Akron pole vaulter set a new record Saturday — 19 feet three inches, busting the national record of 19 inches, two and a quarter inches set back in 1999. But it won’t count. Since he was competing as an “unattached” jumper in what was considered a warm-up it may not go into the record books as the new standard to beat.
Barber has a chance to repeat his feat for the record books this weekend at the 3rd Annual Akron Pole Vault competition on the UA campus.
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(University of Akron) Akron junior pole vaulter Shawn Barber (Kingwood, Texas) jumped at record heights on Saturday as he established a new career-high mark of 19-3 (5.87 meters) to win the Texas Expo Vault competition.
Competing as an unattached jumper at the meet, Barber eclipsed the old collegiate indoor pole vault record of 19-2 1/4 (5.85 meters) set by Jacob Davis of Texas on March 6, 1999 in Indianapolis, Ind.
By virtue of participating as an unattached jumper, it is believed the record will not officially go down in the record books as the new standard for collegiate pole vaulters.
The mark did shatter Barber’s previous career-best mark of 18-10 1/4 (5.75 meters) set at the NCAA Indoor Championships on March 15, 2014.
“Shawn had a great fall of training,” Akron head track and field coach Dennis Mitchell commented. “This was a warm-up meet for the indoor season and was a great way to get ready for Pole Vault Convention. He will get pushed by three of the other best jumpers in the United States. This includes his rival Sam Kendricks, the USATF/NCAA Outdoor Champion, who was second down at the Texas Expo (18-9) to Barber. Kendricks does not like to lose, neither does Barber. Whenever those two get together amazing things happen. You do not want to miss this show.”
Barber will return to action this Saturday, Jan. 10, competing in a 13-person field at the third annual Akron Pole Vault Convention running from Friday, Jan. 9, through Sunday, Jan. 11, at the Stile Athletics Field House. The 13-man and 12-women elite competition is scheduled to get underway at 7 p.m.
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