British Weightlifting North Series Success
(28 October 2019)
Last week, 3 Durham students competed in the British Weightlifting North Series. This was a big moment for the University lifting club, set up last year.
Previously some individuals have enjoyed success, namely Niamh Moody winning bronze at the British University Championships in 2018, placing her as first in the U20s. The club, however, has not been able to put a team together for any one competition. Now it looks like Durham's strongest club is on the rise!
Competition day began smoothly with an early morning trip to Middlesbrough followed by the weigh-in. All 3 athletes made their goal weights.
Ernest Kwok and Ben Sharpley were the first to lift in the men's 73kg and 81kg classes, respectively. Ben lifted a personal record of 79 kilograms in the Snatch, the first of the 2 competition lifts where the lifter must elevate the bar from the floor to overhead in one smooth movement. Ernest also achieved competition records all round. He lifted a whopping 117kgs in the Clean and Jerk, the second competition lift where the athlete has two movements to elevate the bar overhead. He did that weighing just 72kgs.
Ecem Hasan was the next to compete in the Women's 76kg Category. Despite it being her first official Weightlifting competition, she stayed cool and composed, achieving an amazing 54kg personal best in the Clean and Jerk.
The club is hoping that this will be a breakthrough year after receiving so much interest from beginners and experienced lifters alike. The season revolves around the University championships in April that a good number of athletes are looking to qualify for. After a promising start to the year, there may even be some medals in the offing.
The club has also seen exciting growth at the non-competitive level as well with a lot of beginners learning the ropes since the beginning of Michaelmas term. The sport's focus on quality of movement and coordination provides unique benefits not gained from standard Strength and Conditioning. This gives it a great carry over to other sports and general life, so it is great to see so many people enjoying this great sport.