TEENAGED weightlifting sensation Rebekah Tiler was crowned European Youth Champion after a record-breaking performance in Lithuania on Saturday.
The 14-year-old from Denholme in Yorkshire set new European Under-15 records in both the snatch and clean and jerk as she secured three gold medals in the over 63kg category at the championships in Klaipeda.
Returning home with five medals, the GB team’s performance bodes well for the future of the sport with a raft of talented young athletes taking up the sport and showing real progress.
Bingley Grammar School Tiler pupil holds 27 British records ranging from Under-23 to Under-14, and is also the English senior record holder.
Tiler lifted an impressive 82kg in the snatch to take the lead in the competition at the half way stage, then she underlined her form with a record-breaking lift of 108kg in the clean and jerk to secure victory with a combined total of 190kg.
"I was so nervous in the build-up to the competition,” said Tiler, who is coached at Mytholmroyd WLC by Eddie Halstead. “But as soon as I got on the platform I knew I had done this plenty of times before and was pretty confident once I secured my first lifts.
“It was so much fun - I can't wait to go to the European Juniors in a couple of weeks and really test myself again. It was a fantastic team effort from both us, the athletes, and the personal coaches and BWL staff.”
As well as Tiler’s three gold medals, GB team-mate Mercy Brown won two bronze medals in the Under-17 69kg+ category, for the clean and jerk and total. She lifted 83kg in the snatch and 104kg in the clean and jerk.
And earlier in the week, Poi Fakcha set two new personal bests in the Under-17 58kg category, lifting 60kg in the snatch and 75kg in the clean and jerk to finish tenth overall.
“It has been a great week for the sport,” said British Weight Lifting Chief Executive Ashley Metcalfe. “Rebekah is a real talent, but as we have seen we have other young athletes who are doing really well and coming home with medals.
“It’s great to see that we are producing the goods, and already showing our funding partners that their investment in weightlifting is money well spent.”