No medal for pole vault de­fend­ing cham­pion shawn Barber

North Bay Nugget - - DRIVING - Lori Ewing

Lon­don — shawn Barber will be leav­ing the world track and field cham­pi­onships empty-handed.

the Cana­dian pole vaulter failed to de­fend his gold medal to­day af­ter miss­ing all three at­tempts at 5.75 me­tres.

the 23-year-old from toronto won gold two years ago in Bei­jing.

But he has been in­con­sis­tent this sea­son as he has tin­kered with his jump­ing style. he ar­rived in Lon­don with the 16th best jump in the world of 5.72 me­tres.

he missed his first at­tempt at 5.50 me­tres to­day and needed three tries to clear 5.65.

the last two years have pre­sented chal­lenges for Barber, who had a dis­as­trous com­pe­ti­tion at last sum­mer’s rio olympics as he strug­gled in heavy wind and rain en route to a 10th-place fin­ish.

a few months later, news broke that he had tested pos­i­tive for co­caine be­fore the olympics, but was spared a sus­pen­sion when an in­de­pen­dent ar­bi­tra­tor ruled Barber had ac­ci­den­tally in­gested the drug. Barber said it hap­pened while he was kiss­ing a woman.

Barber’s Cana­dian record is 5.93, which he set in 2015.

else­where, Matt hughes of oshawa, ont., was sixth in the 3,000-me­tre steeple­chase while Bran­don McBride of Wind­sor, ont., was eighth in the men’s 800. on the women’s side, Van­cou­ver’s Liz glea­dle was 12th in the women’s javelin while sage Wat­son of Medicine hat, alta., qual­i­fied for the fi­nal in the women’s 400-me­tre hur­dles and toronto’s Crys­tal em­manuel qual­i­fied for the semi­fi­nals in the women’s 200 me­tres.

Matthias sChradEr/THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Canada’s Shawn Barber holds a pole in the men’s pole vault fi­nal dur­ing the World Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onships in Lon­don Tues­day. Barber failed to de­fend his gold medal from 2016.

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