GREENVILLE — Landon Kemp continues to rewrite the Michigan pole vaulting record books.
The Greenville High School senior broke the Michigan Indoor Track Series (MITS) record for pole vaulting, clearing 13 feet, 6 inches at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids Saturday.
The previous record was 13 feet.
Last year, Kemp set a new Michigan High School Athletics Association finals meet and Lower Peninsula Division 1 meet record with a vault of 13 feet, 4 inches.
The MITS record, she believes, was even more impressive considering the lack of practice she had leading up to the weekend event.
“With playing basketball and the (pole vault) club I’m in being an hour away, I haven’t been practicing much lately,” Kemp said. “So I was pretty excited when I got the record.”
Kemp is in a club in Nashville, Michigan, operated by her pole vault coach, Jerry Sessions, called Landon’s Athletics. Kemp said the name of the club is just coincidental to her name, as it is named after Sessions’ grandchild.
“I think Landon did an awesome job. She has this quiet fight inside her to succeed,” Sessions said. “I noticed that the first time that I seen her compete (when she was) in fifth grade and it stayed with her and she keeps developing it so that she can complete her goals.”
Before setting the new MITS record, Kemp vaulted 13 feet and cleared it, which gave her the confidence that she could break the record.
“I was pretty excited going into it and I just told myself I better make it a good one when I went for it,” she said. “In pole vaulting, everything happens in a split second, it goes fast. But when I took off from the ground, it felt different to me and I had this ‘oh, my gosh’ feeling. I wanted to break this record.”
Kemp, the 2016 state pole vault champion, committed to the University of South Dakota in November, where she will continue her career.
With one more year of high school track and field, Kemp said she’s not done yet trying to rewrite the record book, stating she aims to break her own records again.