There is indeed a life despite the Covid! Last May, during what is now known as the “first confinement”, Renaud Lavillenie, Sam Kendricks and Armand Mondo Duplantis had offered themselves a competition at a distance, in a garden in Clermont-Ferrand, Louisiana or Mississippi. Nine months later, their confrontation is no longer virtual and it is already reaching new heights.
While Renaud Lavillenie had achieved the best world performance of the season, last Sunday in Tourcoing with a jump to 6.02 m, Mondo Duplantis (6.01 m last weekend) replied on Saturday by crossing 6.03 m, on the occasion of the Rouen stage of the Perche elite tour. Even without an audience (the loud music in the Kindarena ensures the show), the competition took off, since, extremely rare, four pole vaulters attempted a bar at 6.03 m. The now unmissable Mondo Duplantis – Renaud Lavillenie – Sam Kendricks trio, as well as a surprise guest, the American Christopher Nilsen. The Swede was the only one to cross the height – he then tackled, in vain, his own world record (6, 18 m) – Renaud Lavillenie finished 2 nd in the competition, with a jump to 5, 93, This is the 4th race in a row this winter above 5.90m (5.92m, in Bordeaux; 5.95m in Karlsruhe; 6.02m in Tourcoing).
A second youth
“I had trouble running to the end, I think I had not recovered from last weekend, explains Lavillenie, author of an extremely clean competition since he managed 5, 60; 5, 83 m and 5, 93 m each time on his 1st attempt. I have to find some rhythm with big bars, which I was no longer used to ”. Before his 6.02m Tourcoing, his last competition at 6m was in March 2017. Since he has settled his physical problems, Renaud Lavillenie has given himself a second youth at 34 years old.
“Frankly, there are no big regrets to be had on this competition, even if I would have liked to go back 6 m. It’s only February, we have the chance to compete, so much to savor. We keep our fingers crossed that there are others, but there are other priorities in the world right now. We top athletes are privileged, let’s take advantage of the chance we have. “
The magical trio Duplantis – Lavillenie – Kendricks will meet again on Tuesday in Liévin.
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr