Ethan Katzberg | The Canadian Encyclopedia


Ethan Katzberg

Ethan Tobias Katzberg, track and field athlete (born 5 April 2002 in Nanaimo, BC). Ethan Katzberg holds the Pan American Games record (80.96 m) and the Canadian record (84.38 m) in men’s hammer throw. At the 2023 World Athletics Championships, he became the first Canadian to win gold in the hammer throw (81.25 m), as well as the youngest medallist ever in the event. Katzberg is seen as a gold medal favourite heading into the 2024 Olympic Summer Games in Paris.

Early Life

Ethan Katzberg is the youngest of two children of Bernie and Coralee Katzberg. Bernie was a facility manager,  while Coralee is a financial advisor. Bernie was very active with the Nanaimo Track and Field Club and coached both Ethan and his older sister, Jessica. Ethan was initially involved in basketball but showed an interest in the hammer throw when he saw his father coaching his sister.

High School Athletics

At age 15, Ethan Katzberg won the gold medal in hammer throw at the BC Athletics Track & Field Championships Jamboree with a throw of 56.38 m. This qualified him for the 2017 National Youth Track and Field Championships in Brandon, Manitoba. He won gold there with a throw of 61.54 m. In 2018 and 2019, Ethan won back-to-back BC High School Sports Provincial Championships representing John Barsby Secondary School in Nanaimo.

International Competition

After graduating from high school in 2019, Ethan moved to Kamloops, where he was coached by Dylan Armstrong, an Olympic bronze medallist in shot put. In 2023, Armstrong told the Toronto Star that the six-foot-six Katzberg was “a skinny basketball player when I got him. What really stuck out, obviously, was his height and his speed. That’s a rare combination. It’s hard to find a fast, tall, coordinated guy that may have some interest in throwing.”

At the 2021 World Athletics U20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya, Katzberg qualified for the final. Then, at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England, he had a personal best throw of 76.36 m to win the silver medal.

Katzberg won his first Canadian Track and Field Championships title in Langley, BC, in 2023 with a throw of 78.73 m. He qualified for the World Athletics Championships by reaching the qualifying standard of 78 m.

Katzberg’s gold medal throw of 81.25 m at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest was noteworthy. Not only did he set a Canadian record, but he beat Poland’s Wojciech Nowicki in the process. Nowicki, the reigning Olympic champion and a five-time world champion, was the heavy favourite. But he had to settle for silver with a throw of 81.02 m.

Katzberg was the first Canadian ever to win a WAC gold medal in the hammer throw. He was also the youngest medallist in the event, at the age of 21 years, four months and 15 days.

At the 2023 Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile, Katzberg won gold in the men’s hammer throw with a throw of 80.96 m — a Pan Am Games record.  

On 20 April 2024, Katzberg broke his own Canadian record with a gold medal throw of 84.38 m at the Kip Keino Classic in Nairobi, Kenya. It was the longest hammer throw by any athlete since 2008, and the ninth best hammer throw of all time.