Lavillenie beats Bubka's indoor world record

Sat Feb 15, 2014 2:35pm EST
 
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(Reuters) - Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie of France established a pole vault indoor world record by clearing 6.16 meters at a meeting in Donetsk on Saturday.

"World Record ! 6.16 at my first attempt ! That's incredible, I'm still in the air," Lavillenie wrote on his official Twitter feed after the French Athletics Federation had flagged up the new record.

The previous mark of 6.15 was set by Sergei Bubka at the same event in Ukraine in 1993.

"It's completely unbelievable," Lavillenie, who took his head in his hands when he realized he had done it, later told French news channel BFM TV.

"I will need time to get back down on Earth. It was a mythical record. I knew I had the potential to do try it. But beat it so early, that's something else."

"I did not know what was happening to me. The sound was crazy. These are huge emotions. I am in a new dimension."

Six-time outdoor world champion and 1988 Olympic gold medalist Bubka still holds the outdoor world record of 6.14.

Bubka, who on Saturday morning had hoped Lavillenie would beat his record in his hometown of Donetsk if it had to happen one day, stood up and clapped his hands along with the cheering crowd after his mark was erased off the books.

"That's fantastic. It's history and I'm very happy that Renaud does it here, in Donetsk, my town," said Bubka, who came on the track to congratulate the Frenchman.   Continued...

 
Renaud Lavillenie of France establishes a pole vault indoor world record as he competes in the Pole Vault Stars meeting in Donetsk February 15, 2014. REUTERS/Valeriy Bilokryl