Stephen Mozia has eyes set on making his first Olympic Games this summer. Provided that he continues to stay healthy, it looks like we will be expecting him to compete in Rio de Janerio, Brazil.
This past weekend, Mozia set a new lifetime best in the shot put at the Vanderbilt Invitational in Nashville, TN, resetting the Nigerian national record to 21.11m (69-03 1/4). The mark is the best in the world to date. He actually was previously the world leader and broke the Nigerian national record in the shot put with his 21.03m/69-00 winning mark from the Commodore Invitational back on January 15th.
The 2016 Olympic Games Standard for the shot put is 20.50m (67-03 1/4), which he needed to surpass sometime during the time period of May 1, 2015 and July 11, 2016.
Mozia will still have time to improve his qualification marks for both the Olympic Games and this winter’s IAAF Indoor World Championships, as Mozia will need to be one of the top 16 in the world shot put rankings in order to qualify (in addition to surpassing the qualification mark of 20.50m). The Indoor World Championships will be held on March 17th to 20th in Portland, OR. Mozia has previously represented Team Nigeria at the 2014 IAAF Indoor World Championships while he was a junior at Cornell.
UPDATE (2/4/16) – Mozia gave this interview with Norm Zylstra of Throwholics.com about his recent throwing improvements and current training situation in Tennessee, where he is working at Emerson Electric as a sales support engineer.
Another Cornell alum who is seeking a spot at the Indoor World Championships is Bruno Hortelano-Roig, who is seeking a spot in either the 60m or 200m on Team Spain. Back at the Nittany Lion Invitational on January 16th, he won the 60m in a new personal best of 6.66, which is 0.01 seconds off the IAAF qualification mark. The time is currently tied for 29th fasted in the world. He’s also currently ranked 26th in the world in the 200m with his 21.18 time from the same meet, but the 200m will not be contested at the Indoor World Championships. Hortelano-Roig will have until March 7th to hit the IAAF qualification standard.
We’re sure that there are additional alumni who are chasing the IAAF standards – let us know if through the Contact link or social media if any additional athletes have met any of the qualification standards.