NEW YORK – USA Track & Field on Tuesday announced that Christian Cantwell, the world’s #1-ranked shot putter, will again headline the men’s shot put at the 104th Millrose Games January 28 at Madison Square Garden.
Cantwell spoke to the New York media this week via video conference, where he discussed impending shoulder surgery, the largesse of his toddler son, Jackson, and the naming conventions he uses for his dogs, of which he owns three. He even spoke a bit about the shot put.
The three-time defending World Indoor Champion and 2009 World Outdoor gold medalist in the
shot put, Cantwell enjoyed an utterly dominant year in 2010, in which he was ranked #1 in the world and won the 2010 Indoor Visa Championship as the top male performer of the Visa Championship Series. He threw farther than 70 feet in 20 different meets and won the Diamond League title in the shot.
As is customary at Millrose, Cantwell will face the very best the U.S. and the world has to offer in a field of four men. Two-time Olympic silver medalist and 2005 World Outdoor Champion Adam Nelson, 2007 World Outdoor and 2006 World Indoor champion Reese Hoffa, and six-time NCAA champion Ryan Whiting of Arizona State will provide the competition.
Below are excerpts from the video conference related to the shot put. For more on the 104th
Millrose Games, visit www.millrose-games.com
On his 2011 so far, and his shoulder injury: “Everything is going OK. I’ve got a little shoulder problem – my left shoulder has a labrum tear. But I’ve been throwing well … At this point in the year, I’m throwing farther than I ever have. Last year before my first meet, I don’t think I broke 70 feet (in practice). I’ve been throwing that already. I’m going to have surgery in early February. I’ll spend two months in a sling, and in a couple of months I’ll be OK. Really, it only affects my quality of life. It only hurts when I sleep. But it’s something I need to take care of. I don’t think it will affect me after June.”
On returning to Millrose: “They put the men’s shot in this year, which is something you can’t take for granted. I love the Millrose Games. Last year, I felt I wasn’t in very good shape, and I threw 21.95 m (21.95 meters / 72 feet, one-quarter inch). Nelson and Hoffa are my main competitors (in the U.S.) … Ryan Whiting is one of those guys who is going to be a real asset to the sport. There are a lot of good guys. I’m in the old guard, but I think there’s still some tread left on the tires.”
On the consistency he showed in his 2010 season: “I was told for years that this is a sport for older people, especially the shot put. I’m starting to believe that. There were times out there it felt easy. I’m not as strong as I was when I was 23, and sometimes I’m not as driven – there are times when I’m spending time with my family and son (instead of training and competing). Maybe that’s why I’m more consistent.”
On throwing 70 feet: “That was always the magical number for me, growing up. I judge how I’m throwing with that number. I’ve wanted 100 throws over 70 feet, and I’ve got about 30 to go.”
On his remarks after winning his first world title, at the 2008 World Indoor Championships: “Some people had said I was a choker. I just was telling them to shove it.”