Watch out for Duplantis

It feels like the job is not finished yet. I’ll try to attack these last two meets hard.

BRUSSELS, Belgium (AFP) — Armand “Mondo” Duplantis has had a startling season by anyone’s standards, sealing two world titles by twice improving the pole vault world record.

But the United States-born Swede, still just 22, warned ahead of Friday’s Diamond League meet in Brussels that motivation was not a problem and that he was “still hungry.”

Duplantis is currently streets ahead of his rivals, the Olympic champion having vaulted 6.20 meters to win the world indoor title in Belgrade in March before rounding off the world outdoor
championships in Oregon in July with an incredible vault of 6.21 meters, the current world record.

“The shape feels good, I have two more competitions, here and in Zurich” for the 7 and 8 September finals of the Diamond League, the elite one-day track and field circuit.

“The motivation is still there. I’m hungry and there are still some things I want to do.”

“It feels like the job is not finished yet. I’ll try to attack these last two meets hard. I think I’m capable of something good.”

Duplantis, however, was quick to play down any belief that each time he took to the track, it could be to better his world record.

“There are a lot of things that have to line up to be able to attempt something like a world record,” he said.

“It’s not an every-day thing you can do on repeat.”

“It’s a combination of a lot of things. First of all you have to be in the right shape — you have to be ready for it physically and mentally.”

Another factor is the weather. “It’s really tough with speed and rhythm on the runway if there’s wind,” he said.

Any record attempt, Duplantis added, would be based on “game-time decisions.”

The vaulter’s outing in Brussels last year saw him fail in his bid to better his own then-world record of 6.18m.

As a slight chill settled in at the King Baudouin stadium, Duplantis was forced to don his tracksuit as technical officials struggled to raise the bar.


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