You can call competitive pole vaulters in the state of Wisconsin a lot of things -- freakishly athletic, eccentric -- just don’t call them unoriginal or disorganized. In fact, if the video below proves anything, it’s that pole vaulters are the precise opposite of either of those characteristics.
As you can see, the 2013 Wisconsin Interscholastic Activities Association Division I pole vault championship stand was the somewhat surprising site for a rather involved, acrobatic dismount of sorts. After each player moved on to the medal stand with a hands-behind-the-back hop, they dismounted with one of the more choreographed celebrations you’ll ever see in track and field.
First, all of the medal winners except new champion and state record holder Jake Wallenfang completed a full backflip, landing squarely on their feet. Then, once they were all safely gathered on the ground, they arranged into a formation where they could safely catch Wallenfang.
That’s when Wallenfang trusted that there would be no hard feelings over his recent accomplishment, using a classic trust fall to come back to earth in his fellow pole vaulters’ arms.
The celebration appeared to earn the scorn of a WIAA meet official, though it received a much more positive reaction here at Prep Rally Central. Originality like that shouldn’t be scoffed at; it should be celebrated.
After all, when you can clear 16 feet in the pole vault like Wallenfang, you deserve a special send off to the season. On this occasion he clearly got just that.