Feature | Athletics

Yulimar Rojas: Top things to know about the world champion triple jumper 

How tall is Yulimar Rojas? Who is her favourite super hero? Who is her biggest rival? Does she hold the world record? Answers to all those questions and more. 

By Ed Knowles ·

Yulimar Rojas of Venezuela is one of athletics’ true superstars. The triple jumper is a four-time world champion, an Olympic silver medallist, and has broken a world record.

She smashed the indoor world record in the run up to Tokyo 2020 with a jump of 15.43m in Madrid.

The women’s triple jump has been reenergised with Rojas’ rivalry with reigning Olympic champion Caterine Ibarguen of Colombia.

The pair both have big personalities – finding time to dance and smile throughout competition.

Above all, I’m a warrior - Yulimar Rojas on how she would describe herself

Don’t be fooled into thinking that they aren’t taking it seriously – Rojas is laser focused on succeeding at the top level.

She is targeting both a gold medal in Tokyo and, potentially, an outdoor world record.

“Despite all the medals and stuff, I think a world record in in my athletics career would be fantastic. I dream about that and I know dreams do come true. And I work every day to make it true,” she said to Olympic Channel.

Find out about her dancing on Instagram, her favourite superheroes, the reasons behind her steely mindset, and the respect she holds for rival Caterine Ibarguen.

Yulimar Rojas competes for Venezuela at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru

Yulimar Rojas: A Venezuelan hero

The Venezuelan public love Yulimar due to her incredible world-beating performances.

But also how she has beat the odds to topple many rivals with more resources at their disposal.

“I come from humble beginnings. I belong to a large family, six siblings, my father, my mother… living on a little farm with a lot of uncertainties,” Rojas said.

She believes this upbringing is directly related to her current success.

“Thanks to this I am a different Yulimar Rojas. It has helped me become a better version of myself. The adversities helped me believe in myself and my abilities.

Yulimar Rojas: A strong personality

With a beaming smile, distinctive hair styles hair, and height of 1.92m – it’s fair to say you can spot Rojas in a crowd.

Underneath the exterior, how would she describe herself?

Yulimar Rojas is brave, joyful, and a committed person. I’m always giving my best. And, above all, I’m a warrior.”

She also encourages others to follow her example.

“Little by little – I have achieved my dreams. Little by little - I’ve accomplished my goals,” she said to Olympic Channel.

“You can achieve anything. There is nothing you can’t accomplish if you push for it.”

Yulimar Rojas: My favourite superheroes

Rojas has heroes of her own from the comic book world.

“My favourite is Batman. I like him because of his personality and everything he does,” she said.

“Also, I’d say Wonder Woman because of the strength, the adrenaline, the power she has and what she does to save the world.

“In this sense, I’m a bit like a child. I love super heroes and I hope to be considered a super hero in my country and in the world.”

Women's Triple Jump Final | Rio 2016 | Great Olympic Moments

Caterine Ibargüen wins the Gold for Colombia, Yulimar Rojas the Silver for ...

Yulimar Rojas: Rivalry with Caterine Ibarguen

Both reigning world champion Yulimar Rojas and reigning Olympic champion Caterine Ibarguen look totally at home in an athletics stadium.

Both like to bust a move during competition.

“Dancing is one of my gifts. I love it. I believe that’s the way I release adrenaline. Dancing and competing go very well together and I feel good to put on a show,” Rojas said.

Their relationship is competitive and business-like.

“We are from sister countries, Colombia and Venezuela… There are a lot of expectations when we are both competing and I think that’s good for the sport.

“I admire her a lot . She’s an extraordinary athlete. She’s won a lot for herself and her country. But to be friends in this situation is a bit complicated because the rivalry is very big.”

Record breaker Rojas reacts to winning Pan American Games gold

After winning the triple jump title at Lima 2019, the Venezuelan was in ref...

Yulimar Rojas: LGBTQ+ Icon

With her rainbow emoji proudly displayed on her Instagram profile, Yulimar is open about her sexuality.

“My orientation has always been important to me and to my career. Since I started sports, I have always tried to fight for the ideologies and rights of women and the LGBT community,” Rojas, who lives in Spain, said in an interview with El Pais.

“It is also a leap for love and life to be respected, the desire to love and to be loved is respected, and human rights to be valued every day.”