|200 Metres||24.83||+0.9||Almaty (KAZ)||10 MAY 2002|
|800 Metres||2:14.86||Almaty (KAZ)||11 MAY 2002|
|100 Metres Hurdles||14.02||-0.2||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUN 2006|
|High Jump||1.92||Doha (QAT)||08 DEC 2006|
|Long Jump||6.85||-0.7||Bangkok (THA)||10 AUG 2007|
|Triple Jump||15.25||+1.7||Split (CRO)||04 SEP 2010||AR|
|Shot Put||13.04||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUN 2006|
|Javelin Throw||41.60||Daegu (KOR)||26 AUG 2003|
|Heptathlon||6122||Almaty (KAZ)||28 JUN 2006|
|60 Metres||7.89||Moskva (RUS)||22 FEB 2002|
|800 Metres||2:22.57||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|60 Metres Hurdles||8.67||Bangkok (THA)||13 NOV 2005|
|High Jump||1.88||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|Long Jump||6.58||Hanoi (VIE)||02 NOV 2009|
|Triple Jump||15.14||Doha (QAT)||13 MAR 2010||AR|
|Shot Put||12.90||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|Pentathlon||4582||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006||AR|
|Long Jump||6.50||+0.1||Almaty (KAZ)||13 MAY 2017|
|Triple Jump||14.77||+0.9||London (GBR)||07 AUG 2017|
|Long Jump||6.44||Ust-Kamenogorsk (KAZ)||10 FEB 2017|
|Triple Jump||14.32||Ashgabat (TKM)||19 SEP 2017|
|2006||25.63||+0.8||Doha (QAT)||08 DEC 2006|
|2003||25.16||-0.5||Desenzano del Garda (ITA)||10 MAY 2003|
|2002||24.83||+0.9||Almaty (KAZ)||10 MAY 2002|
|2006||2:30.46||Doha (QAT)||09 DEC 2006|
|2003||2:21.77||Desenzano del Garda (ITA)||11 MAY 2003|
|2002||2:14.86||Almaty (KAZ)||11 MAY 2002|
|2006||14.02||-0.2||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUN 2006|
|2003||14.74||+0.5||Desenzano del Garda (ITA)||10 MAY 2003|
|2002||14.38||+0.8||Kingston (JAM)||19 JUL 2002|
|2008||1.81||Ankara (TUR)||14 JUN 2008|
|2006||1.92||Doha (QAT)||08 DEC 2006|
|2003||1.82||Desenzano del Garda (ITA)||10 MAY 2003|
|2002||1.83||Almaty (KAZ)||10 MAY 2002|
|2017||6.50||+0.1||Almaty (KAZ)||13 MAY 2017|
|2015||6.19||0.0||Almaty (KAZ)||14 JUN 2015|
|2011||6.56||-1.8||Almaty (KAZ)||29 JUL 2011|
|2010||6.60||+0.1||Split (CRO)||05 SEP 2010|
|2009||6.42||+1.6||Bursa (TUR)||10 JUN 2009|
|2008||6.47||-0.3||Moskva (RUS)||06 SEP 2008|
|2007||6.85||-0.7||Bangkok (THA)||10 AUG 2007|
|2006||6.63||+1.2||Doha (QAT)||09 DEC 2006|
|2005||6.60||+1.9||Almaty (KAZ)||04 JUN 2005|
|2003||6.14||+1.1||Almaty (KAZ)||25 JUL 2003|
|2002||6.26||Almaty (KAZ)||11 MAY 2002|
|2001||6.00||Almaty (KAZ)||22 MAY 2001|
|2000||6.23||+1.8||Almaty (KAZ)||27 MAY 2000|
|2017||14.77||+0.9||London (GBR)||07 AUG 2017|
|2016||14.74||+0.3||Rio de Janeiro (BRA)||14 AUG 2016|
|2015||14.77||+0.1||Beijing (CHN)||24 AUG 2015|
|2014||14.37||0.0||Birmingham (GBR)||24 AUG 2014|
|2012||14.98||-0.4||London (GBR)||05 AUG 2012|
|2011||14.96||+1.9||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUL 2011|
|2010||15.25||+1.7||Split (CRO)||04 SEP 2010|
|2009||14.53||+0.2||Guangzhou (CHN)||11 NOV 2009|
|2008||15.11||+0.3||Beijing (CHN)||17 AUG 2008|
|2007||14.69||+1.6||Amman (JOR)||28 JUL 2007|
|2006||13.04||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUN 2006|
|2003||12.24||Daegu (KOR)||25 AUG 2003|
|2002||12.24||Kingston (JAM)||19 JUL 2002|
|2006||38.03||Doha (QAT)||09 DEC 2006|
|2003||41.60||Daegu (KOR)||26 AUG 2003|
|2002||40.12||Almaty (KAZ)||11 MAY 2002|
|2006||6122||Almaty (KAZ)||28 JUN 2006|
|2003||5699||Desenzano del Garda (ITA)||11 MAY 2003|
|2002||5903||Almaty (KAZ)||11 MAY 2002|
|2001||5247||Almaty (KAZ)||22 MAY 2001|
|2001/02||7.89||Moskva (RUS)||22 FEB 2002|
|2005/06||2:23.09||Moskva (RUS)||10 MAR 2006|
|2003/04||2:22.57||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|2005/06||8.67||Bangkok (THA)||13 NOV 2005|
|2003/04||8.88||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|2002/03||8.96||Karaganda (KAZ)||07 FEB 2003|
|2005/06||1.88||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|2003/04||1.83||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|2002/03||1.80||Karaganda (KAZ)||07 FEB 2003|
|2016/17||6.44||Ust-Kamenogorsk (KAZ)||10 FEB 2017|
|2015/16||6.22||Doha (QAT)||19 FEB 2016|
|2014/15||6.41||Ust-Kamenogorsk (KAZ)||14 FEB 2015|
|2009/10||6.58||Hanoi (VIE)||02 NOV 2009|
|2005/06||6.55||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|2003/04||6.53||Karaganda (KAZ)||23 JAN 2004|
|2002/03||6.34||Moskva (RUS)||12 FEB 2003|
|2001/02||6.06||Moskva (RUS)||12 FEB 2002|
|2016/17||14.32||Ashgabat (TKM)||19 SEP 2017|
|2015/16||14.32||Doha (QAT)||20 FEB 2016|
|2014/15||14.03||Ust-Kamenogorsk (KAZ)||15 FEB 2015|
|2011/12||14.84||Karaganda (KAZ)||27 JAN 2012|
|2009/10||15.14||Doha (QAT)||13 MAR 2010|
|2007/08||14.58||Valencia (ESP)||08 MAR 2008|
|2005/06||12.90||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|2003/04||12.13||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|2002/03||12.08||Moskva (RUS)||23 FEB 2003|
|2001/02||12.18||Moskva (RUS)||22 FEB 2002|
|2005/06||4582||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|2003/04||4344||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|2002/03||4190||Karaganda (KAZ)||07 FEB 2003|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.98||-0.4||London (GBR)||05 AUG 2012|
|3.||Triple Jump||14.74||+0.3||Rio de Janeiro (BRA)||14 AUG 2016|
|3.||Triple Jump||15.11||+0.3||Beijing (CHN)||17 AUG 2008|
|2.||Triple Jump||14.89||+0.2||Daegu (KOR)||01 SEP 2011|
|3.||Triple Jump||14.77||+0.9||London (GBR)||07 AUG 2017|
|3.||Triple Jump||14.77||+0.1||Beijing (CHN)||24 AUG 2015|
|1.||Triple Jump||15.14||Doha (QAT)||13 MAR 2010|
|2.||Triple Jump||14.63||Istanbul (TUR)||10 MAR 2012|
|3.||Triple Jump||14.58||Valencia (ESP)||08 MAR 2008|
|7.||Pentathlon||4368||Moskva (RUS)||10 MAR 2006|
|1.||Triple Jump||15.25||+1.7||Split (CRO)||04 SEP 2010|
|3.||Long Jump||6.60||+0.1||Split (CRO)||05 SEP 2010|
|8.||Long Jump||6.21||+0.1||Athina (GRE)||17 SEP 2006|
|2.||Heptathlon||5727||Kingston (JAM)||20 JUL 2002|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.69||+1.6||Amman (JOR)||28 JUL 2007|
|1.||Long Jump||6.66||+2.4||Amman (JOR)||27 JUL 2007|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.53||+0.2||Guangzhou (CHN)||11 NOV 2009|
|4.||Long Jump||6.50||0.0||Incheon (KOR)||04 SEP 2005|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.32||-0.4||Incheon (KOR)||01 OCT 2014|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.78||+1.1||Guangzhou (CHN)||25 NOV 2010|
|2.||Long Jump||6.50||-0.4||Guangzhou (CHN)||23 NOV 2010|
|3.||Long Jump||6.49||+0.1||Doha (QAT)||10 DEC 2006|
|6.||Heptathlon||5955||Doha (QAT)||09 DEC 2006|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.55||-0.2||Zürich (SUI)||24 AUG 2017|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.61||+1.5||Birmingham (GBR)||05 JUN 2016|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.33||+0.9||London (GBR)||24 JUL 2015|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.72||+0.4||Bruxelles (BEL)||07 SEP 2012|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.68||-0.6||Lausanne (SUI)||23 AUG 2012|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.71||-0.9||New York, NY (USA)||09 JUN 2012|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.33||+0.5||Doha (QAT)||11 MAY 2012|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.80||-0.9||Bruxelles (BEL)||27 AUG 2010|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.89||+1.0||Shanghai (CHN)||23 MAY 2010|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.32||Doha (QAT)||20 FEB 2016|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.23||Doha (QAT)||14 FEB 2008|
|1.||Pentathlon||4582||Pattaya (THA)||10 FEB 2006|
|3.||Long Jump||6.22||Doha (QAT)||19 FEB 2016|
|1.||Long Jump||6.85||-0.7||Bangkok (THA)||10 AUG 2007|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.10||0.0||Almaty (KAZ)||15 JUN 2015|
|1.||Long Jump||6.19||0.0||Almaty (KAZ)||14 JUN 2015|
|1.||Long Jump||6.56||-1.8||Almaty (KAZ)||29 JUL 2011|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.96||+1.9||Almaty (KAZ)||27 JUL 2011|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.05||-0.7||Almaty (KAZ)||06 JUL 2007|
|1.||Long Jump||6.57||+2.2||Almaty (KAZ)||04 JUL 2007|
|1.||Heptathlon||6122||Almaty (KAZ)||28 JUN 2006|
|1.||Long Jump||6.36||+1.0||Almaty (KAZ)||08 JUL 2005|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.84||Karaganda (KAZ)||27 JAN 2012|
|1.||Triple Jump||14.30||Karaganda (KAZ)||28 JAN 2010|
|1.||Long Jump||6.39||Karaganda (KAZ)||27 JAN 2010|
|1.||Long Jump||6.01||Karaganda (KAZ)||24 FEB 2006|
|1.||Long Jump||6.01||Karaganda (KAZ)||24 JAN 2006|
|1.||Pentathlon||4344||Karaganda (KAZ)||06 FEB 2004|
|1.||Long Jump||6.53||Karaganda (KAZ)||23 JAN 2004|
|13 MAY 2017||Almaty National Cup||KAZ||F||F||1.||6.50||+0.1|
|10 FEB 2017||Ust-Kamenogorsk Kazakh Ind. Ch.||KAZ||D||F||1.||6.44|
|18 SEP 2017||Ashgabat Asian Indoor Games||TKM||D||F||1.||6.43|
|14 MAY 2017||Almaty National Cup||KAZ||F||F||1.||14.45||+1.0|
|08 JUN 2017||Roma Golden Gala - Pietro Mennea||ITA||GW||F||3.||14.64||+0.1|
|16 JUL 2017||Rabat Meeting Mohammed VI d'Athletisme||MAR||GW||F||4.||14.20||+0.3|
|21 JUL 2017||Monaco Herculis||MON||GW||F||6.||14.12||-0.6|
|05 AUG 2017||London IAAF World Championships in Athletics||GBR||OW||Q2||1.||14.57||+1.1|
|07 AUG 2017||London IAAF World Championships in Athletics||GBR||OW||F||3.||14.77||+0.9|
|20 AUG 2017||Birmingham Müller Grand Prix||GBR||GW||F||3.||14.29||+0.4|
|24 AUG 2017||Zürich Weltklasse||SUI||DF||F||1.||14.55||-0.2|
|19 SEP 2017||Ashgabat Asian Indoor Games||TKM||D||F||1.||14.32|
Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.
Updated 2 August 2017
Olga RYPAKOVA, Kazakhstan (Triple Jump)
Born: 30 November 1984, Ust-Kamenogorsk
Lives in Almaty
1.83cm / 62kg
Coaching by Sergey Alekseev & Denis Rypakov
Olga Rypakova (maiden name Alekseeva) was involved in athletics at the age of 8. Her father, Sergey Alekseev, is a former Decathlete (7800 points) and current coach in athletics. Little Olga came in athletics in Tatyana Nazarova’s group, where she took an excellent post-soviet school in multi-events preparation. At the time Rypakova preferred Hurdles and Long Jump. No wonder that she became a Sport Master (Kazakhstan classification) at the age of 15, when she leaped 6.23 at youth competitions in Almaty. Thanks to that result she booked her ticket to the World Junior Championships in Santiago de Chile. Being much younger than all participants Olga didn’t get upset when she jumped 5.63 only. Nobody demanded from her high results there.
In 2001 Rypakova began her career in Combined Events. During three years Olga improved her results, aimed at the Athens Olympics. In 2002 she won Silver at the World Junior Championships in Kingston and scored 5727 points.
The following winter, Rypakova set the Asian Junior Record and National record in Pentathlon (4190 points) and won her first Central Asian Games in October. She was successful in entering the National Academy of Sport and Tourism and began her independent life in the hostel of the Olympic Preparation Centre in Almaty. There Olga met her love – 400 and 400m Hurdles runner, ex national indoor record holder Denis Rypakov and got married with him in 2003.
At the beginning of 2004 Rypakova felt that something was going wrong despite the fact that she set her Indoor PBs in Pentathlon (4344 points) and in Long Jump (6.53m). After medical examinations, Rypakova came back home with happy news. She was pregnant. “We didn’t have such plans but if God gave us such chance we had to take it easy.” Rypakova says. “My dad was shocked by that news. It was the Olympic year and he hoped to see me in Athens. Anyway, he accepted that situation as a due.”
On September 21, 2004 Rypakova gave birth to her daughter Anastasiya.
In the following months, Olga began her recovery and returned to her usual shape very quickly. But she lost a lot of weight and had no power to compete in Heptathlon. Rypakova tried herself in Long Jump again and was very satisfied with the first results. On 4 June 2005 she fulfilled standard of International Class Sport Master (Kazakhstan classification) achieving 6.60 at International Meeting in Almaty.
In winter 2006 she set new the Asian Indoor Record in Pentathlon and finished first at the Asian Championships, in Pattaya, with 4582 points, but was 7th only at the World Indoor Championships in Moscow with 4368.
On 28 June, Rypakova first scored over 6000 points in Heptathlon – 6122 – being first at the National Championships. She was prepared to travel to the Asian Games and aimed at the gold medal only.
“It was too difficult for me,” Rypakova recalls. “Definitely my weight and my power were not enough for Heptathlon. All the season we tried to find the golden mean. I had to become much stronger but if I worked with weights I always was under the risk to take an injury. That is why we made a lot of technical work. We saw great progress in all jumping and sprint events, but were so slow in improving my results in throwing. At least I got the gold at Asian Games in Doha and scored in Heptathlon 5955 points, but decided that it was time to say ‘Good bye’ to my multi events performances.”
For summer season 2007, Rypakova was preparing as a long jumper. She won the National Championships in Almaty with 6.57 and was asked by the coaches just to make few attempts in Triple Jump to bring more points for her team. It was very bad, rainy and cold weather. Rypakova couldn’t take any chances before main competitions. She used short (only 9 steps) run-up in Triple Jump but took a win with impressive result, 14.05.
“When we came to the Asian Championships, in Amman, I saw my name in women’s Triple Jump start list. At first I thought that it’s just a mistake. But when our team bosses told me that I have to jump, I made the scandal! I was gripped by fear and leaped in such condition 14.69. I thought that it was another mistake, now from the judge’s side, but they made one measurement more because it was Kazakhstan’s National Record.”
In such way Rypakova became a triple jumper. After Asian Championships she agreed to compete in Triple Jump at the World Championships. In Osaka Olga showed 8th result in qualification (14.41) and reached the final easily. But in the Final she was able to jump only 14.32 and took 11th place.
During winter season 2008, Rypakova had understood that Long Jump would become only her auxiliary event. However, going to the World Indoor Championships, in Valencia, Olga didn’t have any medal expectations in Triple Jump. She needed more experience in this field and she tried to keep her eyes on rivals, learning what, why and how they do one or another thing. Rypakova was very surprised to finish4th in the Valencia Final, with new Indoor Asian record 14.58.
In summer 2008, Rypakova’s usual preparation for main season’s competitions changed completely. They got to learn Triple Jump’s peculiarities reading a lot of special scientific literature. Olga improved her velocity appreciably and learned how to keep the speed on the board and after take-off. She had great shape before the Olympic Games, but coming to Beijing she didn’t know what result she was ready to show.
“Going to Beijing I incited myself that I have to visit something like big bright holiday!” Rypakova recalls. “From the first day I felt winged and inspired. Moreover, my husband made a nice surprise for me. As it was impossible for him to join official Olympic delegation, Denis bought tickets at his own expenses and came in my pre-Olympic camp in Daegu and then went with me to Beijing. Nobody believed that I was able to do something special at that Olympics, but Denis did. He was near me in the most important moments and helped me to remain calm and to keep positive thoughts.”
In the Beijing Final, Rypakova surprised everyone including herself. She took 4th place with new Asian Record 15.11. “It was really fantastic performance for me,” Olga resumed. Later she was upgraded to the silver medal of the Olympic Games 2008 due to disqualifications of Greek Hrysopiyi Devetsi and Russian Tatyana Lebedeva.
After such success, Rypakova felt big moral tiredness. She missed the winter season 2009 and didn’t want to force her shape in summer. Moreover she caught acute kidney inflammation before the World Championships in Berlin and had to take a little break for antibiotic treatment. Her physical shape fell down and Rypakova in Berlin leaped 13.91 in the Final and took 10th place only.
“I would have liked to finish summer season 2009 in Berlin, but we had one more important event in the calendar,” Olga says. “I had to prepare for Asian Championships. Fortunately I recovered after the illness and on 11 November won with 14.53. it was very good result, against the background of an unsuccessful 2009 summer season.”
In winter 2010, Rypakova was ready to fight for the medal at the World Indoor Championships. In Doha she won gold and first jumped over the 15m mark Indoors, setting new Asian Record 15.14.
In summer 2010 I had very many international meetings and competed in all Diamond League events.” Rypakova says. “I had a special task for that season, to go through all competitions without being in a mess and keep out from injuries till the Continental Cup. I managed my job well. But my result in Split – 15.25 new PB and AR – was really unexpected!”
Rypakova finished her eventful year with victory at the Asian Games on 25 November, leaping a solid 14.78. She took full winter’s rest, but later understood that it was a very big mistake. She need much more time to gain in competitive shape. Only at the National Championships, in Almaty on 27 July, Rypakova could show her usual result. “It was the day when everything worked for me,” Olga tells. “We competed at the new stadium with fast surface. Weather conditions were ideal. Very many of my friends came to the stadium to support me. I jumped 14.96 and looked forward to Daegu with great hopes.”
But at the Diamond League event in London, Rypakova got an injury. Pain in the leg didn’t allow her to make technical work and to run sprints. In spite of fact that she felt much better before the World Championships, Olga came to Daegu without confidence. “Certainly, I wanted to win. But no doubt the women’s Triple Jump Final day was the day of Olha Saladuha. I leaped 14.89 in 5th round and stopped on the distance of 5cm only from the World gold.”
Taking into consideration last year’s experience, Rypakova didn’t miss the winter season 2012. But her preparation was frustrated because of a back injury. She had time to recover before the World Indoor Championships, but her shape in Istanbul wasn’t brilliant. “I had a few nice and far attempts in Istanbul, but wasn’t accurate on the board,” Rypakova says. “I had many problems with my run-up. Nevertheless, I took the World Indoor silver with 14.63, but lost to Britain veteran Yamile Aldama. Definitely I was surprised by her shape and readiness in the Olympic season. It’s like she got a second wind in athletics for her home Olympics.”
During summer 2012, Rypakova didn’t have many competitions. She opened her Olympic season at the Diamond League stage in Doha with 14.33 and achieved her SB in Rome on 31 May – 14.73. “I was focused on London and hoped to be in my best shape there,” Rypakova said. “There was a big difference between Olympics Games 2008 and 2012 for me. In Beijing I was the newcomer in Triple Jump. But in London everyone spelled my name among Olympic favorites. I felt a little under pressure because of this, but on the other hand it helped me to be much more focused and dependable in the field.”
In the London Olympic qualification, Rypakova was forced to check her shape 100% when she failed during the first attempt and then landed at 13.99m in the second round. Such a result didn’t allow her to perform in final, but she produced a fantastic final qualification jump and made the final from first position with 14.79m.
“At first I was too upset that I had to make all three jumps, but finally that experience helped me to cope with the fast track and to put my emotions under control during final. I jumped 14.98m in the third round, I was sure it will not be enough to be the winner. Moreover, I hoped to pass 15m barrier. I needed some pressure from the rivals in the field, but I did last attempt already as Olympic champion. There were fantastic feelings!” Rypakova recalled.
Later she confirmed her superiority in the women’s triple jump when she won the Diamond League meeting in Lausanne with 14.68m and the DL final in Brussels with 14.72m.
Not a long after the end of the season, Rypakova understood that she was expecting her second baby. It was like God’s gift, because she felt too tired physically and mentally and definitely needed some time to rest.
On 14 June 2013, Olga gave birth to her son. She didn’t take a long pause for recovery and started light training a couple months later. At that time, a new indoor athletics arena was opened in her native Ust-Kamenogorsk and was named after her.
“My husband started to work as school head in this new centre and I tried to help him as much as I could, making consultations about the best track and field facilities based on my experience. It was huge work, that we had to manage together. At the same time, I started my preparation for the next seasons. I was not in a hurry to perform in 2014, but I wanted to remember my competition feelings. That is why I started to compete late in the season, to gain a shape before the Asian Games, which are very important events for our country,” Rypakova said.
On 1 October, 2014, Olga won her third Asian Championships in triple jump, landing at 14.32m in her best attempt.
Preparing for the World Championships 2015, Rypakova appreciably improved her speed and became much stronger physically. “That was a great foundation for my technical work during the summer. I’m glad I was able to perform at the same level during all the season. I have high enough speed, I feel powerful, I’m not bad in technical details, but I need to join all these things into the one jump,” said Rypakova going to the Chinese training camp two weeks before Beijing. “That was my task for last 15 days before my performance at the World Championships and I coped with it successfully. Unfortunately, I had some health problems all season and couldn’t do all the work we planned to be highly prepared to perform in Beijing, but I’m an experienced athlete and I knew I can pluck up my spirit at the right time.”
On 22 August at the Bird’s Nest Stadium, Olga achieved the qualification in the first attempt, landing at 14.33m. Two days later, she couldn’t keep back tears and happiness, running the traditional lap of honour on the Beijing track with the Kazakh flag in her hands. She leapt to the third position in the fourth round and then improved her result in the last attempt, landing at 14.77m, only one centimetre behind Israeli Hanna Knyazyeva-Minenko and 13cm behind Colombian Caterine Ibargüen, who was undefeated in three years.
“It was a very difficult competition for me and overemotional. I even didn’t expect to show such a strong result. My shape was far from my top. That means I have potential and many things to improve. Since I gave birth to my second child, I feel I was not strong enough for my usual loadings and technical work. I still wasn’t ready to jump far. But sometimes you can do miracles just thanks to your iron character and desire to win. I was incredibly focused and used all my physical potential when doing my last attempt in Beijing,” Rypakova recalls.
Inspired by her bronze medal from the Beijing World Championships, Olga understood she is on the right track in preparing for the Olympic Games 2016. In spite of that fact, she decided to skip the World Indoor Championships in Portland, to have more time for Rio preparation. Nevertheless, she checked her shape competing in both Long and Triple Jump events at the Asian Indoor Championships in Doha, where she took the gold medal in her favourite discipline, leaping to 14.32m.
Rypakova opened her outdoor season at the Diamond League meeting in Doha on 6 May with a good 14.61m. One month later, Olga repeated that result in Birmingham, where she took a very important and “historical” victory, breaking Ibarguen’s winning streak, which counted 34 consecutive wins. It is interesting, that precisely Rypakova was the last athlete, who beat Ibarguen, in the London Olympic arena, before the unbroken chain of the Colombian jumper’s victories.
“Yes, I created a little sensation at the Diamond League meeting in Birmingham, especially because everyone thought it’s absolutely impossible to beat Caterine nowadays. Certainly, this win gave me more self-confidence,” Rypakova said.
Olga spent the last stage of pre-Olympic preparation in training camp in Portugal. “We chose the training place based on several factors. Portugal is a country with hot and damp climate. Time difference between Lisbon and Rio isn’t so big and it means that I’ll take acclimatisation little by little. We tried to take into account as many details as possible, because that year we went for it all,” Rypakova said.
She came to Rio de Janeiro in a good mood that really helped her to do quality work and to jump far. “Of course, it was much more difficult than in London, because to defend an Olympic title is always much harder than to achieve it for the first time. If even I used two attempts to go through the qualification in Rio, I stayed optimistic. I was sure that in final I can achieve much more than 14.39m and I was ready for strong battle,” Rypakova said.
Already in the first round of women’s triple jump at the Olympic Stadium on 14 August, Rypakova improved her season best to 14.73m and then she have managed to add one centimetre more for her open result, but it turned out that Colombian Caterine Ibargüen and Yulimar Rojas from Venezuela were unattainable for her that evening.
“I cannot say that I lost the gold medal in Rio. I won bronze and I was really happy to stand on the Olympic medal podium again, if even it wasn’t the highest step. I’m sure that I did everything I could at that moment. Those feeling game me the hope that I’ll able to continue with athletics in the next Olympic cycle,” Rypakova confessed, but noted that it’s right time to change something in her preparation to have ability to fight with young and strong rivals.
Changes came without delay. She decided to cut the number of competitions and to perform only at the most important meeting while preparing for London World Championships. “Aged 32 I have to take care about my health and physical condition much more than my young rivals. Big loadings can lead to injuries, so I must be prudent and feel what my body says. At the beginning of the current season I checked my shape and was satisfied with 14.64m season best at Golden Gala Diamond League event in Rome on 8 June. Performing in Rabat and Monaco I even didn’t expect to show strong results, as I was under heavy loading due to my London Worlds preparation plan. My last training camp before London 2017 was in Portugal with nice memories from last year and great job. I feel fresh and, of course, I’ll take my next chance to make World Championships podium once more,” Rypakova said a couple days before her departure to British capital.
Regarding her global goals in athletics, Rypakova confessed that she would like to break the World record or to get as close as possible to it. “In any case, I want to improve my personal best of 15.25m and to take another Olympic gold medal. Nobody can forbid me such the dreams,” Olga smiles.
In 2006 Rypakova graduated from the Kazakh Academy of Sport and Tourism as coach in athletics. Nevertheless she didn’t think about her future occupation and would like to stay away from trainer’s work. She is interested in landscape and home design and wants to dedicate herself first of all to her family after retirement from athletics.
Triple Jump (outdoor/indoor): 15.25 AR (2010)/15.14 AR (2010)
Triple Jump (outdoor/indoor): 2007: 14.69 NR/-; 2008: 15.11 AR/14.58; 2009: 14.53/-; 2010: 15.25 AR/15.14; 2011: 14.96/-; 2012: 14.98/14.84; 2013: -; 2014: 14.37/-; 2015: 14.77/14.03; 2016: 14.74/14.32; 2017: 14.64/-
2000 q World Junior Championships (Long Jump)
2001 4 World Youth Championships (Heptathlon)
2002 2nd World Junior Championships (Heptathlon)
2003 8th World University Games (Heptathlon)
2003 1st Central Asian Games (Heptathlon)
2005 q World University Games (Long Jump)
2005 4th Asian Championships (Long Jump)
2006 1st Asian Indoor Championships (Pentathlon)
2006 7th World Indoor Championships (Pentathlon)
2006 8th World Cup (Long Jump)
2006 1st Asian Games (Heptathlon)
2006 3rd Asian Games (Long Jump)
2007 1st World University Games (Long Jump)
2007 11th World Championships (Triple Jump)
2008 1st Asian Indoor Championships (Triple Jump)
2008 4th World Indoor Championships (Triple Jump)
2008 2nd Olympic Games (Triple Jump)
2009 10th World Championships (Triple Jump)
2009 1st Asian Indoor Games (Triple Jump)
2009 1st Asian Indoor Games (Long Jump)
2010 1st World Indoor Championships (Triple Jump)
2010 1st Continental Cup (Triple Jump)
2010 1st Asian Games (Triple Jump)
2011 2nd World Championships (Triple Jump)
2012 2nd World Indoor Championships (Triple Jump)
2012 1st Olympic Games (Triple Jump)
2014 1st Asian Games (Triple Jump)
2015 3rd World Championships (Triple Jump)
2016 3rd Asian Indoor Championships (Long Jump)
2016 1st Asian Indoor Championships (Triple Jump)
2016 3rd Olympic Games (Triple Jump)
Prepared by Liudmyla Iakusheva for the IAAF ‘Focus on Athletes’ project. Copyright IAAF 2012-2017