Ryan Crouser was the No. 2 qualifier in men’s shot put at Thursday’s Diamond League meet in Monaco, and after the final he was alone at No. 1.
Crouser, the 2016 Olympic champion, put up a throw of 22.05 meters in the fourth round and didn’t need to throw again as nobody else in the field came close, including New Zealand’s Tomas Walsh, who was the No. 1 qualifier and is the reigning world champion. Crouser’s U.S. teammate and the 2018 national champion Darrell Hill set a season’s best 21.72 as he finished in second place.
Brazil’s Darlan Romani was third with a throw of 21.70. Walsh finished a disappointing fifth. The top seven throwers all went over 21 meters.
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Crouser, from Boring, Oregon, was a first-time Olympian at the Olympic Games Rio 2016. He broke the Olympic record with a throw of 22.52 meters en route to the gold medal. The result in Monaco is his fourth win in 2018, and he is the second-ranked men’s shot putter in the world. He set his season’s best mark of 22.53 at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, Oregon.
In the women’s shot put that was also held Thursday, 2016 Olympian Raven Saunders finished second with a season-best throw of 19.67 meters.
The competition in Monaco continues with 11 events on Friday.
Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.