Decathlon 2000 › News › Looking back at the Rio Olympic Decathlon – a number of facts
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Looking back at the Rio Olympic Decathlon – a number of facts (1)

Chris Vlamynck
Aug 24, 2016

*At Talence 2013 I remember a reporter telling Ashton Eaton “I know who will challenge you … that guy there” (showing Kevin Mayer). In a laconic way he moved his shoulders in the air and answered like he always does, if that was the subject,  “Well if he can put everything together etc.” That’s what Kevin Mayer did, putting everything together and Eaton won’t underestimate Mayer from now on, because Mayer doesn’t exclude the possibility of the world record for the future. With his enormous potential Ashton Eaton could have tried to put the world record much higher in the past. Instead he took even an interruption of a year to do the 400 hurdles.

*World record holder pole vault Renaud Lavillenie was supporting Kevin Mayer during the pole vault sitting next to his coaches in the crowd. Kevin had a problem with his Achilles tendon during that competition.

*Kevin Mayer has the all-time best second place in a decathlon with 8834 points. Bryan Clay’s score was best second before him at the Olympics in Athens in 2004 with 8820. Apparently there’s need of an Olympic record to be better, as well in Rio as in Athens. Kevin jumped 313 points forward from 8521 to that 8834 after two years of injuries and trouble.

*The difference between Eatons potential and his result was 656 points (9549-8893). For Kevin Mayer it was 194 points (9028-8834). Kevin his best years are still to come. He’s 24 years old (10/02/92).

Kevin Mayer, silver medalist with 8834 points. 6th Decathlete All Time!

*In an interview Mayer said he slept only four hours between the decathlon days.

*Mayer broke the European record for the second day and he is the second best ever Decathlete in that respect with 4399 points. The world record is from Dave Johnson. He surpassed twice the 4400 barrier (4411 and 4455 both in 1992).

*Thomas van der Plaetsen had the best score ever for a series of jumps at the Olympic Games. 2963 points (LJ 760/HJ 216/PV 540). This is the 3th best performance ever in its kind. Tom Pappas (2985) and Ashton Eaton (2974) in other competitions. At his third attempt in the long jump at the board he had the feeling for something extra but he broke his shoe! He was very pleased to run under the 50 seconds in the 400. That was he’s first minus 50 since his cancer surgery.

*Two Olympic record holders with the same result at the same time never happened before (Roman Sebrle 2004 / Ashton Eaton 2016).

The 3 only winners of a back to back Olympic Decathlon Title. Bob Mathias 1948/1952, Daley Thompson 1980/1984, Ashton Eaton 2012/2016. On their second participation each with an Olympic record. World record for Bob and Daley.

*“Invincible” Eaton became the man of the adrenaline-third-try to get out of big big trouble. Third best tries: 201 in high jump and not higher, in the pole vault: 490 at 3th, 510 at 3th, 520 at 3th. Starting with the javelin almost twelve meters short of Mayer’s 65.04 he wasn’t even in the pole position anymore. 3th and his best try: 59.77. Many times spectators thought the same would happen as in the heptathlon (the Nafissatou Thiam syndrome) with the gold for Mayer as outsider. We have to admit, Eaton is mentally strong and a real fighter.

*First time at the Olympics – 11 scores 8300 or more.

*African record for Larbi Bourrada (8521 points).

* Warner 30 points under his Canadian record, next try in Talence?

*Multi eventers are not strong enough in particular events? Nafissatou Thiam and Katarina Johnson-Thompson jumped higher (198) in the heptathlon than the Gold medalist Ruth Beitia in the high jump final (197).

Chris Vlamynck for Decathlon 2000

Comments (1)

Thomas wrote on Aug 26, 2016
There is a little typo: Mayer's previous PB was 8521 and not 8512
Although his ceiling is clearly lower than Eaton's (he will never clock 10.30 over 100 or 45 over 400 nor will be jump 8.23m), but he has this genuine ability to deliver when it matters the most. His best performance of the year is always close to the sum of all his SBs.
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