke the world men’s pole vault record with 6.21m in Oregon!”
USA Today’s Dan Wolken wrote: “Mondo Duplantis is insane. Most dominant athlete at their sport currently on the planet?”
US TV reporter Brooke Kirchhofer said: “MONDO DUPLANTIS!!!! Another new world record. Un-freakin-believable. The SIXTH world record in his career.”
Journalist Anand Datla tweeted: “Sydney McLaughlin and Armand Gustav Duplantis, Mondo of course, are living examples of how the species is increasingly ready for shattering our ideas of excellence. Yet another phenomenal jump by the Swede!!”
The Inquirer’s Mark Giongco added: “How many times is Duplantis going to break the world record? He’s only 22 years old. Wild.”
Writer Kate Carter posted: “Has there ever been an athlete so utterly dominant and so astonishing – yet so little known (outside of athletics) – as Mondo Duplantis. Ought to be a household name.”
These reactions also just scratched the surface.
Duplantis is routinely referred to as a “rock star” by World Athletics boss Sebastian Coe and is part of a golden generation of athletes who lit up the 10-day championships in Oregon.
A slew of other athletes also grabbed the spotlight during the championships, with 400m hurdler Sydney McLaughlin delivering a dazzling world record run, the charismatic Noah Lyles racing to gold in the 200m and Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan shattered the 100m hurdles mark.
For Australia, Kelsey-Lee Barber defended her javelin title, high jumper Eleanor Patterson won gold and pole vaulter Nina Kennedy claimed bronze.
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