Bartlett High senior shot putter Jordan Clarke extended his national record in the shot put today, flinging the 12-pound shot 70 feet, 6 inches to handily win the event as the Cook Inlet Conference regional track and field meet opened at Bartlett.
Clarke entered the competition with the best throw in the nation by a high school athlete, a 67-foot, 10 3/4-inch toss he uncorked just a week ago.
One throw into Friday's competition, that mark was erased as Clarke unleashed a 68-foot, 7.5-inch toss.
And on the fourth throw of the meet, Clarke broke the 70-foot barrier with his record toss.
"He doesn't choke," said John Schmitz, Bartlett's head track and field coach. "He's a natural."
Clarke, who is headed to Arizona State University on a track scholarship next season, has improved his shot put every year at Bartlett, starting with a 47-foot, 9.5-inch throw as a freshman that was fourth best in the state. He added 12 feet as a sophomore, nearly two feet as a junior and now nearly nine feet as a senior.
Clarke will make his final throws for Bartlett in Saturday's discus event, where he is also the state record holder.
Ian Rosario of Chugiak finished second Friday with a 49-foot, 3/4-inch throw in the shot.