Winner of the World Indoor title earlier this year, Olga Rypakova of Kazakhstan, competing here for the Asia/Pacific team scored big as she landed a new personal best, World best and competition record 15.25 with the very first jump of the women’s Triple Jump final here in Split.
Rypakova bagged a $30,000 winner’s prize money as well as an extremely precious 8 points for her team which is reckoned to be the weakest of the four participating yet her win was never to be challenged this afternoon.
“I’m very happy,” said Rypakova. “It’s a great result for the end of the season. I like Split very much, I’m looking forward to going swimming on Monday! I’m proud to be a part of the team Asia/Pacific, I hope we’ll do as well tomorrow.”
In fact her nearest competitor European champion Olga Saladuha of Ukraine registered a best effort of 14.70, a mark which would be good enough for second and a tally of 7 points in a competition where the two-time World champion and Diamond League winner Yargelis Savigne of Cuba was relegated to third with 14.63.
The second Asian competitor, China’s Limei Xie completed the excellent showing for her team with a fourth place in a season’s best 14.35 while European silver medallist Simona La Mantia of Italy was having a bad day her best on the day a meagre 14.12.
US champion Erica McLain was having an even worse day none of her four legal jumps reaching the 14 metres. She finished eighth and last at 13.62 and scored a sole point for team Americas.
Savigne will return tomorrow to compete in the Long Jump although she admitted “I felt tired, my body was not responding in the way I wanted. I’ve been competing for the last three months and I’ve won almost every competition. That’s probably the reason why I wasn’t at my best today.”
Laura Arcoleo for the IAAF