Jonathan Edwards’ triple jump world record has stood for exactly 22 years, but Christian Taylor is optimistic he can finally surpass the famous mark of 18.29 metres at the 2017 IAAF World Championships.
Taylor – the reigning Olympic and world champion – breezed through qualifying on Monday and will be a strong favourite to claim victory in Thursday’s final.
The American already boasts the second and third longest jumps in history, his personal best of 18.21m having been set at the last World Championships in Beijing two years ago.
Having managed an 18.11m leap as recently as May, Taylor is high on confidence as he targets a third world title.
Asked about the prospect of breaking Edwards’ long-held world record, which was set at the 1995 World Championships in Gothenburg, the 27-year-old replied: “I hope it is my time. I am staying optimistic. I am chasing that number more than you could ever know.
“I’m feeling in really good shape, top shape.
“I talked to Jonathan, I asked him to rub off some of that magic on me. He’s told me that today is the 22-year anniversary. Everything is really [geared] towards that championship record, which would be the world record.”
Taylor only required one jump on Monday to book his place in the final, registering 17.15m with the minimum of fuss.
“Everything was a lot different to what it will be on Thursday,” he explained. “Today was just about getting the big Q, staying focused on that.”