You know, there are weekends of track and field and there are Wonder weekends. Last weekend, dear readers, was a wonder weekend. Each day of the US Champs had great moments, but consider the shot put. Consider the sixth round and the last two throws.
Joe Kovacs was sitting in second place, with a throw of 21.93 meters. Ryan Crouser had been leading since attempt one, where Ryan had thrown 21.82 meters. In attempt three, Crouser cranked a 22.02 meters, and in round five, threw 22.01 meters. He was looking pretty darn good.
Joe Kovacs had throw 21.93 meters on his fifth attempt.
But, the fireworks began with two throws left in the competition. Joe Kovacs puts the shot 22.35 meters! Kovacs goes nuts, the shot put fans cheer, and a very emotional Ryan Crouser gets into the ring. The announcer makes sure everyone knows that this is the very last throw, the very last attempt for Ryan Crouser, and that Kovacs may have stolen the title from Crouser with his last 22. 35 meters.
Ryan Crouser responded with a 22.65 meters, the farthest throw in fourteen years, taking the title on the very last throw. Crouser was quite effusive after the throw, and the crowd went nuts.
This, kind readers, is why I love field events such as the long jump, triple jump and shot put. One athlete does his or her thing, and the last attempt is upon them, how does the athlete react? That is a champion. Kovacs and Crouser are amazing performers, and when the shot put gets its due, and the athletes are ready, you see performances like Sunday in Sacramento, Fast and Furious in the Shot Put Ring.
Here’s how Brian Eder caught the moment: