Christian Taylor looks to jump over 60 feet at the Rio Olympics to defend his gold medal.
Reigning Olympic champion Christian Taylor says that he would like to set the world record in the triple jump while defending his title at next summer’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, he tells USA Today’s Going for Gold podcast.
“The mindset that I have now is the world record,” Taylor said. “I’m so close to it and I would hate to end my career and be so close and not take that. It’s been 20 years since that record has stood. At the Olympic Games, why not make it something the viewers can remember? I think if I can get that, it would take away from the question that people ask ‘Would you rather have the world record or gold medal?’ If I can get the world record then I would come out with the gold medal also.”
The world record of 18.29 meters was set by Great Britain’s Jonathan Edwards in Göteborg in 1995. Edwards was in attendance at the Bird’s Nest as Taylor won gold at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing in Aug. with an American record and world leading mark of 18.21 meters. Taylor’s jump is the second best of all-time.
Cuba’s Pedro Pablo Pichardo took silver after the two men were tied at 17.60-meters going into the final jump. Taylor and Pichardo jumped over 18-meters to open the season at the Doha Diamond League meeting.
Watch Taylor's American record-setting jump at the world championships below:
Taylor was a finalist for the IAAF Athlete of the Year award, which was won by compatriot Ashton Eaton.
- Christopher Chavez