Pole-vaulter Ernest John “EJ” Obiena continued his excellent showing with a record-breaking 5.61meters performance in the recently concluded Stabhochsprung Classic in Leberkusen, Germany.
The Southeast Asian Games-bound Obiena shattered his own record of 5.55m, which he accomplished during the 78th Singapore Open Championships in April 29 last year.
The 21-year old pole-vaulter cleared the bar in just his first attempt but finished fourth in the competition.
Menno Vloon of the Netherlands topped the event followed by Shawn Barber (5.76 meters) of Canada and Arnaud Art of Belgium that finished second and third, respectively with identical 5.71 scores.
“I believe all the hard work that we have put in is slowly showing results. I just hope I will be able to maintain or even improve on this level of performance at the SEA Games,” said Obiena.
Obiena is also coming off an impressive 5.50m performance during the Asian Athletics Championships in India last month.
Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association president Philip Ella Juico, meanwhile, is elated with Obiena’s performance and is hoping all the good for the national athletics team in the SEA Games.
“We are hoping to equal or surpass our medal harvest from the 2015 Singapore SEA Games. God willing and with the right strategy and discipline, we can do it,” said Juico.
The Philippines finished fourth overall (5 golds, 7 silvers, and 9 bronzes) in athletics during the 2015 Singapore SEA Games.