Yolanda Chen set a world indoor record of 49 feet, 3 3/4 inches
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) _ Yolanda Chen set a world indoor record of 49 feet, 3 3/4 inches today to win the women’s triple jump at the World Indoor Championships.
The 33-year-old Russian, the former indoor and outdoor world record-holder, became the first woman to surpass 15 meters _ which is 49-2 1/2_ indoors.
Chen broke the previous record of 48-10 3/4, set by Inna Lasovskaya of Russia at Lievin, France, on Feb. 17, 1994.
The record came on Chen’s third attempt and stood up for the gold medal. It was the first world record of the championships.
Iva Prandzheva of Bulgaria took the silver medal with a personal best of 48-3 1/4.
Ruiping Ren of China, 19, won the bronze with a world junior record 47-1 3/4. Seven of the eight finalists had jumps over 45 feet-11 1/4.
Eight other finals were on today’s program at the Palau Sant Jordi arena: men’s pole vault, women’s high jump, men’s long jump, women’s shot put, men’s 1,500 meters, men’s and women’s 200 and women’s 3,000.
In this morning’s heats, Britain’s Tony Jarrett had the fastest time in the 60-meter hurdles. Silver medalist at the 1993 world outdoors, Jarrett won his heat in 7.58 seconds to lead the qualifying.
In the absence of fellow Briton Colin Jackson, the world outdoor champion and world-record holder, Jarrett is a favorite for his first major title.
Courtney Hawkins, a late replacement on the U.S. team for Mark Crear, knocked down four of the five hurdles but still won his heat with the second-best qualifying time of 7.62 seconds.
Allen Johnson of the United States, the top hurdler of the indoor season, took his heat in 7.66 seconds, while Olympic champion and defending indoor titlist Mark McKoy of Austria qualified in 7.67.
In the women’s 60-meter hurdles, Olga Shishigina of Kazakhstan clocked 7.95 seconds for the fastest heat time. American Lynda Tolbert failed to qualify after aggravating an achilles injury and finishing last in her heat at 8.31 seconds.
In other events, Maria Mutola of Mozambique won her 800-meter semifinal in 2:03.28 to lead the field and stay on course for her 39th straight victory in the event.