Russia's Yelena Isinbayeva has set a new world record in women's pole vault as she cleared 5.03 metres at the Golden League meeting in Rome, spurred on by the 4.92-metre jump from American Jennifer Stuczynski a week earlier.
Russia's Yelena Isinbayeva, who on Friday set a new women's pole vault world record, said it was competition from American newcomer Jenn Stuczynski that had inspired her to the new milestone.
Speaking 24 hours after clearing 5.03 metres at the Golden League in Rome, Isinbayeva told how fear of losing her long-time No.1 status to the 26-year-old New Yorker had driven her to work harder in training.
"When Stuczynski jumped 4.90 then 4.92 (at the US Olympic trials on July 6) it made me so angry because everyone started to say: 'Isinbayeva is finished, we have a new star'," the Russian said.
"It made me angry and I am happy for that feeling because I hadn't felt it enough since my last world record."
Friday's landmark vault was no less than Isinbayeva's 22nd world record, at two centimetres above the best she achieved when she won gold at the 2005 world championship in Helsinki.
The 26-year-old reigning Olympic champion added that the feat was a result of mastering a new technique.
"Today I feel happy inside - so, so happy," she said. "Today I feel like the previous Isinbayeva.
"Before I was full of problems, but after changes in my technique, my personal life, my coach, my life generally, I think I am stronger now in my personal condition.
"I run faster, I long jump longer but, more important, inside I feel so happy, so calm."
Isinbayeva is now determined to uphold a challenge she made to Ukrainian Sergey Bubka, the legendary men's pole vault record holder, to better his figure of 35 world records.
"My goal is to jump 36 world records," she said confidently.
Isinbayeva will now compete in Stockholm, London and Monaco and then train with the Swedish national team in Japan before the defence of her Olympic gold medal in Beijing.
Date created : 2008-07-13