Mondo Climbs Higher Yet, Raises World Junior Record to 19-5½

A soaring Duplantis had plenty of air on his record clearance. (BRYAN WAYNE)

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, May 05—Mondo Duplantis (Lafayette, Louisiana) doesn’t have any peers at the State HS level. Come to think of it, he doesn’t have any peers at the national level either. Either this year or all-time.

So far above the competition was he at this year’s State meet that he passed no fewer than 13 (!) heights to open the competition.

Once he (finally) got into the jumping, he cleared 17-10½ (5.45) on his second attempt, racked up yet another 19-footer (19-1/5.82 for the =No. 5 prep mark ever) on his first attempt, then also upped his own World Junior & HS Records with another first-try make at 19-5½ (5.93). (IAAF ratification of the former is apparently a non-starter because of the understandable lack of pro-level drug-testing at the meet.)

“I wasn’t supposed to jump 19-5 today, but I had to,” Duplantis told Robin Fambrough of the Acadiana Advocate. “The plan was to take 2 jumps. I only took 4 jumps, but when it’s at that high of a level, it takes a toll on your body. I had to do it.”

Father Greg explained, “He was trying to conserve energy for the 100, and the plan was for him to not take a lot of jumps. I said, ‘I think you can jump 19-feet. I wanted him to jump 19-feet and then quit. But he said, ‘No, I feel too good.’ ”
He ended up only 8th in the 100 at 10.74w after having won his Regional at an impressive 10.57w.

The Regional marked the second straight meet in the State-Q process where Duplantis cleared 15-0 from a mere 3 lefts in order to advance. □