GLASGOW: Sweden’s Armand Duplantis set a world pole vault record of 6.18 meters at an indoor meeting in Glasgow on Saturday (Sunday in Manila), adding one centimetre to the record he set in Poland last week.
Duplantis, who won silver at last year’s world championships in Doha, cleared the bar with something to spare and won a world record bonus cheque for $30,000.
The old record of 6.16m set by French vaulter Renaud Lavillenie had stood since 2014 until Duplantis broke it last Saturday in Torun, Poland.
Duplantis, known by his nickname “Mondo”, did a lap of the track signing autographs in Glasgow.
“There are so many things that go into this, so many years of hard work,” he said. “It’s really complicated but I guess when you’re doing it right it seems simple.
“I feel good on the runway, I feel fast, I feel strong and I feel I am working the poles I have really well. I’m excited for the outdoor season. The Olympics is the biggest thing that a track and field athlete can compete in and that is when I want to have my best competition this season.
“It is a good start but that’s where I want to be the best.”
Duplantis opened on Saturday at 5.50m and got over 5.75m on his second try. Two-time world champion Sam Kendricks led at that point, but the US athlete exited the competition at the next height, 5.84m.
The 20-year-old sailed over on his first attempt. With no one else left in the competition, he then flew over 6m.
Duplantis had the bar moved up to 6.18m and one attempt was all he needed.
The pole vaulter was born in the United States to American father and coach Greg — himself a former pole vaulter who cleared 5.80m — and Swedish heptathlete mother Helena.
Duplantis’ performances mark him out as a clear favorite for the Olympic title in Tokyo later this year.
He claimed silver at October’s World Athletics Championships in Doha behind Hendricks just months after turning professional.
Duplantis credits a new fitness drive with success on the same pole he used in the Qatari capital.
“These meets are important to get a lot of technical things done and sort out the little details to have that perfect jump at the right time,” Duplantis said.
“I take each meet at a time and try to go 110 percent and hopefully the results show.”
In the pole vault, athletics’ governing body no longer makes any distinction between indoor and outdoor records.