The following is a public service announcement from Captain Obvious:
Sandra Perkovic of Croatia is going to win the women’s disc.
Here’s how we know:
-She opened the season with a 70.59m toss on March 6 in Split.
-She threw a 70.88m world-leader on May 14 in Shanghai.
-She threw 69 meters twice in July, most recently 69.94m in London on the 23rd.
-All in all, she has six of the top ten throws of 2016.
-Beyond that, she is quite simply the best women’s discus thrower in history, and at the top of her game. I know, I know, her PR of 71.08m is the 85th best throw of all-time. But throws 1 thru 84 on that list took place between 1981-1992, and all but one of them was made by an athlete from the Eastern Bloc. That one throw (71.22m, number 78 on the list) was produced by Ria Stalman of the Netherlands who, earlier this year, shocked the world by admitting that she took supplements other than vitamin C during her career.
These throwers will be vying for the silver and bronze:
Yaime Perez of Cuba threw 68.86m in Havana in February. She followed that up with a 67.91m in June, also in Cuba. For the past two months, though, she has not been impressive.
Yaime’s teammate, Dania Caballero, won the World Championships last year by hammering a 69-meter first round toss that Perkovic could not answer. This year, her best of 67.62m came June 29 in Portugal after she was destroyed by Perkovic in Stockholm and Oslo.
Nadine Muller of Germany took the silver last year in Beijing with a 65.53m toss. This year she won the German championships with 65.79m–her season’s best. We are wondering, though, if something is up with her health, as she finished fourth at the Euros (62.63m) and then threw 59.95m at the London DL meeting.
Shanice Craft, also of Germany, has thrown 64.62m this year, and finished third at the Euros. She is super consistent, but at twenty-three-years-old may not be ready yet to bust a 66m and get in the hunt in Rio. Then again, I did not think her countryman Daniel Jasinski had a prayer of getting on the podium, and we know how that turned out.
Dani Samuels of Australia was the World Champion in 2009 but has not medaled at a major meet since. Why, I do not know. This year, she hit 67.77m in Shanghai in May, so she has the horsepower to get on the podium in Rio if she can find her form.
Germany’s Julia Fischer finished fifth in Beijing last year with a 63.88m toss, and earned this season’s European silver (65.77m). She also threw a huge PR of 68.49m in May.
Here are Trofimuk’s predictions. I disagree, which is why he is currently locked in the basement.
Here are my picks:
Bronze: Cabellero. She’s not producing the results she was last year, but is for sure capable of going 66+.
Silver: Fischer. Is she ready to pull a Chris Harting and take the leap to the big time? Why yes, she is. Unfortunately, and this is not a dig at Piotr Malachowski, no matter how far she or anyone else throws, Perkovic will throw father.
Gold: Perkovic. She was banged up last year, and could not respond in her usual honey badger style when Caballero killed one in the first round in Beijing. That will not be the case in Rio. If she has to, she will go 70+ to get the win.