© Copyright – 2014 – Athletics Illustrated
One of Canada’s best chances for a gold medal during the track and field (athletics) portion of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games lies with Corunna, Ontario’s Derek Drouin and his ability to high jump near or at his best.
Drouin earned bronze medals at both the 2012 London Olympics Games and at the 2013 IAAF World Championships that took place in Moscow, Russia. With his jump of 2.38m he set a national record for Canada. He went on to better that height to 2.40 metres during the 2014 track and field season. Doing so, he became the 10th man in the world all-time to clear that height in outdoor competition.
Drouin had an excellent varsity career as well. He won five NCAA Division one titles. The six foot, five inch 24-year-old competed for the Indiana Hoosiers. He won many awards as well as becoming the second Hoosier to win NCAA titles in both indoor and outdoor track and field and is the first ever five-time NCAA high jump champion. He is a two-time OFSAA gold medallist.
In 2012, before the London Games, Drouin told Athletics Illustrated, “Once you’re in the final, anything can happen. I feel that if I jump the way I know I can, and everything goes well, a top-5 placing wouldn’t be out of the question.” He ended up winning the bronze medal in a three-way tie.
Drouin is currently ranked number four in the world for the 2014 season. The four other competitors (listed below) do not compete for Commonwealth countries, so he will not face them in Glasgow.
Bohdan Bondarenko 2.42 Ukraine UKR
Mutaz Essa Barshim 2.42 Qatar QAT
Ivan Ukhov 2.41 Russia RUS
Derek Drouin 2.40 Canada CAN
Andriy Protsenko 2.40 Ukraine UKR
Only 10 high jumpers have jumped higher than Drouin in history, with several of the heights accomplished repeatedly by the same athletes, for example Javier Sotomayor of Cuba owns the three highest jump heights of 2.45, 2.44 and 2.43m.Seventeen times Sotomayor is listed as jumping higher than Drouin. Boderenko is listed ahead of Drouin three times; granted Drouin’s international career is still very young.
Drouin owns the highest jump in the Commonwealth all-time.