Saturday 19th June 2021
The “list of the bad guys” topped
Ryan Crouser amazes with a mega world record
Powerful announcement shortly before the Olympic Games: The American shot putter Ryan Crouser pulverized the ancient world record of his compatriot Randy Barnes. It is actually the first world record in a men’s throwing discipline in 25 years.
No sooner had the ball left his fingertips than Ryan Crouser knew where the journey was going. Roaring wildly, the colossus jumped through the ring and looked as if it wanted to devour the referee. After his fabulous world record of 23.37 meters, the insatiable US rider saved himself the dessert – to have erased the 31-year-old record of his compatriot Randy Barnes was enough for the Olympic champion for the time being. “I’ve wanted this world record for so long. Now a huge burden falls from me,” said the 28-year-old after he had set Barnes’ record three years older (23.12 meters) at the Olympic eliminations in Eugene by an insane quarter of a meter had outbid.
That record of the notorious anabolic steroids fraudster Barnes was considered one of those “eternal” values from the dark days of athletics. But Crouser, this low mountain range of humans (2.01 meters tall and an impressive 145 kilograms), had always seen himself within reach. He drew “23.13 meters” on his bathroom mirror with a felt pen, “so that I always have my goal in view”.
Before the trials, Crouser suspected that his time had come. “I knew there was strength and power. Now I just had to put it in the ball,” he said. He succeeded in the fourth attempt, when he pounded his 7.256 kilogram heavy equipment over the length of a tennis court to illustrate the width. What sounds unbelievable becomes hardly more comprehensible with further classification. Especially since Crouser’s world record line of ancestors consists of, at best, controversial and normally unmasked as a crook.
The “list of the bad guys” as a predecessor
Compatriot Barnes was banned twice for doping, whose predecessor Ulf Timmermann – Crouser’s role model, whom he studied in endless YouTube sessions – was heavily burdened as a model student of the GDR system, but insisted on his innocence. There was also plenty of discrediting material about his predecessor Alessandro Andrei (Italy). And Timmermann’s GDR comrade Udo Beyer, who was world record holder from 1978 to 1983, confessed to doping extensively.
In addition: Before Crouser’s moon landing, no athlete had set a world record in the four throwing disciplines in the open air for 25 years: those in hammer throw (Jurij Sedych from the Soviet Union) and discus throw (Jürgen Schult from the GDR) – both from 1986 – seem completely out of place Range, at least Johannes Vetter is currently nibbling on the javelin record of the Czech Jan Zelezny from 1996.
If a crouser then trumps the grotesque giants of the past, especially after a pandemic in which at least not fanatically controlled doping, are doubts justified? Well, there are also many sporting arguments in favor of the mighty American. He has perfected the rotary joint technique, despite his size is a marvel of movement and has been constantly developing at the highest level since 2016 – in January he broke Timmermann’s indoor world record with 22.82 m.
In any case, after the miracle that had been accomplished in Eugene, Crouser did not want to go into depth analytically. “I would now like to have a nice double-double hamburger first,” said the insatiable man. And had to think about new goals – hopefully the felt-tip pen was washable.