A big wake up vault by Harry Coppell, who just took the national record with an exhilerating 5.85m! Stuart Weir, enjoying the BBC broadcast live (BBC did no show Brussels live), gave us this piece!
New national pole vault record at British Champs
The stand-out performance of day 1 of the Muller British Athletics Championships was the men’s pole vault where Harry Coppell set a new national record of 5.85. To put that in context 5.85 would have taken fourth place in Doha last year and would have been everyone but Duplantis in Brussels tonight. Coppell won the 2019 GB championship with 5.71. His improvement this year has taken him into real world class. He gave notice with two indoor 5.80s earlier this year. His only other outdoor competition this year was the MemoriaÅ‚ Janusza KusociÅ„skiego ten days ago, when he vaulted 5.42. He is coached by Scott Simpson, who also coaches Holly Bradshaw.
He commented afterwards: “An outdoor PB and a British record with 5.85m feels so very special. I don’t think anyone expected it here in Manchester. The last few events here have been bad weather but today has been great, no crowd of course and the new track has been really good.
“I warmed up very well and I wanted to save energy so I was able to skip heights and move on to where I wanted to be. I ended up jumping on my own but it worked out well. The reason for 5.85m (instead of 5.84) was because there is something significant in the world rankings in 5.85. It felt like a marker and it has been a while since a British jumper has been in the world rankings.”
As Coppell said it was one of those odd pole vault competitions when Coppell only entered after everyone else had failed. Jumping consecutively, he kept going until he had the British record. Pole vault is one of the most exciting events in our sport and it is great that Britain has a world-class competitor!