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1968 Olympic Games Ciudad de México, Mexico - Men's Pole Vault

 

 

Host City: Ciudad de México, Mexico Format: Top 12 and ties and all those clearing 4.90 metres advanced to the final.
Date Started: October 14, 1968  
Date Finished: October 16, 1968  
(Competitors: 23; Countries: 15; Finalists: 15)  
    Venue(s): University Olympic Stadium, Ciudad de México
Overview by IAAF    1968_olympic_stadium.jpg
Seagren was favourite, with European Champion Nordwig the next man most likely to succeed. They, and 13 others, cleared 4.90 to qualify. In the final only two athletes went out before the bar was raised to 5.10. Eleven men cleared 5.15 to beat the incumbent Olympic record, and nine went over 5.20. Bliznetsov dropped a place from 1964 despite clearing 5.30 – 35cm more than in Tokyo – leaving five men to battle for the medals. Pennel placed fifth after clearing 5.35 third time compared with Hristos Papanikolau’s first-time effort. Then Pennel made 5.40 on his second jump, good enough for the bronze medal ... but his pole passed under the bar, negating the clearance. The rule was changed the following year, but was in keeping with Pennel’s rotten Olympic luck. Nordwig was the bronze medal winner, making 5.40 on his final jump, while ahead of him Schiprowski was the surprise of the event, improving his best four times with booming athletic clearances at each height. Seagren was ahead because he had one less miss at lower heights. None of the three made 5.45, though Nordwig was closest, and Seagren had won the 16th consecutive gold medal (excluding 1906) for the USA The previous Olympic record was beaten 29 times by 11 athletes.
       
Summary by Sports-reference.com      
As in 1964 the competition came down to an American and several Germans. The American favorites were Bob Seagren and John Pennel, with Seagren considered the better. Both had set multiple world records. Six jumpers were still alive after 5.30 (17-4½) – Seagren, Pennel, Klaus Schiprowski (FRG), Wolfgang Nordwig (GDR), Khristos Papanikolaou (GRE), and Gennady Bliznetsov (URS). Bliznetsov missed at 5.35 (17-6½), and Seagren passed at that height. His pass was considered unusual and he later commented that it was his unfamiliarity with the metric system, as he did not realize that 5.35 was 17-6½, which was still a big height in that era. At 5.40 (17-8½), Pennel cleared on his second effort but his pole passed under the uprights, which was illegal in that era (the rule was changed the next year), and he would settle for 5.35 (17-6½) and fifth place. Seagren, Schiprowski and Nordwig all cleared 5.40 (17-8½), Seagren and Schiprowski on the second effort, Nordwig missing twice. When all three missed at 5.45 (17-10½), that gave Seagren the gold medal over Schiprowski based on fewer overall misses, with Nordwig getting bronze because of his three misses at 5.40 (17-8½).
 

Records

Prior to the competition, the existing World and Olympic records were as follows.

World record  Bob Seagren (USA) 5.41 m A Echo Summit, United States 12 September 1968
Olympic record  Fred Hansen (USA) 5.10 m Tokyo, Japan 17 October 1964

The following new Olympic record was set during this competition:

Date Event Athlete Mark Notes
16 October Final  Bob Seagren (USA)
 Claus Schiprowski (FRG)
 Wolfgang Nordwig (GDR)
5.40 OR
 
        Results          
 
Pole Vault Men     Final 16 October        
                   
Rank Mark     Athlete Country NOC Age Records Notes
1 5.40     Bob Seagren United States USA 21 OR  
2 5.40     Claus Schiprowski West Germany FRG 25 OR  
3 5.40     Wolfgang Nordwig East Germany GDR 25 OR  
4 5.35     Khristos Papanikolaou Greece GRE 26 OR  
5 5.35     John Pennel United States USA 28 OR  
6 5.30     Hennadiy Bleznitsov Soviet Union URS 27 OR  
7 5.25     Hervé d'Encausse France FRA 25 OR  
8 5.20     Heinfried Engel West Germany FRG 21 OR  
9 5.20     Ignacio Sola Spain ESP 24 OR  
10 5.15     Kjell Isaksson Sweden SWE 20 OR  
11 5.15     Kiyoshi Niwa Japan JPN 21 OR  
12 5.00     Aleksandr Malyutin Soviet Union URS 29    
13 5.00     Mike Bull Great Britain GBR 22    
14 5.00     Altti Alarotu Finland FIN 23    
AC NH     Erkki Mustakari Finland FIN 22    
Pole Vault Men     Qualifying Round Group A 14 October        
                   
Rank Mark     Athlete Country NOC Age Records Notes
1T 4.90     Wolfgang Nordwig East Germany GDR 25    
1T 4.90     John Pennel United States USA 28    
3T 4.90     Altti Alarotu Finland FIN 23    
3T 4.90     Erkki Mustakari Finland FIN 22    
3T 4.90     Hervé d'Encausse France FRA 25    
3T 4.90     Claus Schiprowski West Germany FRG 25    
3T 4.90     Khristos Papanikolaou Greece GRE 26    
3T 4.90     Hennadiy Bleznitsov Soviet Union URS 27    
9 4.90     Bob Seagren United States USA 21    
10 4.90     Kjell Isaksson Sweden SWE 20    
11 4.90     Heinfried Engel West Germany FRG 21    
12 4.60     Casey Carrigan United States USA 17    
Pole Vault Men     Qualifying Round Group B 14 October        
                   
Rank Mark     Athlete Country NOC Age Records Notes
1T 4.90     Ignacio Sola Spain ESP 24    
1T 4.90     Mike Bull Great Britain GBR 22    
1T 4.90     Kiyoshi Niwa Japan JPN 21    
4 4.90     Aleksandr Malyutin Soviet Union URS 29    
5 4.80     Pantelis Nikolaidis Greece GRE 26    
6 4.80     Enrico Barney Argentina ARG 27    
7 4.75     Klaus Lehnertz West Germany FRG 30    
8 4.75     John-Erik Blomqvist Sweden SWE 23    
9 4.50     Wu Ah-Min Chinese Taipei TPE 30    
10 4.50     Heinz Wyss Switzerland SUI 22    
AC NH     Ingo Peyker Austria AUT 27    

 Detailed View

 

Results

Qualifying

Rank Group Name Nationality Mark 4.20 4.30 4.40 4.50 4.60 4.70 4.75 4.80 4.85 4.90 Notes
1= A Wolfgang Nordwig East Germany 4.90         o  
1= A John Pennel United States 4.90         o  
3= A Altti Alarotu Finland 4.90         o o  
3= A Erkki Mustakari Finland 4.90         o o  
3= A Hervé d'Encausse France 4.90         o o  
3= A Claus Schiprowski West Germany 4.90         o o  
3= A Christos Papanikolaou Greece 4.90         o o  
3= A Hennadiy Bleznitsov Soviet Union 4.90         o o  
9= B Ignacio Sola Spain 4.90 o o o  
9= B Mike Bull Great Britain 4.90 o o o  
9= B Kiyoshi Niwa Japan 4.90 o o o  
12 B Aleksandr Malyutin Soviet Union 4.90 xxo o o xxo o  
13 A Bob Seagren United States 4.90         xo  
14 A Kjell Isaksson Sweden 4.90         o xo  
15 A Heinfried Engel West Germany 4.90         o o xxo  
16 B Pantelis Nikolaidis Greece 4.80 o o o xxx  
17 B Enrico Barney Argentina 4.80 o o xo o xxo o xxx  
18 B Klaus Lehnertz West Germany 4.75 o o o xxx    
19 B John-Erik Blomqvist Sweden 4.75 o xxo xxx  
20 A Casey Carrigan United States 4.60         o xxx  
21 B Wu Ah-Min Republic of China 4.50 o o o xxx            
22 B Heinz Wyss Switzerland 4.50 xo o r          
N/A B Ingo Peyker Austria xxx              

Key: OR = Olympic record; o = clear ; – = pass; x = fail; r = retired

Final

Rank Name Nationality 4.60 4.80 4.90 5.00 5.05 5.10 5.15 5.20 5.25 5.30 5.35 5.40 5.45 Mark Notes
1st Bob Seagren United States o xo o xo xxx 5.40 OR
2nd Claus Schiprowski West Germany o o o o xo o xo xo xxx 5.40 OR
3rd Wolfgang Nordwig East Germany xo o o o xxo xxx 5.40 OR
4 Christos Papanikolaou Greece o o o xo xo o xxx 5.35  
5 John Pennel United States o xo xo xxo xxx 5.35  
6 Hennadiy Bleznitsov Soviet Union o o o o xo xxx     5.30  
7 Hervé d'Encausse France o xo o xxx     5.25  
8 Heinfried Engel West Germany o xxo xo o xxx         5.20  
9 Ignacio Sola Spain xo o xo o xxo xxx         5.20  
10 Kjell Isaksson Sweden o xo o xxx           5.15  
11 Kiyoshi Niwa Japan o o o o xo xxx           5.15  
12 Aleksandr Malyutin Soviet Union o o o xxx               5.00  
13 Mike Bull Great Britain xo o xo xxx               5.00  
14 Altti Alarotu Finland xxo r                 5.00  
N/A Erkki Mustakari Finland xxx                       NM  

Key: OR = Olympic record; o = clear ; – = pass; x = fail; r = retired

 
 

 

 

 

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