Weightlifting for the BBC at the Olympics


British weightlifting Olympic story from Britshweightling.org... Well done Team GB weightlifters


Smith sets new British weightlifting record at London 2012 Olympics

Zoe Smith set a new British senior clean and jerk record as she finished second in Group B of the women’s 58kg weightlifting competition at the ExCeL.

Smith, 18, lifted 121kg to surpass the previous record of 120kg set by Beijing Olympian Michaela Breeze at the 2004 European Championships in Kiev.

Her clean and jerk effort made up for a disappointing snatch, where she could only manage to lift 90kg, but the teenager said her experience will be a valuable one ahead of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

“This afternoon was an amazing experience. The crowd were great and over the next few days I am going to reflect on what has happened,” she said.

“I was very pleased that after a disappointing start I was able to come back and perform so well in the clean and jerk. It is all going to stand me in very good stead for Rio in 2016.”

Throughout the competition Smith was cheered on by a loud and supportive home crowd which numbered around 6,000 people.

“I want to thank every single member of the crowd, who really helped me come back and do so well in the clean and jerk,” she said. “It is an experience I am never going to forget.”


Weightlifter Smith 'needs to kick on'


Evans falls short of British Records

Weightlifter Gareth Evans set three new personal bests when he took to the Olympic stage in the men's 69kg although the British records narrowly evaded him.

It may only have been enough to claim eighth place in the B group, with a further 14 A group lifters to go, but the Welshman did himself proud, saving the best lifts of his career for London 2012.

The 26-year-old was clearly pumped up for the event, thoroughly enjoying himself on stage and cranking the atmosphere higher at the ExCeL, where British flags were waving aplenty.

He comfortably took on 125kg in his first snatch attempt before going on to lift 130kg - overtaking his previous PB of 126kg - but struggled to get enough on his final attempt of 133kg, which would have beaten Stewart Cruikshank's British record of 132.5kg set 10 years ago.

Evans, in his first Games, then made light work of 153kg and 158kg in the clean and jerk, surpassing his PB by three kilos, but again came up just short in his final lift of 160kg.

It meant his 288kg total smashed his previous best of 277kg, with Cruikshank's British record standing at 297.5kg.


Evans dedicates PB to mum and dad


Jack the Lad stirs to produce a classic performance

He does not fit the weightlifting stereotype. Jack Oliver is a Classics student at the University of Leeds and the baby of the Team GB men's weightlifting team. Like many students, he likes a lie-in.

So it was this morning ... even though he had a major date in the Weightlifting Hall. In fact, he didn't wake up until his coach sharply knocked on his door.

But the youngster from Sidcup, Kent, produced a wide-awake performance in the B Group of the 77kg competition. Twice he set new personal bests in the clean and jerk section after carding 140kg in the earlier snatch.

First he eclipsed his previous best clean and jerk of 162kg by lifting 165 and then, to the delight of a raucous home support, he reappeared to lift 170kg to finish in fourth place.

A delighted Oliver (pictured), just 21, said: "I woke up an hour late this morning to the sound of my coach banging on my bedroom door. The sleep did me good and I had  less time to think about the competition.

"I just got on with it. I'm really pleased with the PBs especially as in the warm-up area I struggled to lift 153kg in the clean and jerk."

Perhaps he was still waking up. If he needed rousing, the crowd did it for him and he admitted: "I'm convinced the crowd helped me take off 10kg from the weight on the bar with their support rather than putting it on. They were great..

"My objective was to make PBs at the Olympics and I have done it."

His late mornings in bed may be coming to an end, however, as he said: "I will find out later today about an exam I have to do this month - so I have to start revising."


Oliver shines after rude awakening


Perdue follows in father's footsteps to realise olympic dream

Swansea’s Natasha Perdue fulfilled her dream of following in her father’s footsteps when she competed in the women’s 69kg class of the Olympic weightlifting tournament at the ExCeL Centre in London Docklands – but she had to contend with an injured back and a leg spasm before finishing fourth in the B Group.

From her first lift it became apparent all was not well with the 37-year-old, whose father Terry Perdue finished tenth in both the 1968 and 1972 Olympics in Mexico and Munich.

After missing out on 92kg, she staggered sideways as she walked off the platform and was helped back to the warm-up room by her coaches and physio.

She returned to the platform for her second attempt and managed to lift 92kg, while she just missed out on a PB-equalling 95kg for her third snatch.

Perdue just managed to hoist her first clean and jerk of 113kg. But it was to prove her final lift as, having recorded a total of 205kg, her coaches decided not to risk injury.

“The crowd were fantastic,” said Perdue afterwards. “It feels great to be an Olympian and I’m so pleased to have got a total. It means so much to get to follow in my fathers’ footsteps.

“I’m hugely disappointed to get the spasm in my leg, but after failing with my first lift I was determined to come back on stage and get a successful lift.

“It meant the world to me to do that and obviously I couldn’t help but think about my father and what he achieved in two Olympics.

“There was some debate about whether I should come out for the clean and jerk, but I’m so glad I did and although there’s a mix of disappointment and happiness I feel that I went out on a high.”

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