Duplantis sets pole vault world record at the Prefontaine Classic


EUGENE, Oregon—Sweden’s Armand Duplantis didn’t exactly remember soaring over the bar to set a new world record at the Prefontaine Classic. But knew what came next.

“I just looked up and the bar was still there,” he laughed.

Duplantis and Ethiopia distance runner Gudaf Tsegay both set new world records on Sunday to wrap up the season at the Prefontaine Classic track and field meet.

Known as Mondo, Duplantis leaped 6.23 meters (20 feet, 5 1/4 inches). The reigning world champion broke his own record of 6.22 meters (20 feet, 4 3/4 inches) set indoors earlier this year.

He was swarmed by fellow competitors after clearing the jump then hopped onto the track’s railing and struck a victory pose for fans at Eugene’s Hayward Field.

“We’re not only competitors, but we really are brothers and we have a great time together out there,” Duplantis said. “To see them embrace me like that after doing a jump, breaking a world record, I’m thankful. I just feel very thankful.”

Earlier in the day, Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay broke the world record in the 5,000 meters, finishing in 14:00.21.

Tsegay bested the record of 14:05.20 set by Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon earlier this year in Paris. Tsegay’s finish was nearly 12 seconds better than her personal best. Kenyan Beatrice Chebet was runner-up in 14:05.92.

Afterward, the 26-year-old Tsegay vowed to try to go under 14 minutes next year: “Yes, I try,” she said.

The Prefontaine Classic, normally run in late May, was this year’s final stop on the international Diamond League circuit. The 32 champions crowned during the two-day meet earned $30,000 apiece.

It was the last major international track and field competition before the athletes begin gearing up for the Paris Olympics next summer.

Canadian Andre De Grasse, the 200-meter champion at the Tokyo Olympics, won the event Sunday in 19.76 seconds to cap his season. World champion Shericka Jackson of Jamaica won on the women’s side in 21.57 for her second Prefontaine title of the weekend.

Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen won his second title with a victory in the 3,000. In a photo finish with Ethiopia’s Yomif Kejelcha, Ingebrigtsen crossed the line first in 7:23.63.

American Joe Kovacs had a monster throw of 22.93 meters (75 feet, 2 3/4 inches) in the men’s shot put, ahead of native Oregonian and world record holder Ryan Crouser.

Crouser was diagnosed with blood clots in his left leg just before winning the shot put at the world track and field championships last month in Budapest. He’s been on medication to shrink the clots.

“Super happy with the season. Had a lot of adversity this year that really wasn’t planned — not that it ever is,” Crouser said. “Wasn’t expecting the issues that I had but I feel like I battled through it really well. I was overall really happy today with my performance.”

American Athing Mu won the 800 in 1:54.97, a new national and meet record. Marileidy Paulino of the Dominican Republic won the 400 in 49.58.

Femke Bol of the Netherlands won the title in the 400 hurdles in 51.98, while Tobi Amusan of Nigeria won the 100 hurdles in 12.33.

Among the men, Emmanuel Wanyonyi of Kenya won the 800 meters in a meet record 1:42.80. Canadian Marco Arop finished second in 1:42.85, a new national record. Arop bested Wanyonyi at the world championships.

Jamaican Hansle Parchment defeated three-time world champion Grant Holloway in the 110 meters, finishing in 12.93.

Ukrainian Yaroslava Mahuchikh claimed gold in the high jump. Afterward she said it was important to show the resilience of the Ukrainians as the war with Russia continues.

“I’m happy that I have the opportunity to compete and show all the world that we are strongest, we are from Ukraine,” she said.

The two-day event opened Saturday. Among the winners were American Christian Coleman in the men’s 100 meters and Jackson in the women’s event. Ingebrigtsen won the Bowerman mile, an event unique to the Prefontaine Classic, in a blistering 3:43.73.

Image credits: AP

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