It was in Turin 12 months ago that Teddy Tamgho first made himself known to Jonathan Edwards.
"I introduced myself and told him I was going to break his world record," the young French triple jumper recalled. At the time, it was a bold statement to make; Tamgho (right) had just failed to register a valid mark in the qualifying round at the European Indoor Championships. One year on, the track world is suddenly considering the prospect of the 20-year-old Parisian eclipsing Edwards's hitherto untouchable global outdoor mark of 18.29m, set in Gothenburg in 1995.
With his last-round effort in the final event of the World Indoor Championships on Sunday, Tamgho brought a stunning climax to three days of competition in the Aspire Dome by snatching the gold medal and shattering the world indoor triple jump record. His effort, a mighty 17.90m, was a 7cm improvement on the previous record, held jointly by Aliecer Urrutia of Cuba and Christian Olsson of Sweden.
Tamgho, who first showed his potential as winner of the world junior title in 2008, was left pondering: "If I can do this at 20, I can do so much better when I get older." Which is not exactly the best of news for Phillips Idowu, the Briton who decided not to defend his world indoor crown in Doha – and who, at 31, boasts a lifetime best of 17.75m. All of a sudden, the hop, step and jump has a new golden boy with the London Olympics approaching.
"I study all of Jonathan Edwards's jumps on video," Tamgho said. "Technically, he is the one who has approached the model of perfection. But in the next decade I think there will be a revolution in the triple jump." A French revolution, peut-être?Reuse content