Two-time Olympic champion Ryan Crouser has demolished his own shot put world record, throwing for 23.56m at the Los Angeles Grand Prix to eclipse second-placed New Zealander Tom Walsh.
American powerhouse Crouser easily surpassed his previous mark of 23.37m, which he achieved at the US Olympic Trials two years ago.
Crouser punched the air as he sent one ricocheting off the back barrier, reaching the milestone on his fourth attempt at the Continental Tour Gold event.
“I’m still on high volume (training), heavy throws in the ring and heavy weights in the weight room, so we’re just starting to work in some speed,” Crouser told NBC.
It was an auspicious performance for the 30-year-old, who has been working on a new throwing technique this year, with the World Championships less than three months away in Budapest.
New Zealand’s twice Olympic bronze medallist Walsh achieved a season-best throw of 22.12m to finish runner-up while American Payton Otterdahl was third with 21.99m.
At the same meet, New Zealand thrower Maddi Wesche finished fifth in the women’s shot put.
Wesche – a sixth placegetter at the Tokyo Olympics and bronze medallist at the last Commonwealth Games – achieved a best distance of 19.18m, which is 32cm short of her best, set in Oregon nine months ago.
World champion Chase Ealey was beaten into second place with a best throw of 19.98m, upset by compatriot and winner Maggie Ewen (20.45m).