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Most successful female pole vaulters at the Summer Olympics

Yelena Isinbaeva
Yelena Isinbaeva
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Modified 17 Feb 2021
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Pole vault at the Summer Olympics comes under the track and field events held at the Games. While men's pole vault has been a part of the Summer Olympics since 1896, women's pole vault was added to the program only in 2000.

With the Tokyo Games a few months away, let's take a look at the 5 most successful female pole vaulters at the Summer Olympics.

(Note - Ranking is based on the gold medal count. If athletes have an equal number of gold medals, then the number of silver medals, and further bronze medals, have been used as the deciding factors for the rankings).


#3 - Stacy Dragila - USA - 2000

(Ranking - Athlete - Country - Years of Olympic Participation)

Total - 1 (Gold - 1, Silver - 0, Bronze - 0)

Stacy Dragila
Stacy Dragila

American Stacy Dragila won the gold medal when women's pole vault made its Olympic debut at the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney. She vaulted to a height of 4.60m.

Dragila was unfortunately injured before the Athens Olympics in 2004 and the Beijing Olympics in 2008, and did not qualify for those Games.

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#3 - Ekaterini Stefanidi - Greece - 2012, 2016

Total - 1 (Gold - 1, Silver - 0, Bronze - 0)

Ekaterini Stefanidi of Greece at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games
Ekaterini Stefanidi of Greece at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games

Greece's Ekaterini Stefanidi stood atop the podium at the most recent Summer Olympics in 2016. She won the gold with a vault of 4.85m in Rio de Janeiro.


#2 - Jennifer Suhr - USA - 2008, 2012, 2016

Total - 2 (Gold - 1, Silver - 1, Bronze - 0)

Gold medalist Jennifer Suhr of the United States (L) and bronze medalist Yelena Isinbaeva of Russia pose on the podium at the London 2012 Olympic Games
Gold medalist Jennifer Suhr of the United States (L) and bronze medalist Yelena Isinbaeva of Russia pose on the podium at the London 2012 Olympic Games

American Jennifer Suhr won silver at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing with a vault of 4.80m. Suhr went one better to claim the gold at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London with a vault of 4.75m.


#1 - Yelena Isinbaeva - Russia - 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012

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Total - 3 (Gold - 2, Silver - 0, Bronze - 1)

Yelena Isinbaeva at the London 2012 Olympic Games
Yelena Isinbaeva at the London 2012 Olympic Games

Yelena Isinbaeva claimed her first Olympic title in Athens in 2004 with a world record of 4.91m. One year later, the Russian became the first female vaulter to break the 5m barrier.

At the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, she won her second gold with a vault of 5.05m.

After a two-year break in 2010 and 2011, Isinbaeva returned to the sport to claim an Olympic bronze medal at the London Games. She is the only female pole vaulter to win 3 Olympic medals.

Published 17 Feb 2021, 20:31 IST
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