LONDON (Reuters) – If Christian Taylor has his way, there will be a special present for Britain’s Jonathan Edwards and his son come Aug. 10.
After years of trying, the American double Olympic champion believes London’s World Athletics Championships may be the place he finally breaks Edwards’ 22-year-old triple jump world record.
“It would be very, very sweet to do it on Jonathan’s soil,” Taylor told a U.S. news conference on Thursday. “I know he is going to be watching.”
Edwards set the record of 18.29 meters at the 1995 championships in Gothenburg. He now works as a broadcaster and is expected to be in the London Stadium for Taylor’s jumps.
Taylor ranks second and third on the all-time list, bounding 18.21 meters at the 2015 world championships in Beijing and 18.11 meters in Oregon in May.
“I am very excited and I think it is possible,” the American said of the record, remarking that it was the only thing that keeps him jumping.
“He (Edwards) has given me some hints and things that maybe could help me get to this distance,” Taylor said.
“I have also heard this is his son’s birthday so I’d love to give him this gift.”
Edwards acknowledged the possible red letter day earlier this year.
“I think my world record could go there … I’ve looked at the schedule – Aug. 10. My son’s birthday … a double blow. That’ll be a bad birthday present, if he does break it,” Edwards said in March.
(Reporting by Gene Cherry; Editing by Alison Williams)