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The reality of Israel is much different than what Canadian pole vaulter Carly Dockendorf expected from what she sees on the news back home.
The recent graduate of the University of Washington was competing in her first international competition at the Israeli Track and Field Championships Wednesday night at Hadar Yosef and was very happy to participate.
"It is amazing to vault here," said Dockendorf. "It is a beautiful stadium. The runway is fast and it's exciting to jump somewhere other than Canada or the United States."
The young athlete placed first and well ahead of the rest of the field with a jump of 4.17m. She attempted to set a personal best of 4.30m but was unable to pass the marker by her final attempt.
Dockendorf is from Vancouver, Canada, where the national record is 4.51m and she still has a way to go before passing that mark, although she is currently among the top four Canadian female pole vaulters.
Dockendorf said that she was a bit nervous to come here but that what she has found has been very beautiful.
"All you see on the TV are bombings, but it is really nice here," said Dockendorf. "Israel has been amazing and hopefully we can come back here again next year."
Dockendorf came to Israel with two Americans, world indoor champion Brad Walker, who won the men's pole vault on Tuesday, and Pat Licari, who coaches them both.
Following the event, Dockendorf only had positive things to say about her experience in Israel.
"Everything was really well organized and everyone was taking care of us so well," said Dockendorf. "I am very impressed."