The writing was on the wall ever since that startling early winter new British record of 4.71m off only 12 strides in Orleans, France, that a new astoeroid was to impact and send shockwaves around the rarefied spheres of women’s pole vault.

After a ‘mortal interlude’ of a narrow-winning 4.52 in Clermont Ferrand, it was in the skies of Lyonnais (Lyon), a legendary domain of King Arthur, that new sensation Holly Bleasdale rocketed high and blazed brightly over a  massive British milestone of 4.87m to fulfil the foretelling.

Holly Bleasdale rockets over a stunning new UK milestone of 4.87m in Lyon

Insofar as that she even came to overshadow the season premiere of vault queen Yelena Isinbayeva (RUS), who had earlier on the day got off to a solid return 4.70m in Volgograd.

Even more astonihingly, she was still operating off a 14-stride run-up pattern which lends her exploits an even more frightening aspect and suggests there is a lot more to come, daring the until very recently unthinkable and unspeakable for a Brit; raise the bar at a would-be world record height of 5.01m at the end.

The mind-boggling question is ever hanging around and speculation fired up, what regions she can reach once she  gets into her full stride and peaks later into the season? Well, this girl looks as though she could really stretch the imagination and leap into uncharted territories touching the boundaries of the fictional. But maybe, just maybe, Britain could gain a new world record holder literally out of the woodwork down the season.

For that matter, Bleasdale landed not only one but three British records in quick succession through a string of impressive first-time clearances; getting off over 4.72 to eclipse her pre-event marker, moving on to a massive follow-up of 4.80 to topple Silke Spiegelburg (4.77) off the top of the world rankings and wrapping up a wonder evening by stretching her new-gained global lead a further 7 cm in her final effort amid a buzz in the stands.

To draw her feat into perspective, that 4.87m landmark represents the second highest mark ever set indoors behind Isinbayeva’s own world record of 5m sharp and occupies fourth spot overall with outdoor and indoor all-time lists combined – Jenn Suhr (4.92) and Svetlana Feofanova (4.88) are the only others to have gone higher in any environment.

Bleasdale attempts a world indoor record at 5.01m

On the ground of a competition turning soon into a Bleasdale vs the bar affair, former UK record holder Kate Dennison made her first appearance since a serious injury sustained in qualification in Daegu to pick up 4.34m for runner-up on countback, tied with a fast-improving Sally Peake who shadowed her week-old Wales indoor record by a single cm. Both failed to register the next stop at 4.44m next.

Rising U20 star Katie Byres, who looks to be striding on the blazing trail of Bleasdale, could not emulate the exploits of her previous two outings on French soil and had to make do with just 4.14m, a figure also shared by Bryony Raine for second place in the B group (SB) where Henrietta Paxton struggled again down at only 3.89m.

There was further good news for Julien Raffalli‘s camp as Andrew Sutcliffe, world U20 bronze medallist in Moncton, rose over a huge PB of a third-time 5.54m to smash his former figure of 5.36 in winning the B competition and move 11th overall in the combined British all-time rankings. At this pace, he could emerge as a serious contender for an Olympic spot himself in London.

U23 Nick Crutchley and Scot Gregor McLean were 9th and 10th respectively on countback at a SB of 5.19 level with with athletes up to sixth place while Commonwealth surprise bronze medallist Max Eaves was reduced to same height in the main group won by Greek Kostas Filippidis on an equal indoor national record of 5.72m.

Local favourite Romain Mesnil was second on countback from Chinese Yangsheng Yang thanks to a first-time clearance at 5.54m.

Full Results

Away from France, new Scottish U20 record holder Jax Thoirs placed seventh at another pole vault-oriented meet in Gothenburg with 5.05m, his second best ever.