Olympic champion pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis begins season with a world-leading mark

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Olympic champion and world record-holder Armand Duplantis aka ‘Mondo Duplantis’, competing in his eponymous meetings here, got his 2023 campaigns off to strong starts with performances that took them straight to the top of the world lists.

Duplantis, competing at the Mondo Classic, won the pole vault with a Swedish indoor all-comers’ record of 6.10m on Thursday night.

The event featured 10 of the best pole vaulters in the world, including Rio 2016 champion Thiago Braz of Brazil, who also won bronze in Tokyo.

Duplantis opened his series with a first-time clearance at 5.67m and followed it with another successful jump at 5.82m. Four other men – USA’s KC Lightfoot, Ernest John Obiena of the Philippines, Australia’s Kurtis Marschall, and Norway’s Pal Haugen Lillefosse – cleared that height and progressed on to 5.91m.

The world and Olympic champion registered his first foul of the evening at 6.00m but got over on his second try. Lightfoot and Obiena were unable to go higher than 5.91m, leaving Duplantis to move the bar up to 6.10m. After two misses, the Swede pole vaulter got over it on his third attempt, adding six centimeters to the meeting record he established last year.

He ended with three attempts at a would-be world record height of 6.22m, all of which were unsuccessful, but he was nevertheless satisfied with his winning height of 6.10m — not just his best-ever season opener, but the highest season-opening performance of any pole vaulter in history.

“I’m happy with the result,” he told Swedish broadcaster SVT after the event. “I’m happy to get over 6.10m. I got the juices flowing on that last attempt. I was happy to do this in Uppsala because I know that a lot of people came out to watch me.”

The 23-year-old Swedish pole vaulter has a breakthrough season in 2022, during which he set three world records, won two global titles, won 18 of his 19 competitions, and vaulted six meters or higher 23 times.

He was also named the World Athlete of the Year at the World Athletics Awards 2022 in December.

Duplantis is a current world outdoor and indoor record holder, the Olympic and World outdoor and indoor champion, the European outdoor and indoor champion, and the Diamond League champion.

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