Michelle Carter, who calls herself the “Shot Diva,” unleashed a Herculean final throw in the women’s shot put competition Friday night in Rio to take home the first-ever gold medal by an American woman in the event.
Carter, 30, heaved her last shot 20.63 meters to surpass and upset two-time defending gold medalist Valeri Adams of New Zealand. Adams had set the distance to beat, 20.42, and Carter’s first five throws had ranged from 19.12 to 19.87. But she came up big on her last attempt.
Carter had never medaled at the Olympics, but took bronze at the 2015 World Championships, and won gold at the 2016 World Indoor Championships.
Carter is the daughter of former NFL defensive lineman Michael Carter. Michael won a silver medal in the shot put in 1984 in Los Angeles, and won the Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49ers in the same year. He is the only person to win an Olympic medal and a Super Bowl in the same year.
Michelle’s gold also makes her and her father the first American father-daughter duo to medal at the Olympics.