This topic contains 19 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  SlowMo 1 year, 1 month ago.

Viewing 20 posts - 1 through 20 (of 20 total)
  • Author
  • #65963


    This looks very much a rerun of Rio. There are a few missing faces – Fabiana Muhrer, Alana Boyd and Martina Strutz, all retired. Other personnel, form and prospects do not seem to have changed a lot. Main points of interest for me are whether the NZ youngster Eliza McCartney (20) can topple Ekaterina Stefanidi, and from a GB point of view whether Holly Bradshaw can break into the medals. I surprised myself by concluding that she could but probably only on count-back as the struggle for silver and bronze should be tight.

    The result –

    1. 4.85 Stefanidi
    2. 4.80 McCartney
    3. 4.75 Morris
    4. 4.75 Bradshaw
    5. 4.75 Buchler
    6. 4.70 Suhr
    7. 4.70 Sidorova
    8. 4.65 Silva
    9. 4.65 Newman
    10.4.65 Bengtsson
    11.4.60 Ryzih
    12.4.60 Mullina

    Other possible finalists all in the 4.50-4.55 range – Peinado (19), Newell, LeLeux, Meijer, Spiegelburg, Ptacnikova, Sutej.
    (In the actual final they will be going up 10cm at a time until around 4.80)

    Beijing 2015 Result
    1. 4.90 (3) Silva (pre SB 4.91 August)
    2. 4.85 (1) Murer
    3. 4.80 (1) Kiriaopoulou
    4. 4.70 (1) Bentsson (pre SB 4.70i March)
    5. 4.70 (1) Morris (pre SB 4.76 July)
    6. 4.70 (1) Suhr (pre SB 4.82 June)
    7. 4.70 (1) Bradshaw (pre SB 4.50 June)
    8. 4.60 (1) Strutz
    9. 4.60 (1) Ling
    10. 4.60 (1) Nikkanen
    11. 4.60 (2) Boyd
    12. 4.60 (3) Ryzih (pre SB 4.70 July, 4.72i March)
    13. NH Sidorova (pre SB 4.79 July, 4.80i March)
    14. NH Meijer (pre SB 4.52 July, 4.55i March)
    (Qualification reached 4.55)

    Rio 2016 Result
    1. 4.85 (2) Stefanidi (pre SB 4.86 June)
    2. 4.85 (2) Morris (pre SB 4.93 July, 4.95i March)
    3. 4.80 (1) McCartney (pre SB 4.80 March)
    4. 4.80 (2) Boyd
    5. 4.70 (1) Bradshaw (pre SB 4.65 July)
    6. 4.70 (1) Buchler (pre SB 4.78 May, 4.80i March)
    7. 4.60 (2) Silva (pre SB 4.84 June)
    8. 4.60 (2) Suhr (pre SB 4.82 April, 5.03i Jan)
    9. 4.60 (3) Strutz
    10. 4.50 (1) Ryzih (pre SB 4.73 July)
    11. 4.50 (2) Sutej (pre SB 4.56 June)
    12. 4.50 (3) Ahbe
    (Qualification 4.60 automatic + some 4.55)

    The pre SB distance (the best achieved that season up to the championship) when compared with the result gives an idea about which athletes peak and perform well when it matters most and which do not.
    In fact Holly Bradshaw was the only athlete to beat her season’s best in the championship, and she did it in both years. This may be the typical profile of the best GB athletes who do not have to worry about selection only needing to peak once for the championships. Stefanidi, McCartney and Bengtsson were notable for performing up to their SBs, whereas the two Americans, Morris and Suhr didn’t. These are crude measures of form because the athlete may have gone close to clearing the next height which is 10cm higher.
    Example – 4.85 (2) means cleared 4.85m at the second attempt.

    Odds on favourite at 4/6 with the bookies. Which is not surprising as she appears, on the face of it, to be as bombproof as you are likely to get in the Pole Vault. Unbeaten in 10 competitions since February. Dominant in the DLs in Doha, Rome and London. Six times over 4.80m and showing no signs of deteriorating since winning the Olympic title in Rio. However she has only bettered 4.85 twice despite a lot of attempts and must be vulnerable to a 4.90 vault.
    4.80+ very likely/4.85 probable/4.90 unlikely

    The obvious second favourite, 5/2. Sandi Morris has improved rapidly over the last five years. She reached a 5.00m peak in Brussels in September 2016, after losing out on countback to Stefanidi in Rio. Her 2017 DL results have been mixed – 2nd Doha (4.75), 6th Rome (4.55), 4th London (4.65) – and she has been at a generally lower level compared to 2016 which saw her clear 4.93, 4.95 and 5.00m. In 2017 4.84 in May and 4.80 in the US Trials have been her best. In both 2015 and 2016 she vaulted better in July than she did in August when it mattered more. If that pattern is repeated in 2017 she will not be World Champion.
    4.75 looks likely/4.80 good chance/5.00 capable but v.unlikely

    World Junior record (4.64) in 2015. Won Bronze in Rio. Still only 20.
    Coming from New Zealand must pose problems of competition and preparation.
    So her progress and form must be considered with that in mind, by which I mean she is probably going to be better than she has been able to show! Progressed through early 2016 to 4.80 in March. Slow start to N.Hemisphere summer but 3rd in London (4.62) before 3rd in the Olympics (4.80). More progress early 2017 with 4.82 in February. 3rd Rome 4.75 (3) followed by three fails at 4.85.
    Patchy form this summer due to an achilles problem, which caused her to miss the London DL and she competed two weeks later at a small Belgian meeting 4.61 (1). Hard to know what to expect but capable of winning if fully fit. The fact that she is competing suggests she will be close to her best, at least.
    4.80 good chance/4.85 possible?

    Olympic Champion 2012. Now 35 but still operating at a very high level, though all the highest vaults are indoors. 4.83 outdoors in April shows she is still a contender. 2nd in Trials (4.65).
    4.65 likely/4.70 good chance/4.80 absolute max

    World Champion 2015. Looks to have peaked 2013-15 and to now be on the downhill.
    2nd Rome 4.75(1), 1st Oslo 4.81(1), 5th Stockholm and London both 3 fails at 4.65.
    4.60 v.likely/4.75 possible/4.80 unlikely

    6th Olympics 2012, 7th WC 2015, 5th Olympcs 2016
    4.80 & 4.81 this year in small competitions.
    Only 4.40 & 4.55 in DLs.
    Seems best indoors and when there is little pressure on her but her major championship record is far from poor. Perhaps public disappointment when the 4.87i was followed by no outdoor titles and due to her neurotic moments she is now under-appreciated. If conditions are still it will help. Or someone could nick the wind streamer which seems to make her lose focus and become indecisive. Constantly seeking advice from the coach is another irritant. Her form in those two minor meetings and the trend to do better in the championships than the rest of the season would, if repeated, lead to a medal. But will it though?
    4.60+ v.likely/4.70 probable/4.80 quite unlikely

    Euopean titles 2014/15. Steady imrovement possibly continuing.
    2016 best 4.85(2) in NC (dubious?)
    2017 best 2nd Oslo 4.75(1), 1st GSpike 4.70(3)
    4.65 v likely/4.70 good chance/4.80 unlikely

    Minor European medalist. Beijing 2015 12th 4.60(3). Rio 2016 10th 4.50(1).
    Plateaued 2014-2017
    4.50 v.likely/4.60 probable/4.70 unlikely

    Now 33 but she has advanced a National Record every year for a decade. Can she do it again?
    A tough and consistent performer not to be underestimated.
    2016 6th in Rio Olympics 4.70(1). 4.77 and 4.78 in DLs.
    2017 1st Stockholm DL 4.65 (1), 2nd London DL 4.73 (2).
    4.55 v.likely/4.70 probable/4.80 v.unlikely

    23 years old. Rapid improvement last two years.
    2016 4.61 best
    2017 4.71(3) in April. 7th Doha, 5th Oslo 4.55 (3), 2nd GSpike 4.65 (3).
    4.50 v.likely/4.65 good chance/4.70 unlikely

    24 years old.
    2015 Beijing qualified 6th. NH final.
    2016 European Champs 5th 4.55(2), Rio Olympics 17q.
    2017 3rd London DL 4.65 (2)
    Improving and a good competitor, so not to be discounted. Has been making attempts at 4.70-4.75.
    4.55 likely/4.60 probable/4.70 unlikely

    World Junior Champion 2010 and 2012.
    4th Beijing 2015 4.70(1).
    Still only 24 but has plateaued after an exceptional 2015.
    2017 best Stockholm DL 4.65 (1)
    4.55 v.likely/4.65 good chance/4.70 unlikely

    2017 good competitions at Hengelo, Luzern and Madrid suggest she is a strong consistent performer perhaps ready to take the next step up. No major championship experience.
    4.60 probable

    Baby of the event at 19 year old.
    World Youth Champion 2013. Silver World Juniors 2016. 23q at Beijing 2015. DNS at Rio.
    2017 3rd GSpike 4.55 (3), 2nd Madrid 4.48 (1), 3rd Stockholm 4.65 (2)
    4.55 likely/4.60 chance/4.65 unlikely

    • This topic was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by  SlowMo.


    Thanks, @laps. Here’s my thoughts, not as detailed or analytical as yours:

    Katerina Stefanidi – she has the winning feeling and confidence of 2 European titles in the last year to go with her Olympic title. Unbeaten this year and very consistent heights.

    Sandi Morris – hasn’t really hit the heights consistently so far this year but I haven’t seen her complaining or unhappy about this. I suspect it’s been in the plan to be only vaulting 4.70-ish but then really peak for London.

    Eliza McCartney – vaulted 4.82 in NZ back in February but has tailed off since. I suspect that 2017 will be a post-Olympics letdown year for her.

    Holly Bradshaw – I wonder if she’s coming in a bit undercooked with so few high-level competitions under her belt.

    Despite there being a good number of women snapping at their heels it’s hard for me to see past Stefanidi & Morris for the gold & silver. They’ve got the heights and the medals at global championships. So has Yarisley Silva but the last 2 years haven’t been great for her. Jenn Suhr too but, despite her 5m+ indoors and world indoor title last year, I suspect that her best days on these outdoor occasions are behind her. Stefanidi, whilst not being so far ahead that she could be termed imperious, seems to be on a purple patch.

    Nicole Buchler is coming here in very good form. Having performed well at the last 2 global championships (indoors & out), I’ll take her to step up for the bronze.

    1 Stefanidi 4.85 (4.90 possible but 4.85 much more likely)
    2 Morris 4.85
    3 Buchler 4.70 (4.75 possible if they’re going up in 5cm increments by then, but 4.70 more likely)
    McCartney in the 5-7 range
    Bradshaw in the 6-8 range



    Thanks for your thoughts Luckyspikes. Once I started thinking about the WPv I couldn’t resist giving it the treatment. Agree your conclusions at least as likely as mine. They have to vault 4.90 to beat Stefanidi. Started by thinking that McCartney might do it but the achilles may be her undoing. In Beijing the difference between 4th and 7th was only down to an early failure. London will quite possibly be as tight.
    Holly Bradshaw’s many previous injuries seem to dictate how often she competes and she seems to have adjusted to that so it isn’t a factor any more. I think after six competitions and finishing with 4.81 she is in a good place.



    Bradshaw is one of the most frustrating athletes.

    She first cleared 4.70 6 years ago; she vaulted that in both Rio and Beijing, but has seldom gone any higher in good level comps.

    She’s no longer a promising youngster, but right in her peak years. Is she, relative to the opposition, a better athlete than the one who finished 6th in London?

    She’s only 4cm off the world lead this year, but TBH I largely discount the street events. Laps’ initial assessment is pretty much bang on. Another 6th / 7th I reckon, which is good, but wouldn’t answer many questions. The odds are against, but she’s potentially good enough for a Hitchon style day in the sun.


    Bradshaw is one of the most frustrating athletes.

    You can say that again. That 4.87 indoors in 2012 was phenomenal, but since then she hasn’t capitalised on her obvious talent, while the rest of the world has caught up and overtaken her. Her aversion to competition over what should have been prime years of development and experience-gaining is almost as bad as that of Jacko Gill, the alleged NZ shot-putter. Not to be unkind, but it’s not as if the time away from competition has been spent on conditioning – at least not obviously. Other posters have remarked on this over the years.

    I’d love to see her realise all her obvious talent, but at this stage I’m not expecting it.


    You can say that again.

    Oh OK, then. Bradshaw is definitely THE most frustrating British athlete.

    Thing is, that 4.87 was indoors in neutral conditions. I know some have said the runway might have been slightly springy, but there was no real equivalent of +2.0 following wind or helpful thermals catching a spear. It showed the true extent of her talent.



    Since London 2012 Holly Bradshaw has had a fracture in her back, followed by knee surgery and two Achilles operations. I’m not sure why some posters like to interpret her absences as some kind of aversion to competition.



    You got 10 of the 12 finalists, @laps. Not bad. 😉

    Suhr & Sidorova out. Peinado & Newell in.

    Stefanidi was the only auto-qualifier at 4.60. All the others except Bradshaw, McCartney & Newell cleared 4.55. McCartney & Newell had 3 failures at 4.55. Holly had one vault all night at 4.50 and must have been known she was in a qualifying position before the 4.55 attempts started.

    Morris, Peinado, Bradshaw, Stefanidi and Ryzih all had no failures. Stefanidi also had just one vault.

    Final starting at 7pm on Sunday. Let’s hope there’s a lot more coverage of it than there was tonight (almost non-existent, even on Eurosport.)



    Iaaf may have a stream on either facebook or youtube



    What became of the other Greek vaulter, Kyriakopoulou?



    She was injured last year – maybe still recovering?


    Eliza McCartney – vaulted 4.82 in NZ back in February but has tailed off since. I suspect that 2017 will be a post-Olympics letdown year for her.

    I was down the other end of the stadium but McCartney seemed to be having lots of trouble with a shortened run-up. Continually running in, stopping and going back for another go. Think you are right and that she will make an early exit Sunday night. Should have a good view of the final from Block 147.
    Conditions seemed completely still.

    After qualifying I would be going –
    1. Stefanidi
    2. Morris
    3. Bradshaw or Buchler. 5.70 medal decided on countback.


    What became of the other Greek vaulter, Kyriakopoulou?




    An admin on T&FN has posted the height progression for the final:


    I’ll keep my original medalists and go:
    1 Stefanidi 4.89
    2 Morris 4.82
    3 Buchler 4.75 (on countback)



    It wasn’t a classic, was it?

    Stefanidi was brilliant as she so often is these days but the contest could have done with a couple of 3rd attempt clearances at 4.75 to up the drama quotient.

    Buchler proved to be a bad pick for the medals!

    Peinado though was impressive and seems, so far, to be making the seamless transition to seniors that Bengtsson has struggled with somewhat.



    IAAF has commissioned some technical research at the WCs – preliminary report on the wPV is available with some interesting stuff, particularly about take off location and speed on the runway.



    Great find, larkim.

    The difference in take off angles between Stefanidi (27 deg) and Bradshaw (14) is amazing. Of course one size does not fit all but this kind of analysis will give coaches plenty to ponder. Arguably though Stefanidi might be a bit miffed with the governing body publicising a point of difference which she and her team may have spent ages working out for themselves and refining.

    Other events are also interesting. The data for the 100 quantifies exactly what we saw. Prescod was 0.15 down on Gatlin by 10 and 0.23 behind at half way, but only lost 2 more 100ths over the second half. His top end speed is pretty much already there – 4.35 for the 2nd 100 was equalled by Simbine and only exceeded by Gatlin (4.33) and Bolt (4.31). He was 0.07 ahead of Coleman who ran 9.94.

    Would love to see some analysis of Miller’s performance as he looked visibly different to the others. Likewise, I’d be interested to see what made the difference in the spear.



    Yes thanks Larkim. All the analyses are worth a look.

    Obviously in the PV speed on the runway is good but not what stands out in the data as a factor which sets Stefanidi apart. Interesting that the criticism that Bradshaw gets for being slow is not really born out.



    I couldn’t quite work out the graphic on the take off angles. The stick men clearly show the body positions before and at take off (I think) but I couldn’t work out what the 27deg and 14deg were referring to – is it the angle of the pole at the point of take off (which implies a much higher hold of the pole relative to the torso for Stefanidi)?


    I couldn’t quite work out the graphic on the take off angles. The stick men clearly show the body positions before and at take off (I think) but I couldn’t work out what the 27deg and 14deg were referring to – is it the angle of the pole at the point of take off (which implies a much higher hold of the pole relative to the torso for Stefanidi)?

    Yes I think the way the information is presented is misleading as far as take-off angle is concerned because, as you say, the graphics are just showing the body position at the point of takeoff and immediately after. I think takeoff angle and pole angle are two different things. When you watch Stefanidi she is getting under the pole and closer to the box at takeoff and to some extent the graphic shows the more compact ‘vertical’ position she is getting into.

    There is a Youtube video here that explains takeoff angle in long jump –

    I think it is amazing that in decades of watching pole vault I have never seen anybody on TV explain these sorts of technicalities. On the other hand I have seen Bolt making faces at the camera a billion times.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by  SlowMo.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by  SlowMo.
Viewing 20 posts - 1 through 20 (of 20 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.