Waimea College’s Adam Stack smashed the over-16’s high jump record this week, beating a record that was set by James Campion in 1986.


James set the record at 1.9 metres in 1986, a record he shared with Neil Gardener, Adam’s uncle. He still remembers the day in 1986.


“It was on the back field at Waimea College, and the whole school turned up to watch. It was a phenomenal day.”

“Neil bombed out, so I won the competition, but we just continued to see what we could set.

“They had to do it after lunch, and it was just on grass on the back field, so it’s a bit different to the turf they’re on at Saxton these days.”


For 34 years, his record was left untouched. Until this week.


“A few weeks ago, one of the staff got in touch with me and said, ‘Hey, we think someone is going to beat your record’ and looking at his [Adam’s] other records, it wasn’t surprising.”


That’s because Adam holds every other high jump record in the school.


“He’s consistently been getting closer and closer.


“I thought I better make sure I came down and saw it for myself,” James says.


At 2pm on Monday, at Waimea College’s athletics day at Saxton field, James’ longstanding record was shattered.
Almost with ease, Adam soared past James’ 1.9 metre record that had remained untouched for 34 years, breaking the record at 1.91m.


Keen to put a bit of distance between himself and James, Adam soared over the bar, setting a new record at 1.95m. For Adam, the new record was the payoff for a lot of hard work.


“I started jumping when I was probably about 10, and something really sparked in me at 12.


“It was a challenge, for sure.”


There was no doubt of consistency in the judging department, with Waimea College teacher Lee Smith, who judged the record in 1986, still judging 34 years later.


“It was fantastic to watch all those years ago, and great to see another athlete do so well.”


Waimea college principal Scott Haines says that he was ‘blown away’ by the performance of Adam.


“1.95, that’s taller than me. Absolutely phenomenal to see a student doing so well.”


James says he’s thrilled to see another athlete do so well.


“I’ve got mixed emotions,” says James, whose record was finally snatched from him.


“It’s a great achievement, and it was fantastic just to watch an athlete – and I use that word seriously, because he is a true athlete – like Adam perform.”


“I did jump on grass though, so I’ll hold on to that,” he laughs.

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