This is a piece on Mondo Duplantis, written by Larry Eder, who is the joint winner, along with Jakob Ingebrigtsen, of the 2022 European Athletics Men’s Athlete of the Year, but was unable to attend the Golden Tracks Award ceremony in Tallinn, Estonia this past weekend.
There have been a few geniuses in the event of the pole vault. Sergey Bubka, Renaud Lavillenie, and now, Mondo Duplantis. Mondo has the physical skills, and the work ethic needs to excel. Mondo, like his predecessors, is as drawn to the audience as they are to him.
Mondo Duplantis is the co-winner of the European Athletics Athlete of the Year, which he shares with Jakob Ingebrigtsen.
Mondo Duplantis won the World Championships with a new World record of 6.21 meters. The Swedish superstar ended the World Championships on a world record note. His jump of 6.21 meters set a new world record and had the 22,000 fans in the new Hayward Field on their feet.
Mondo Duplantis is fascinating to watch in the act of competition. Mondo had pretty good conditions at the World Championships, and he was really fit. He wanted a big jump. He wanted to showcase the pole vault.
After his WR jump, the pleased Mondo Duplantis had this to say about his competition in Eugene, Oregon;
“I do not want to take too many jumps, so I just wanted to make it safe to the final. First of all, I want to win.
That is the most important thing. If I am able to jump high, then I would jump high. That would be nice, but the gold is the most important for me now. I managed to save some energy for the final. I am feeling good, I cannot complain, and I am ready for the final. Honestly, I am pretty used to coming to the competitions like a favorite already.
It has been like that for the past two years. It is what it is, and I am not trying to think about it too much and just get there and jump to show what I am capable of.”
Mondo has been a lifelong pole vaulter. Well almost. He began vaulting at five years of age. The video below shows him vaulting from five to about sixteen.
Mondo Duplantis has had the thoughtful guidance from his father, Greg Duplantis (a pole vaulter who won Pre Classic in 1993), and his mother, Helena, a former Swedish heptathlete.
Mondo’s development into the finest pole vaulter in the world has taken most of his young life. In meeting him in 2017, he seemed like a pretty typical teenager who just happened to be incredibly talented in the pole vault. Mondo has a huge work ethic, loves competition, and loves the entertainment part of his job.
PUMA recognized his talent and his fanbase and has signed the Swedish pole vaulter to a global sports contract. Mondo Duplantis is a global sports superstar.
His wins at the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games, then the World Indoor this past spring, and the World Outdoor this past summer just built on his status in the sport. In trying conditions, his win at the European championships was probably not the height that he had so desired, but Mondo set a new Championship record in Munich of 6.06 meters.
Of the crazy conditions, Mondo noted:
“Coming to the stadium, somebody told me there was a rainbow, but I did not see it. It is super beautiful. I wish I saw it. Honestly, it was a great evening. Considering the situation and circumstances, I cannot complain. It was very special for me today. I just focused on winning, I guess. Sometimes you have to get over the bar first, and then you can celebrate and not before. I take everything step by step, and I take whatever comes. You need the things to really go your way to have something to work out the way they should. Sometimes you can get very unlucky with all kinds of things, but I am glad everything worked out the way it did tonight.
I think this season, I have experienced all kinds of situations and these championships were very special to me. The crowd was exceptional; it is a special place here. The place where I will go when this is over? Maybe a couple of days in Italy, it is a kind of a fun place. And then I will see, I want to spend the time with the closest ones, and we will see.”
After such a long season, where Mondo Duplantis competed nineteen times, almost touching the sky, his joint AOY from European Athletes was a good accolade. His level of superiority? Winning eighteen of 19 competitions and clearing six meters FIFTEEN times in 2022.
A while back, on an Athletics Chat, Stuart Weir, senior European writer for RunBlogRun, asked me how many times would Mondo go over six meters? I was not sure, but believed that Mondo would set at least 34-45 world records in the pole vault in his career.
Mondo Duplantis, enjoy the break. We look forward to seeing you in Budapest 2023 (World Champs), and perhaps in Istanbul 2023 (European Indoor Champs).