17 May 2020

Olympic champion Katerina Stefanidi takes gold in women's 'garden pole vault challenge'

Defending Olympic champion Katerina Stefanidi has won the inaugural women's edition of ‘the garden pole vault challenge’.

The 30-year-old Greek, who took the top spot at the Rio games in 2016, completed 34 successful jumps at four metres in the two allocated 15-minute stints.

Her competitors, America's Katie Nageotte and Canada's Alysha Newman, managed 30 and 21 jumps respectively from their attempts.

All three athletes were competing from their local tracks in their home countries.

"My arms were so tired at the end, " joked Stefanidi following her victory.

Two weeks ago, France's Renaud Lavillenie and Sweden's Armand Duplantis both managed 36 clear jumps over a five-metre bar from the comfort of their own gardens while strict lockdown restrictions remained in place.

Asked whether she would be willing to take on her male counterparts, Stefanidi replied: “I would do it, but I'll need three weeks to recover.

"The men were competing 1.2m below their personal bests while we were competing 90cm below ours, so we'd have to adjust the heights. 

"But yes, give me three weeks and I'll do it."

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