The athlete achieves the seventh medal for Spain in a contest in which Yulimar Rojas set a new world record (15.67)
Knowing when, how and where to be in shape is a science with a part of knowledge, of course, but also of feeling. Mentalization needs it, especially in tests that are one jump, or three in one, bundled together in an instant. It’s like the colt, like the penalty … Doubt is the main enemy. Ana Peleteiro, 25, has not. Right or wrong, but no doubt. It is so, for sports and for life. A thunder. Hence a champion, tuned by another, Ivn pedroso, which has built the village of Astrix de los Saltadores in Guadalajara, with the best ever and the best of ours on the triple pit. In Tokyo he collects a gold and a world record (15.67), from Yulimar Rojas, woman with legs to infinity, athlete’s legs, and a bronze for a Spanish woman who, today, everything tastes like gold.
On the track I savored it as if it were crowded. A few hundred is thousands when dreaming. The Atlantic echo of Ribeira reached the heavy atmosphere of Tokyo. When the sixth attempt came, the last one, it was already known on the podium, after that 14.87, 14 centimeters above the record with which he reached the Games. He hadn’t been the only one, since earlier, on the second try, he had gone to 14.77. So palme, she asked the assistants, other athletes, to follow her. The Covid, the damn Covid, was not going to take away his moment. Not better the above. It no longer mattered. To the 25 years, has time ahead and a great room for improvement, especially in his second jump. Pedroso knows it.
The Galician woman has perfectly followed the logbook of the former Cuban champion, which indicates that when, where and how: in the final of some Games and beyond her own limit. To reach the podium, he had to beat his absolute record for Spain twice, from 14.73 to 14.77 and 14.87, and three times, the best mark that had jumped in the open air, by improving with 14.63 from the 14, 62 of the rating. By Friday he already realized that he was ready. The Spaniard flew like never before in a final of exceptional level, the best in some Games, including a world record, in which the second, the Portuguese Patricia Mamona, and the third, Peleteiro, each beat their national records twice. The Portuguese, which starts from a personal record of 14.66, went to 14.91 and 15.01. The 15-meter club has a new member. The Spanish is far away, but after Tokyo, nothing seems impossible.
Peleteiro started with 14.55 to go to 14.77 on the second attempt and take third position, but for a short time. The jamaican Shanieka ricketts I snatched it from him with a fourth attempt of 14.84. The brand seemed unattainable, but it was only for those of us who watched, not for her. The next, in the fifth, Peleteiro surpassed him by three centimeters.
The final did not end with his attempt, no. Peleteiro felt like his own the last jump of Rojas in search of the world record. She is his training partner, something that sister more than the nationalities in this sport that applauds the athlete more than the flag. There are no ‘hooligans’ in an athletic ring. The Venezuelan had stayed in a great first attempt of 15.41. From there to nowhere. It was an inch shorter than his personal best, but what he had never missed in a Games. It was not enough for him. He knew he had the record on his legs, he felt it, and he took the last attempt as if it were the last time. The flight made Peleteiro put his hands to his head. Pedroso open your eyes after your mask. Rojas went to those 15.67 that improved the 15.50 of Inessa Kravets, an inheritance dating back to 1995.
While Rojas becomes the heroine of her country, unfortunately instrumentalized, Peleteiro is the third Spanish woman to achieve an Olympic medal in athletics, after the marcher Mara Vasco (bronze in Sydney in 20 km) and Ruth Beitia (gold in height in Ro). All medals shine the same but are not worth the same. That of Peleteiro, who had already been European champion indoor, arrives in the stadium and in the best triple final of the Games, because she knew where, when and how to be better than herself.