For the first time since the 2000 Summer Olympics the U.S. has won two medals in the men’s shot put competition, with Ryan Crouser taking gold and Joe Kovacs silver.
Crouser’s fifth attempt of the night measured 73 feet, 10 ¾ inches (22.52 meters), both winning him the gold medal and establishing a new Olympic record. Kovacs, whose first attempt of the day measured 71 feet, 5 ½ inches (21.78 meters) and was good enough to take silver, looked to pass that the mark established by Crouser but fell short.
WATCH: Crouser, Kovacs take gold, silver in the shot put
Crouser did take his sixth attempt in hopes of both surpassing his newly established Olympic record and making a run at the world record (23.12 meters), taking advantage of what was essentially a “free attempt.” Crouser’s final attempt of the night measured 21.74 meters, with his Olympic record put surpassing the mark of 73 feet, 8 ¾ inches set by Ulf Timmermann of (formerly) East Germany in 1988.
The U.S. has won at least one medal in the men’s shot put in every Summer Olympics with the exception of three: 1936, 1976 and 1980, with the nation having boycotted those 1980 Olympics in Moscow. With Michelle Carter taking gold in the women’s shot put the U.S.accomplished the sweep, and both attended the University of Texas.
Taking bronze was New Zealand’s Tomas Walsh, that nation’s first medalist in the men’s shot put. Valerie Adams won three medals in the women’s shot put, taking gold in 2008 and 2012 and silver in Rio.