Holy Moly I just won a national championship!!! Im pretty sure it still hasnt quite set in but wow, it feels pretty good.
Ill do my best to run you thru it. I wasnt sure quite what to expect here at Drake, the winds are notoriously unpredictable, but we lucked out and probably had the best day ever at Drake stadium, that is why it is so crazy that everyone struggled. There was a kicking tailwind the entire competition, warmups started and i was feeling a little sluggish, my back was feeling much better but was just a little tight, and my legs just felt a little tired. I was able to get things going as warmups went on and had a great jump on my last one and made 18'5" easy. Since it was so hot i decided to not take any more warmup jumps and try to stay out of the heat. I had about a half an hour until my first jump and must have just cooled down a bit because my first time down the runway i was a foot out on my mid and took off around 15ft which is just a bit too far away for me and couldnt really finish the jump. For my next one i made sure i was ready to go and came down and had to cut my jump a bit short to be sure i wouldnt hit the bar going up, since it was only 17'6" i had plenty of room and skyed the bar. The first 2 heights took forever, for whatever reason everyone was struggling, either with their run or pole selection. The bar went up to 5.50m 18', I was 2 in the rotation and my first jump my run was off again, i came down and was way under and had no chance of making the bar, made the adjustment and second time i came down and blew the bar up with an easy make. The next bar was 5.60m 18'5", and there were only 3 people in the competition, myself, Jason Colwick and Derek Miles, I was sitting in 3rd so i knew that these next couple of jumps would be key to where i ended up placing. Jason had passed 5.60 so it was just me and Derek and i was first up. I ran down the runway, and everything was good, my mid and takeoff were right on, I went up, had a great jump and made the bar by about 5 or 6 inches. So at this time i was sitting in first place, but i really thought it would take at least one more bar to win. Derek made it on his second attempt and all three of us passed to 5.70 or 18'8".
I was first up and my first attempt i had a good jump but the pole was just too small, we decided to go up to the next pole on the next try which was a 5m 12.5flex, the biggest pole i had and hadnt jumped on it before. My second attempt i had a really good jump and plenty of height but just came off the pole on the top and hit off on the way up. Neither Derek or Jason had made it yet so i was still sitting in first at this time. Third attempt i got a little amped and pushed myself under and got ripped off the ground and had no chance. So now the agony of waiting for the 2 others to jump, Derek was first, came down and was a bit off on his plant and had no chance, then Jason came down, looked really good off the ground but hit on the way up! I won!!!! How crazy is that. What a great day, I sure wished i couild have jumped higher but a win is a win. In the big competitions like these most of the time its all about who can jump the best on that day, and yesterday it was me.
Always Pursuing -Mark-