Linda Cohn calls shot, sets W65 javelin WR after advance work

Linda Cohn relaxes after busy weeks preparing for WR attempt.

Setting a masters world record takes a lot of work — training, supreme talent and a little luck. But Linda Cohn went a step further — making an all-comers meet into a record-eligible meet for the javelin. Starting in mid-November, she was making sure the Dec. 9 Red-Black open meet at San Diego State University had weights and measures and certified USATF officials to run her event. Rick Reaser, the meet director, worked with her, arranging for San Diego officials Jim Skelly and Jay Beltz to provide a scale for her 500-gram stick. So with friends and teammates Rita Hanscom and Linn Dunton helping with logistics, Linda drove three hours south from Northridge and proceeded to stick a W65 world record just days after turning 65. She even brought a steel tape. Official results haven’t been posted, but she threw 33.99 meters (111-6) (and later a 32.94) to smash the listed WR of 32.02 (105-1) by Holland’s Weia Reinboud in 2016. (In 2014, the W60-74 throwers began using the 500g spear instead of 400g.) Linda is the listed W60 WR holder as well, with her 37.50 (123-0) from 2014.

Linda’s series shows that she broke the WR twice on successive throws.

“I was very happy to throw the world record today,” Linda wrote in response to my query, “but I honestly couldn’t have done it without the help of my friends. I maybe earned one-third of the record, and Rita Hanscom and Linn Dunton  deserve the other two-thirds.  It’s always exciting to try for a world record, but I was really nervous about this attempt, and without their support I’m not sure I could have done it.”

Officials inspect inspect tapes for WR sign-off. Photo by Rita Hanscom

Linda, who often competes in sprints and jumps, says she trained more this year with the javelin that she had in previous years.  

”The result… was that I have had a pretty sore arm for most of the season,” she wrote. “Because of that I decided to stop throwing for a while  and honestly haven’t practiced for the past five weeks.

“Probably not the best way to prepare for a world record, but it felt like the right thing to do. The good thing was that my arm wasn’t sore today, but my technique was a bit off.”

She vows to train smarter in 2018 and hopes to throw a few meters farther.

Rick the meet maven checked in with offfical series, and said: “Conditions were beautiful for the meet. It was sunny and probably 75 degrees when she threw. There was practically no wind according to the 150m anemometer readings that was around the time of the throws.”

Nice work, Linda. And that’s how you master the record game.

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December 9, 2017

16 Responses

  1. Peter L. Taylor - December 10, 2017

    Happy birthday, Linda, and that’s a great photo of you. I’m so happy that you have come from nowhere a few years ago to setting a world mark in W60 and now the world record in W65. I will now copy the first part of a comment I made on this site in 2012:

    “Yes, Linda Cohn is very popular with her fellow athletes, and why not? She has a kind heart and interacts beautifully with others. She is also a wonderful T&F athlete…”

  2. Kay Glynn - December 10, 2017

    That’s absolutely great, Linda! What a nice way to turn 65!

  3. Mary Harada - December 10, 2017

    so Linda – how many smoots is that?

    congratulations – a wonderful achievement by a wonderful person.

  4. Ken Stone - December 10, 2017

    I wrote to Weia for a comment, and she replied:

    Very nice Linda! I expected you to demolish my record, but thought it would become march or so. Overhere it is fully winter and there are no meets at all.

    Congratulations with this record. And with your birthday, of course.

    Maybe nice to know: there is a simple formula to estimate how different weights work out. The old record of Evaun Williams with the 400 will be virtually surpassed with 34.06. Next meet?!

  5. christel donley - December 10, 2017

    Here is a BIG HUG from another friend….
    I remember, when you first started to throw, what a talent and more than that – a just wonderful friend and athlete ( in any order)

    Once we have a date and venue!! for our Pasadena Senior Games, I will make sure you can throw even further! – YOU DO the throwing, and I will have logistics prepared. A deal??

    Oh, and I do plan on your help at Arcadia!!

  6. Jeanne Bowman - December 10, 2017

    Happy 65th Linda!!

    You know how to celebrate perfectly! How nice to have Rita and Linn as your back up! Bring on 2018!

    You’re so great!

  7. Myrle Mensey - December 11, 2017

    Congratulation Linda! What a way to enter a new age group. Welcome aboard. We only have 1 year together but its always enjoyable. See you in March at Nationals.

  8. Myrle Mensey - December 11, 2017

    Congratulations Linda! What a way to enter a new age group. Welcome aboard. We only have 1 year together but its always enjoyable. See you in March at Nationals.

  9. Buzz Gagne - December 11, 2017

    Happy Birthday, Linda !
    This is a great birthday present that was earned and not given.
    Looking forward to you setting more WR’s in 2018 !
    U Da Ma’am !!!!!!
    Throw far !

  10. Bob Hewitt - December 11, 2017

    Way to go, “Javalinda”!

  11. Cherie Gwinn - December 11, 2017

    Congratulations Linda! What a great way to end your 2017 season. We would love to see you in Spokane competing and setting records!

  12. Rob Jerome - December 11, 2017

    Congratulations, Linda, and happy birthday! Kinda thought when I photographed you at the Huntsman Games this WR would be yours, but didn’t know it would come so soon. Terrific achievement!

  13. Steve Wennerstrom - December 12, 2017

    Congrats Linda! And a measure of thanks can go to Rick Reaser. I’ve known Rick for a long time (his daughter is an elite heptathlete) and he is a stickler for details. Good man to oversee the proceedings!

  14. Martha Green - December 13, 2017

    Congrats Linda! I cannot think of a better way to celebrate getting older.

  15. Shaaron Sellars - December 13, 2017

    Congratulations Linda! I’m so proud of you and not surprised. What I am surprised at, however, is that you are 65!!! It’s true what they say: you’re not getting older, you’re getting better!

  16. Janis Coleman - July 31, 2019

    Linda. Do you ever have clinics? I appreciate the tips you have given me. They have helped, but I am still a rank beginner on throws.

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