She may have recorded only one legal jump in today’s final, but it was good enough for 17-year-old Florentina Marincu to become the third Romanian to win the World Youth Triple jump title.
After an opening foul, Marincu landed to 13.75m, an improvement of six centimetres on her own world youth-leading performance from the qualification round. She would go on to foul her four remaining attempts but it mattered little as no one in the field was able to do any better tonight.
As it turned out Marincu only registered two legal jumps in the whole championships as it took her only one attempt to qualify on Wednesday with her opening 13.69m.
Marincu was only 11 centimetres off the championship record which belongs to her compatriot, 2003 World youth champion Cristine Spataru. Marincu will now chase another of Spataru’s records as she lines up in tomorrow’s Long Jump qualifying round.
Indeed Spataru remains the only athlete ever to win a World Youth Long and Triple Jump double; after tonight’s gold, Marincu is on course to match that achievement.
It was a much closer contest for the minor medals with silver eventually going to Wang Rong of China and bronze to Keturah Orji of the USA although both recorded a best mark of 13.69m.
In fact the colour of the medal was decided by their second-best of the night and Wang prevailed by just one centimetre, 13.62m to Orji’s 13.61m, both from round three.
Jumping second last, Nubia Soares of Brazil was the one who set the tone with her opening 13.60m, an improvement of 17 centimetres on her personal best. However her lead was short-lived as Marincu and Wang improved with their second attempts of 13.75m and 13.69m respectively.
As it turned out, none of the three would improve in the remaining four rounds.
Soares was bumped off the podium when Orji’s third attempt was measured at a PB of 13.61m. Already in the bronze medal position, Orji improved to 13.69m on her sixth and final attempt but it did not affect the top three positions.