INDIANAPOLIS -- Suzy Powell (Modesto, California) set an American record in the women’s discus throw on April 14, 2007 and was voted by fans as winner of the fourth USATF Throwback Athlete of the Week award. In the absence of competition during the Covid-19 pandemic, we are taking a weekly look back at some of the great efforts by American track and field athletes through the years.

A three-time Olympian and veteran of three Team USATF squads at the IAAF World Championships, Powell used the favorable breezes at the Maui Big Wind Invitational in Wailuku, Hawaii, to throw 67.67m/222-0 in the fifth round and add more than five feet to the existing American record of 66.10m/216-10, set in 1986 by Carol Cady. The throw still ranks her No. 3 on the all-time U.S. list.
Other historical performances of note from the April 6-12 period in USATF history:

  • April 13 — Cornelius “Dutch” Warmerdam American record in pole vault, 4.57m/15-0 at Berkeley, California, in 1940
  • April 15 — Margaret Jenkins American record in javelin throw, 39.35m/129-1 at San Jose, California, in 1928
  • April 16 — Leslie Deniz American record in discus throw, 64.94/213-1 at Tempe, Arizona, in 1983
  • April 17 — Charles Fonville World Record in shot put, 17.68m/58-0.375 at Kansas Relays in 1948
  • April 18 — Ray Norton equaled the World Record in 100m, 10.1ht at San Jose, California, in 1959
  • April 19 — Jean Shiley indoor American record in women’s high jump, 5-3.5 at Boston, Massachusetts, in 1930

Now in its 19th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.
2020 Winners: January 9, Miranda Melville; January 16, Paul Perry; January 23, Natosha Rogers; January 30, Tyler Day, February 6, Devin Dixon; February 13, Elle Purrier; February 20, Tori Franklin; February 27, Sandi Morris; March 4, Abdi Abdirahman; March 12 Marielle Hall; March 19, Tim Tollefson; April 2, Louise Ritter; April 9, Francie Larrieu Smith; April 16, Erin Gilreath; April 23, Suzy Powell.
We welcome your nominations!
To nominate an athlete for USATF Athlete of the Week, please send a detailed email about his/her performance to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
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