USA’s World Record Triumph and Crouser’s Shot Put Victory Shine Bright on Opening Day of World Athletics Championships
The opening day of the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23 was highlighted by the United States of America’s world record run in the mixed 4x400m and Ryan Crouser’s second shot put title.
In the final track event of the evening, Team USA, led off by Justin Robinson, second-leg runner Rosey Effiong, Matthew Boling, and Alexis Holmes, completed a world-record-setting performance, clocking in at 3:08.80. However, the race was not without its share of drama. Femke Bol, leading in the final 50 meters for the Netherlands and seemingly on the verge of victory, was overtaken before falling to the track.
Nevertheless, Holmes’s performance as the anchor was exceptional. She stated competing against Femke Bol was undoubtedly challenging. “It was definitely tough to run against Femke Bol. She is an amazing athlete, but I believe in myself, so I just went out there and did the best I could,” explained Holmes.
“It is amazing. We came here with the goal to execute it, we got the gold, and we are happy,” said Holmes.
In the shot put, Crouser, who had emerged from the morning session with the seventh-best mark of 21.48, maintained a lead from his initial throw in the final. His first throw measured 22.63, followed by 22.98 on his second attempt. Despite missing marks on his fourth and fifth throws, he sealed his triumph with a remarkable 23.51 distance on his sixth and final attempt. The USA also secured bronze through Joe Kovacs, recording a throw of 22.12, while Italy’s Leonardo Fabbri took the silver medal with a distance of 22.34.
Reflecting on Saturday’s victory, which came tantalizingly close to his world record of 23.56m, Crouser stated it was “a tough one.”
Having coped with blood clots in his leg for nearly three weeks, Crouser shared, “The final throw was a testament to the unwavering hard work and dedication of the past year. The recent days were challenging, and considering all that unfolded, it was an exceptional throw. These past 20 days have been the most stressful of my life. A week before my departure, I woke up with calf pain. Initially thought to be a partial tear, the condition persisted. After 10 days with no improvement, a doctor confirmed two blood clots. My training plans were disrupted, but I managed to find a way to make it here. I was fortunate to have an exceptional medical team supporting me, ensuring a safe journey.”
In the meantime, Jamaicans Oblique Seville and Jaydon Hibbert enjoyed a promising opening day.
Hibbert’s 17.70 Triple Jump is the farthest distance recorded in the World Championships qualifying round, surpassing former Swedish Olympic triple jump champion Christian Olsson’s 17.56m mark from 2003.
Seville secured a leading position in the men’s 100m semi-finals with a time of 9.86. American Fred Kerley, the defending champion, achieved a time of 9.99, securing qualification just behind Seville.
Seville expressed his surprise, stating, “I’m truly amazed by that. I never anticipated such a performance in the initial round. Achieving that time boosts my confidence for the upcoming rounds.”
Regarding his own performance, Kerley mentioned, “The first round was about pacing myself, but I needed to stay composed after a few false starts. I’m relieved I managed to maintain my focus.”
In the women’s heptathlon, American Anna Hall leads with 3,998 points, with the long jump, javelin throw, and 800m events still to come.
BY: ANTHONY FOSTER FOR NACAC ATHLETICS