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article imageMondo Duplantis talks about 2019 World Championships, NCAA record Special

By Markos Papadatos     Jun 8, 2019 in Sports
On June 7, European champion and world junior record holder Mondo Duplantis chatted with Digital Journal about the 2019 World Championships in Doha and his future plans.
This past May, he broke the collegiate record in the men's pole vault with a six-meter clearance, just in time for Mother's Day. At the same time his older brother, Antoine, secured a three-run homer (Lousiana vs. Arkansas) that gave the Tigers the lead, which helped them win the game. "That felt good. It was a big goal of mine to set a collegiate record, and I was happy I was able to accomplish it," he said.
"That was pretty cool that Antoine's home run and my six-meter clearance happened at the same weekend," he admitted.
This past Wednesday, June 5, Duplantis came in second place at the 2019 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships behind Chris Nilsen. "Chris is a great athlete and we've had a lot of great battles dating all the way back to high school. Going into this meet, I knew Chris was capable of making the 5.95 meter bar. Anything could happen at a championship meet like that. He came out and put a brilliant performance. I had to tip my hat to him," he said.
Duplantis shared that he plans on competing at the 2019 Prefontaine Classic, which will be held in Stanford, California, this year, as opposed to Eugene, Oregon. "There is something that just makes that meet special. It will be a little weird having it at Stanford and not Eugene, but there will be a lot of great athletes there, especially the pole vaulters. Hopefully, we can put on a show. Pole vaulting is a fun event," he said.
He is also excited for the 2019 IAAF World Championships in Doha this fall, which will mark his first time competing in Doha.
On being a pole vaulter in this digital age, Duplantis said, "It's cool. I wouldn't really know any different. Social media is a big part of the modern day. Not everything is perfect about social media but it helps grow the sport and the personalities. I think technology is helpful in connecting with your fans and followers."
He shared that he uses technology for recovery purposes such as NormaTec. Duplantis is coached by his father, Greg Duplantis, a former world-class pole vaulter.
Regarding the best advice he has ever been given, he said, "My dad and I are not trying to change anything, technically, whenever we go to meets. I'm doing the exact same thing that I was doing since I was four or five years old. Now, I am just running faster, I am a lot stronger and I am on bigger poles. It's the same thoughts that go in my mind for the most part. I try to keep everything simple and not think too much while I was on the runway."
For his fans and supporters, Duplantis shared his thankfulness. "I appreciate the support and I wouldn't be here today without everybody that helped me get to this point, especially my family and my friends," he said.
He defined the word success as improvement, and getting better in the sport, whether it's a personal record or "any steps forward in the right direction." "I am still having fun doing this so that is also a success," he said. "I'm having a blast pole vaulting, probably the most fun I've had since I've ever had."
To learn more about teen pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis, follow him on Instagram.
More about mondo duplantis, pole vaulter, World championships, Doha
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