Athlete of the Month for June 2021
Yulimar Rojas is a Venezuelan Olympian athlete who was born on October 21, 1995. In triple jump, she is a two-time Olympic silver medalist (2016 Rio de Janeiro), two-time World Champion (2017 London and 2019 Doha), and two-time World Indoor Champion (2016 Portland and 2018 Birmingham). Her personal best is 15.43 meters, which is also the world indoor record. In Andjar, Spain, she duplicated her personal best of 15.43.
When 20-year-old Arnoldo Devonish won bronze in the triple jump at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics, he became Venezuela’s first Olympic medalist in any event. Another 20-year-old, Yulimar Rojas, aspires to become Venezuela’s next Olympic medalist, again in the triple jump, in a reinforcement of history’s cyclical tendency.
Her start in the sport was not simple. Yulimar and her family lived in a “ranchito,” a shanty house built of bricks with a zinc roof that can be seen in many impoverished neighborhoods throughout Venezuela.
Yulimar promised that she would save her best for Rio 2016, but little over a month later, at the Madrid meeting, she dispelled some of her doubts with a leap of 15.02m, launching a thrilling rivalry between the two South Americans in the Olympic Games.