Wlodarczyk shatters world record for hammer gold

Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:31pm EDT
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By Nick Mulvenney

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk underlined her absolute dominance of the women's hammer by throwing a world record 82.29 metres to win the Rio Olympic gold by an incredible 554 centimetres on Monday.

The only woman to have thrown the hammer further than 80 metres, the 31-year-old world champion had already broken the Olympic record with a second throw of 80.40 when she entered the ring for the third time.

Whipping the hammer around her body eight times before launching it into the sunny morning sky, Wlodarczyk was screaming in delight before the ball even pitched on the grass of the infield, well beyond the 80 metre tape.

It was far enough to better the mark of 81.08 she set in Cetniewo in Poland this month, as was her fifth throw of 81.74.

"Competition of my life," she told Poland's TVP. "After the first round I knew that I would get the gold medal and after the second one I went for it all. Massacre.

"I think that no one made such a surprise during Olympics. I was close to beating the record for the second time. I didn't want to hold back.

"I thought, this is that day. It was worth giving it a go, because you never know if it's going to happen again - parents in the stands, fans cheering ... I think I'm the happiest woman in the world right now."

Unbeaten since June 2014, Wlodarczyk now owns the 11 best throws of all time. Her winning margin was by far the largest in the history of the women's event.   Continued...

2016 Rio Olympics - Athletics - Final - Women's Hammer Throw Final - Olympic Stadium - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 15/08/2016. Anita Wlodarczyk (POL) of Poland competes. REUTERS/Phil Noble