And to think that the competition had started rather badly!
In Torun (Poland), Angelica Moser became the European indoor pole vault champion on Saturday evening, erasing a bar installed at 4.75 meters. She needed three tries to pass 4.60 meters, then 4.65 meters, and it was not forbidden to think that the pressure of the big meeting was pressing on the nerves of the 23-year-old Zurich. But she equaled her record of 4.70 meters on the first try and, while the silver medal seemed promised to her behind the Slovenian Tina Sutej, she made the most beautiful flight of her career to claim gold. “It’s crazy”, she reacted to the microphone of her federation under a mask which hid her smile badly.
Crazy? Obviously a little, when we consider that this is only the 27th Swiss title in a major athletics event (Olympic Games, World and European Championships indoors and outdoors). He is also the very first, men and women alike, in pole vault. National record holder Nicole Büchler ended her career climbing 4.80 meters under the Doha stars in 2016, but never on a major podium.
This has already been done for her heiress, who, moreover, is only five inches from her Swiss record… But Nicole Büchler herself encourages the company: she has coached Angelica Moser ad interim between the withdrawal of his long-time coach Herbert Czingon and the start of the term of Frenchman Damien Inocencio.
And then hey, “crazy”, the result of the young woman is ultimately not that much for those who follow her career from the beginning. This is obviously her first medal in an elite individual competition, but she cultivated a serious habit of adorning herself with gold in the emerging competitions: at the 2013 Youth Olympic Festival, at the 2014 Youth Olympic Trials & Games, at the European Under-20 Championships in 2015, at the Under-20 World Championships in 2016, at the European Under-23 Championships in 2017 and 2019.
In Torun, Angelica Moser perfectly embodied the ambition of a Swiss delegation larger than ever (23 members) and turned towards the future (nine athletes under 23). For her part, with her jump to 4.70 meters, she achieved the qualifying minimums for the Tokyo Olympics. With that of the title, she became the fifth best world “performer” of the indoor season.
Fight against bulimia
But there is more madness than these figures, these statistics, these updated tables. The Zurich native has accomplished the greatest feat of her career to date after a year shaken up by her fight against bulimia, an eating disorder that she truly accepted as such last spring, placed in front of her- even by semi-containment. And on which she decided to speak openly.
In January, in a long interview given to the Zurich’s new era, she told of the insidious switch from the penchant she had always had for sweets towards a form of addiction. The fact that she ate a lot between meals, sometimes as a reward, sometimes out of frustration, sometimes because she was bored. And then the therapy, started in May 2020, which allowed him to have regained, in September, “control of the situation”. She has had some ups and downs since then, but no serious relapses.
On the other hand, she received many messages, “generally positive”, saluting her courage in the face of this widespread but often deadly problem. “Many young female athletes have also written to tell me that they have similar problems and ask if I can give them some advice,” the 23-year-old explained. And so, there is no miracle: “The most important thing is to admit to yourself that you have a problem. And that we need help. That’s when things changed for me. ”
And that’s how she began her run-up to her title of European champion.