A Nanaimo athlete, now training with an Olympian, has broken the Canadian record in the hammer throw and risen to third-best in the world for his age.
Ethan Katzberg, a John Barsby Secondary School grad, set a new Canadian U20 record on Sunday, May 23, in Kamloops, throwing a six-kilogram hammer 77.97 metres. Katzberg had become the Canadian U20 record-holder earlier in the month with a 75.60m throw.
His record-setting throw this week was his third attempt of the competition.
“I had a hunch it was good,” Katzberg said in a press release. “But I didn’t expect it would be that far.”
Katzberg, formerly of the Nanaimo Track and Field Club, now attends Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops and trains with Dylan Armstrong, an Olympic bronze medallist in shot put. Katzberg now trains seven or eight times a week, and “the commitment now is stronger than ever.”
Athletes competing in U20 throw a 6kg hammer whereas Olympic competition happens with a 7.26kg hammer. For now, Katzberg is targeting the U20 world track and field championships scheduled for this August in Kenya.
“We’re building up our training to be in peak form for the world championships, but I don’t know whether the event is even going to take place, no one really knows,” Katzberg said.
Katzberg won provincial and national championships in hammer throw in his teens and was the top scorer on the Barsby Bulldogs senior boys’ basketball team that made provincials last year.