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Mike Rosenbaum

2012 Track & Field Year in Review: Men's Throws

By January 2, 2013

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The world's top glide shot-putter, Poland's Tomasz Majewski, came through again in 2012, winning his second consecutive Olympic gold medal by edging Germany's David Storl. Majewski topped out at 21.89 meters (71 feet, 9ĺ inches), to Storl's 21.86/71-8Ĺ. American Reese Hoffa also had a solid year, winning five of the seven Diamond League meets to take home the overall championship. Hoffa gained the bronze medal in London and owned five of 2012's top eight throws. Christian Cantwell of the U.S. had the year's longest toss, measuring 22.31/73-2. Yet another American, Ryan Whiting, won the World Indoor Championship gold, beating Storl and Majewski.

To nobody's surprise, Robert Harting of Germany was the year's top discus thrower. He had the year's two longest throws, topping out at 70.66/231-9, and he threw 68.27/223-11 in the fifth round in London to snatch the Olympic gold away from runners-up Ehsan Hadadi and Gerd Kanter. Kanter, the defending Olympic champ, did capture the Diamond League title after winning three events. Virgilijus Alekna of Lithuania was also impressive in 2012. At age 40 he was the only thrower other than Harting to top 70 meters (70.28/230-6).

Keshern Walcott enjoyed the summer of a lifetime as he won the javelin World Junior Championship in July, then shocked his fellow Olympians by earning the gold medal in London. The 19-year-old from Trinidad & Tobago topped the Olympic field with a toss measuring 84.54/277-5, beating out Oleksandr Pyatnytsya from Ukraine and Finland's Antti Ruuskanen. Vitezslav Vesely of the Czech Republic was actually the longest Olympic thrower, but he suffered from bad timing as his world-leading toss of 88.34/289-9 occurred during qualifying. Vesely managed just a fourth place finish in the Olympic final, but he later took home the Diamond League championship as a consolation prize after a close battle with Pyatnytsya and Finland's Tero Pitkamaki.

Hungary's Krisztian Pars posted six of the year's top 10 hammer throws, and it was that sixth-best throw that did the trick in London, as the veteran of three Olympics took the gold with a toss of 80.59/264-4. Defending champion Primoz Kozmus of Slovenia and 2004 gold medalist Koji Murofushi of Japan took the silver and bronze, respectively. Ivan Tsikhan of Belarus owned the world's longest throw, reaching 82.81/271-8 in May.

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