Sports

White Rock weightlifter earns spot on 2012 Olympic team

White Rock
White Rock's Christine Girard has qualified for the 2012 Summer Olympics.
— image credit: File photo

Fifteen weightlifters – including a handful from the Semiahmoo Peninsula – represented B.C. at Western Canadian Weightlifting Championships last month in Edmonton, with many winning medals and one, Christine Girard, earning a spot on the Canadian Olympic team.

In the women’s competition, Christine Girard – a Canadian Olympian who represented her country at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, finishing fourth – won gold in the 63 kg weight class with a 236-kg total lift (102 kg snatch, 134 clean-and-jerk).

Girard was also named the best female athlete at the event, and her performance – which would have been good enough for a podium spot at the 2008 Games – qualified her for the 2012 Olympics in London this summer.

The 27-year-old Girard, originally from Quebec, is considered one of Canada’s best hopes for a medal in London, and has been recently involved with Canada’s Own the Podium program.

In addition to her fourth-place finish in Beijing, Girard has won three Commonwealth Games medals – one gold – and twice finished on the podium at Pan American Games.

Katelynn Williams, a Langley resident and Semi Weightlifting Club member, took home the bronze medal in the 75-kg division at Westerns, with a 200-kg combined score (90 kg snatch, 110 clean-and-jerk).

In the men’s draw, Semi Weightlifting Club member Geoff Yee was named the event’s top male lifter, after winning gold in the 105-kg class.

Yee lifted a combined 311 kg (136 kg snatch, 175 clean-and-jerk) at the event.

Derek Herridge, a Semiahmoo Secondary grad and member of the Semi Weightlifting Club, won the bronze medal in the 94-kg division, lifting a combined 270 kg (125 kg snatch, 145 clean-and-jerk).

Team BC won the overall team title for the third straight year, edging other competing provinces and territories – Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and the Yukon.

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