Jade Bewster, the nation’s leading under-17 pole vaulter, smashed the Sussex Schools record on Saturday on her way to gold.
Horsham Blue Star Harriers athlete Jade vaulted 3.50metres at Crawley’s K2 Leisure Centre, adding 10 centimetres to the previous best mark, set by fellow Blue Star member Lucy Stickland three years ago.
Tanbridge House School pupil Jade, 15, leapt above Ailis McGovern two weeks ago at the Inter-Counties in Abingdon with a vault of 3.60m to go top of the under-17 UK rankings and set a personal best.
And in tricky conditions with Saturday’s high winds, Jade was delighted with her performance.
She said: “They were difficult conditions and I was really pleased considering it was so windy.
“It can be really tough because it’s difficult to control the pole and if you do not have a good take off, the vault does not happen.
“It was one of my aims to win at this competition, and I’m pleased to be in good form before I go to the English Schools Championships.”
When Jade competes at the English Schools in Gateshead in two weeks she will be using a new pole, in fact she is expecting delivery of the new 14-foot pole to replace the 13-foot one she used to break the Sussex record.
She added: “I’m aiming for a vault of 3.80m by the end of the year.
“I need the new pole to be competitive, all the other competitors have now moved on to a 14-foot pole and I need to move up to get higher.”