USATF Men’s Pole Vault — A Repeat For Nilsen

It took only a modest 18-8¼ for Chris Nilsen to win for the second time in a row. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

AS MOST ANTICIPATED, Chris Nilsen prevailed, winning with three first-attempt clearances in defending his national title.

That may have been the only predictable part of a competition that began with the news that 2-time reigning world champion Sam Kendricks —owner of a Wild Card — wouldn’t start.

The winning height of 18-8¼ (5.70) was surprisingly low, but Nilsen’s last remaining challenger was even more eye-opening in unheralded Luke Winder. And the meet ended with a rare administrative jumpoff for the third spot.

Seven of the 16 starters owned the WC standard of 19-¼ (5.80), and all were among the 14 who advanced after the opening height of 18-½ (5.50).

One casualty came at 18-4½ (5.60), a height that claimed NCAA runner-up Clayton Fritsch, who owned the WC standard.

The real carnage came at 18-8¼ (5.70), where Zach McWhorter, Matt Ludwig, Jacob Wooten, Andrew Irwin and KC Lightfoot — all with the WC standard — were among the 7 ending their day. Lightfoot and Ludwig were members of last year’s Olympic team with Nilsen.

That left two: Nilsen, with a clean record and Winder, who had cleared his second-straight bar with a third-attempt make.

Both passed 18-10¼ (5.75), Winder’s PR, for a chance at 19-¼ (5.80). Neither was able to clear, although Winder’s first and Nilsen’s final attempt were close.

Still, competition continued as there was a tie for 3rd between Wooten and Irwin. The rules only require tie-breaking for 1st, but for administrative purposes of ascertaining national-team priority they continued on with Irwin winning with a 18-8¼ (5.70) that won’t appear on any lists.

However, with Winder lacking both a Q-standard and a high WA ranking, it appears that Irwin and Wooten will both be on the team with Nilsen and Kendricks.

“The goal today was to come in and make the team,” Nilsen said. The Olympic silver medalist said he’s hoping for a top-5 finish at the upcoming Worlds. “I’ve got to clean up some stuff in my technique and I got to get healthy and eat good food.”


MEN’S POLE VAULT RESULTS

(June 25)

1. Chris Nilsen (Nik) 18-8¼ (5.70);

2. Luke Winder (unat) 18-8¼;

=3. Andrew Irwin (unat) 18-4½ (5.60);

=3. Jacob Wooten (unat) 18-4½;

=5. KC Lightfoot (Puma) 18-4½;

=5. Matt Ludwig (unat) 18-4½;

=7. Zach Bradford (Ks) 18-4½;

=7. Tray Oates (unat) 18-4½;

9. Zach McWhorter (BYU) 18-4½; 10. tie, Nathan Richartz (Tracksm) & Keaton Daniel (Ky) 18-½ (5.50); 12. Scott Houston (Shore) 18-½; 13. tie, Clayton Fritsch (SHous) & Austin Miller (Vaulth) 18-½;… nh— Deakin Volz (unat), Carson Waters (unat).

18-½ 18-4½ 18-8¼ 18-10¼ 19-¼ 19-2¼ 19-4¼
Daniel o xxx
McWhorter o xxo xxx
Bradford xxo o xxx
Ludwig xo o xxx
Nilsen o o o ppp xxx
Waters xxx
Houston xo xxx
Volz xxx
Wooten o o xxx
Irwin o o xxx
Lightfoot xo o xxx
Winder o xxo xxo ppp xxx
Miller xxo xxx
Walsh dnc
Oates xxo o xxx
Fritsch xxo xxx
Kendricks dnc
Richartz o xxx
5.50 5.60 5.70 5.75 5.80 5.85 5.90

Subscription Options

Monthly Subscription
(Digital Only)

  • Access to Current Articles
  • Access to Current Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach

$7.95 every 1 month (recurring)

Annual Subscription
(Digital Only)

  • Access to Current Articles
  • Access to Current Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach

$79 every 1 year (recurring)

Monthly Premium Archive
(Digital Only)

  • Unlimited Articles
  • Access to Archived Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach

$12.95 every 1 month (recurring)

Annual Premium Archive
(Digital Only)

  • Unlimited Articles
  • Access to Archived Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach

$128 every 1 year (recurring)

Annual Subscription
(Digital + Print)

  • Access to Current Articles
  • Access to Current Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach
  • 12 Monthly Print Issues

$109.00 USA every year (recurring)
$157.00 Canada every year (recurring)
$207.00 Foreign every year (recurring)

Annual Premium Archive
(Digital + Print)

  • Unlimited Articles
  • Access to Archived Issues
  • eTrack Results Newsletter
  • Unlimited Content from our Technique Journal, Track Coach
  • 12 Monthly Print Issues

$158.00 USA every year (recurring)
$206.00 Canada every year (recurring)
$256.00 Foreign every year (recurring)

Annual Subscription
(Print Only)

  • 12 Monthly Print Issues
  • Does not include online access or eTrack Results Newsletter

$79.00 USA every year (recurring)
$127.00 Canada every year (recurring)
$177.00 Foreign every year (recurring)

Track Coach
(Digital Only)

  • Track Coach Quarterly Technique Journal
  • Access to Track Coach Archived Issues

Note: Track Coach is included with all Track & Field News digital subscriptions. If you are a current T&FN subscriber, purchase of a Track Coach subscription will terminate your existing T&FN subscription and change your access level to Track Coach content only. Track & Field News print only subscribers will need to upgrade to a T&FN subscription level that includes digital access to read Track Coach issues and articles online.

$19.95 every 1 year (recurring)