Best vaulter in world at 36? Fersure it’s Jenn after 15-11 Pre win

Jenn showed smarts as well as skill in her jump strategy at Hayward Field.

London Olympic champ Jenn Suhr is sure having fun in her geezerhood. At 36, almost old enough to be a mother to some rivals, she won the Pre Classic vault Saturday with a W35 world record of 4.85 meters (15-11), upping her own listed WR of 4.83 (15-10) from a year ago.

Social media didn’t seem to notice the age-group record. But WMA, bless its little heart, called attention to the mark on its coming-of-age Twitter feed.

The WMA site breathlessly announced: “Thats (sic) right, breaking news coming out of Eugene at the IAAF diamond league is that Jennifer Suhr of the USA has cleared 4.85m in the Pole Vault, not only to win the event with a new meet record but to also break the existing record for W35.”

Kudos to WMA for posting the news the day it happened. That’s heartening for an outfit we’ve dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century, media-wise.

Now the next barrier is 16 feet. Jenn has an indoor PR of 5.03 (16-6) and an outdoor best of 4.92 (16-2). Jeff Hartwig made the 2008 Olympic team at 40. Will Jenn match him at 38 with a ticket to Tokyo?

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About the Author

Ken Stone
Ken has followed track as an athlete, writer and webmaster since the late 1960s, and saw most sessions of track and field at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He also attended the 1988, 1992, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 Trials. He worked for 10 newspapers and now reports for Times of San Diego. Write him at or Story tips always welcome!

2 Comments on "Best vaulter in world at 36? Fersure it’s Jenn after 15-11 Pre win"

  1. William Williams | June 1, 2018 at 8:32 am | Reply

    Hello. My name is William D. Williams. I’ve been looking on the computer for a while now, trying to get some information on how to join maters track and field and I’m not getting any information about who I should write to. I did fill out an application on the masters sight, but I haven’t heard from anyone. Can you please let me know something about joining masters before the east regional championships. Thank You

    • Jerry Bookin--Weiner | June 2, 2018 at 7:39 am | Reply


      Go to the USATF website ( and click on the Products and Services link on the top toolbar. From there click on Individual Memberships, and from there click on For Individual Members. That will take you to the form where you purchase a membership. You should get your member # at the end of that process.

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