Christian Cantwell, born on 3 September 1980, currently holds the Hanžeković Memorial shot put record with a distance of 22.22 metres. This result was is 2010, and the year before in 2009 he threw at the Mladost Sports Park achieving 22.16 metres which become the best result in the world that year.
Cantwell is certainly familiar with various records as in each season from 2003 to 2012 he has positioned himself among the top five in the world rankings. He has finished the year five times as number one, both on the outdoor and indoor circuits, and in 2006 the three best shots of the season were his.
A peek at his impressive collection of medals would reveal the World Championship Gold in Berlin 2009, Olympic Silver medal in Beijing 2008, and no less than three indoor world titles from Budapest in 2004, Valencia in 2008 and Doha in 2010.
According to Cartwell, Zagreb and Croatia should not consider him as a guest nor a stranger:
“This is where I come to see my friend Nedzad (Mulabegović) and in a sense, this feels like a second home. Training is quite a family atmosphere as we positively encourage one another and yet also have fun doing it. I always come to Zagreb a few days before the meeting, take time out to relax and have fun and enjoy eating 10 kilos of lamb! The atmosphere in the stadium is always great which means a lot to me. But most importantly is the fact of always wanting to win and competition here is always very strong. Everybody here already knows me well, from the minute I arrive at the airport throughout my time here and I really feel good. I’ll come back again a few days before the Hanžek meeting and we’ll pop over to the coast for a few days. “
Yes, he mentioned that this year at the Hanžek meeting he will aim to create a personal best. How far is that? Well, 22.54 metres! Fortunately, there is just enough space next to the fountain.