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Katie Nageotte talks about fashion, France and the little fame of pole vault

katie nageotte, pole vault

There are two ways to get an autograph from Katie Nageotte. You can see if hers is still on sale for $6, or you can just ask her.

Katie Nageotte is used to people knowing what the pole vault is, but not knowing who the pole vaulters are. Even when pole vaulters travel in packs, they do not have the star power even if they attract their share of attention.

When somebody strikes up a conversation with Nageotte, they usually do not know who she is or what it means to do what she does. She is used to having to explain a few things off the top.

“Any time a guy approaches me in a bar or a public setting, I’m flattered. I’m very flattered and I will absolutely have a conversation with them,” Nageotte said.

“Usually it’s ‘You’re a professional pole vaulter. What does that mean? Did you go to the Olympics?’ There’s no real recognition there because pole vaulting in the States is not a super popular, well-known sport. Typically it’s more ‘That’s cool, OK, I’ll get you that drink.’ Rarely is it ‘Oh my gosh, I recognize you.'”

Despite not being a household name, Katie Nageotte carries enough clout in the pole vault world that her autograph – once – came at a price. “One of my relatives found one of my autograph’s on-line for $6. They were trying to sell it for $6!”

Things pick up overseas where pole vault and pole vaulters are much more in the public eye. On a trip to Manchester, England, though, it was Nageotte’s turn to be star struck. At her hotel lobby, the passionate “Friends” fan spotted Courtney Cox.

After plenty of goading to summon up her courage and not let the chance pass by, Katie met Courtney. But is Katie Nageotte a Monica?

“No, I am absolutely not a neat freak. I’m not that high strung, at least I hope not. I’m more of a Rachel. A little more selfish, I’m really into the fashion, the shopping.”

Nageotte did a fashion-focussed semester in Paris as an undergrad, and has considered those possibilities for life after pole vaulting. Coaching is also pulling her, but those decisions are still a few years away.

“The thing I love about fashion is when you wear an outfit, it tells so many people so many things about you. You can make it whatever you want it to be, you can make yourself however you want to be.”

“I think the high-fashion world is a little intense for me. I appreciate it and I like it a lot. I’m so focused on the right now that I’m not giving too much thought to what I’m going to do when I’m done.”