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The new era of discus throw

It is a well known fact, that Discus Throw is an event for older and more experienced athletes. It is not very common to win a championships medal before age 23. For example, if we look at the legendary discus throwers, then Alekna won his first medal at age 25, Kanter 26, Malachowski 25, Schult 27 and Riedel 24, Harting 23.

The era of Kanter-Harting-Malachowski
Kanter, Harting and Malachowski have won 26 championships medals combined in discus throw - that is spectacular number and they have ruled the event since 2005.

When we look at the statistics from season 2017, then we can say, that this year the new generation took over the lead in discus throw. Discus throw was dominated this year by the athletes born between 1990-1994 - Ståhl, Gudzius, Dacres, Finley, Milanov

Just for a comparison - Milanov got his first medal age 24 in 2015, Gudzius 26, Finley 27, Ståhl 24. So the statistics fall in place for those guys when compared with the legends of this event.

Diamond League Race had 5 meets in 2017 season - Milanov won in Shanghai, Ståhl in Oslo and London, Dacres in Stockholm and Gudzius in Brussels. The new generation took 87% of the podium positions at DL races and of course first 4 positions at the World Championships in London 2017.

Global Throwing Management had a great season, when Daniel Ståhl and Fedrick Dacres had double wins at Oslo, Stockholm and London Diamond League meets and with 2nd and 4th position at the Worlds.

But let´s look at discus throw on a bigger scale - in season 2017, discus throw as an event had 17 throws over 68m (all of these throws by the new generation athletes). That is more than twice as in season 2016 and 8,5 times more than in 2015. It was back in 2012, when we had 17 throws over 68m and then the peak of discus throw event in years 2004-2010, when this figure was between 20-35 throws over 68m. So when we look at those numbers, then the season 2017 seems promising for discus throw future.

68m and 60m throws from season 2003-2017

Another statistical figure I like to follow on discus throwers, is their season top10 best meets average, which shows consistency during the season. All-time best at this comparison are of course Gerd Kanter and Virgilijus Alekna - Kanter had an exceptional season in 2007, when his season top10 meets average was 69.980m and Alekna in 2000 with 69.891m. Third on this all-time list is Swede Ricky Bruch with 69.580m. Robert Harting´s best season was 2013 with a top10 average of 68.649m and Malachowski in 2010 with 68.245m.

During season 2017, new generation discus throwers had a quite consistent season and high-level top10 season averages. For example Daniel Ståhl season 2017 10 best meets average was 68.424m and that gives him all-time 12th position in this statistical list. World Champion Andrius Gudzius had an average of 67.818m and that gives 16th position at the all-time list and Fedrick Dacres average was 67.453m and 21st position. 

As I said before, discus throw future looks promising and we should see some huge throws during season 2018. Good luck to all the discus throwers and just have fun!

Written by Hans Üürike, Athletes’ Representative for Global Throwing Management


"How to Become an Olympic Champion" is a video series by coach Vésteinn Hafsteinsson on example of Discus Throw legend Gerd Kanter. The first video series puts focus on Olympic Lifting for Throwers. Click here for more info.


Our athletes in 2019

1 Marcus Thomsen 20.58m