Athletics

Mondo Duplantis on pushing boundaries 

Pole vault world record holder Mondo Duplantis is the clear favourite at his first European Indoor Championships. 

By Sven Busch ·

Mondo Duplantis does not does not want to put limits on himself.

On the contrary.

"I always try to push the boundaries to what is possible. You do not have to be 26 or 27 years old to jump over six metres. I think it's important that people see that you can do it at any age," said the 21-year-old pole vault world record holder in a press conference in Sweden ahead of his debut at the European Indoor Championships this weekend in Torun, Poland.

Clearing six metres is almost standard for the Swedish high flyer who has been over this height in three of his four competitions this season.

Last week Duplantis soared over 6.10m in Belgrade to set a world lead and to establish himself as the clear favourite to win gold in the competition on Sunday,

"I want to jump as high as possible, my goal is the gold," said Duplantis,

"I'm where I want to be in shape. I feel ready to drive."

That is not good news for his rivals London 2012 Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie is keen on pushing Duplantis as he is seeking his fifth EURO indoor title. The former world record record holder is in stellar form judging by his 6.06m win in Clermont Ferrand last Saturday, his best clearance since 2014.

"This is perhaps the first time that I am an outsider at this competition", Lavillenie told L'Equipe. "But the outsider with 6.06m? That is incredible."

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Duplantis has good memories of Torun. He set his first world record there last year when he vaulted 6.17m to break Lavillenie's almost six year old indoor world record. A week later, on 15 February in Glasgow, he improved the record to 6.18m.

"It feels like coming home. Torun is a special place for me," said Duplantis who has not lost since the 2019 World Championships in Doha, where he finished in second place behind American Sam Kendricks.

Here are five things you did not know about the Duplantis.