By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA
Fil-American pole vaulter Natalie Uy finished only fifth but was able to match her national record in the USA Track & Field Invitational (USATF) in Prairie View, Texas on Tuesday, May 25.
The reigning Southeast Asian Games champion cleared 4.30 meters on her first attempt to equal her PH mark set during the 2020 Acadia Invitational in Greenville, North Carolina.
Though she settled only fifth in the event won by American Morgann LeLeux (4.60m), it was Uy’s best effort to date following a wrist injury that required surgery.
Her feat also surpassed the SEAG record of 4.25m which she posted in the 2019 edition held at the New Clark City in Tarlac.
Uy attempted to clear 4.40m but failed.
Americans Kortney Ross and Olivia Gruver completed a 1-2-3 finish for the US bets with similar jump of 4.50m while Canada’s Anicka Newell came in fourth in 4.40m.
Uy is seeking a berth in the Tokyo Olympics, but needs to match or breach the Olympic standard of 4.70m.
There are already 24 athletes who have met the standard.