Stockholm Olympic Stadium, Sweden, 16 June 2016.
Round 4 of the Men’s Triple Jump Diamond Race takes place tomorrow night as part of the Stockhom Bauhaus Athletics Meeting. Just 3 points separate the top 2 in this year’s Diamond League event – America’s Christian Taylor and Cuba’s Alexis Copello – and both are present in the Stockholm field.
Despite not breaking 17 metres this season, Copello has been consistently over 16.90m with his best mark of 16.98m in Doha followed by 16.91m in both Eugene and Oslo Diamond League outings. These come after an indoor season where his best mark was 16.99m achieved in Karlsruhe in early February. Now he is within touching distance of Taylor for the Diamond Race lead, Copello will have extra motivation to finally reach over the 17 metre mark in 2016.
After his fantastic 17.76m last round World Lead jump in Eugene, Olympic and World Champion Christian Taylor sat out last week’s Oslo meeting, though he did make an appearance in the Birmingham Diamond League Long Jump competition where he recorded a respectable 7.96m. Taylor has said he has the meeting record of 17.93m, set by 1996 Olympic Champion Kenny Harrison, as his target in Stockholm, but he may need some pressure from others in the field to come close to cutting the sand near that mark.
With the American Olympic Trials just over 3 weeks away, the presence of 3 more American jumpers in the field means that Stockholm could prove a pointer to how things might pan out in Eugene next month. Chris Benard (17.19m in 2016), Omar Craddock (17.15m) and Chris Carter (17.12m) will all look to strike psychological points in Stockholm ahead of the inevitable fireworks at Hayward Field.
Pride of Guyanan athletics, Troy Doris, has leapt a PB of 17.18m in 2016. He came within a centimetre of defeating Christian Taylor at the Bahamas Invitational in April, but could only find 16.48m in Oslo (as did Craddock) so will certainly hope for more this week as part of his Rio preparations.
Nigeria’s Tosin Oke has a recent windy 16.87m to his name this season as well as a legal 16.73m from Doha, matching the mark that took him to 6th at the World Indoor Championships in March. Oke jumped 16.95m for 7th in London 2012 and looks to be threatening to better that mark in Rio especially if he can get his problematic run-up right on the day.
Spain’s Pablo Torrijos finished 7th in Portland with 16.67m durin the winter and has an outdoor best for the year of 16.71m. His lifetime outbest is 16.87m from 2014, but he has cracked the 17 metre mark indoors when taking the Euopean Silver last year with a new National Record of 17.04m. Can he approach that kind of form on the outdoor international stage in Oslo or Rio this year?
The Men’s Triple Jump takes place 7.45 pm (BST) Thursday night, with live coverage of the Oslo Diamond League Meeting on Eurosport2 from 7-9 pm (BST).
Men’s Triple Jump line-up (with 2016 Best/ 2016 Diamond League points):
Christian Taylor (USA) 17.76m/20
Chris Benard (USA) 17.19m/3
Troy Doris (Guyana) 17.18m/4
Omar Craddock (USA) 17.15m/5
Chris Carter (USA) 17.12m/0
Alexis Copello (Cuba) 16.99i/17
Tosin Oke (Nigeria) 16.73m/2
Pablo Torrijos (Spain) 16.71m/0