A golden time at nationals
It won’t exactly be springtime in Paris when Katelynn Williams and Christine Girard head to the city of lights in November, but they may not have much time for sightseeing, anyhow.
That’s because the pair of Semi Weightlifting Club members will be focused on a more important task — winning a medal at the world weightlifting championships.
The duo qualified for the world championships at the national championships held in Scarborough, Ont.
Williams — whom Semi coach Dieter Stamm called “a real darkhorse” heading into the competition — captured gold in the women’s 75-kg class, lifting a combined 209 kg in clean-and-jerk and snatch.
Her total score was seven kilograms better than Yukon’s Jeanne Lassen, a Canadian Olympian who competed at the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing. In third place was another lifter with plenty of international experience, Ontario’s Kara Doherty, who now live and trains in the United States.
“Katelynn came in as one of the younger, lesser (experienced) lifters — she was up against some very good competition,” Stamm said. “But she was incredible — she did just a super, bang-up job. Amazing.”
The 24-year-old, who graduated from Brookswood in 2005, has been lifting since 2002.
Joining Williams on the podium was Girard, a former Olympian herself. Competing in the women’s 63-kg division, she outlifted the competition by a considerable margin — her total score of 222 kg was 52 kg better than second-place lifter Kristel Ngarlem.
“Pretty impressive to win by that much,” Stamm said. “She won quite handily.”
Williams and Girard will now spend the summer preparing for world championships, slated for Paris in November. And Stamm is confident both have a chance to make the podium there, too.
Girard is already one of the world’s elite female lifters – she finished fourth at the Beijing Olympics and won a gold medal at last year’s Commonwealth Games — but Stamm said Williams, too, is making big strides.
“She has an excellent chance at worlds. She did well last weekend — very well — but I don’t think that was her at her best yet,” the longtime weightlifting coach said.
“I think she can get even better. She still has more to give.”