The US Sub-Junior Team had one last lifter this morning, Preston Turner of Texas. Preston is a pretty wild looking Texan with long black hair that is normally in his face and of course the girls over here all love it. Don't tell him though, we don't want it to go to his head!! :)
Preston was lifting in the 110 kilo or 242lb class and he must win for the Men's Sub-Junior Team to take home the Team Gold. "There would be no more opportunities for the American team. We either had to put the competition away by winning this weight class or settle on the silver.
Squat warm ups were going very well until we put Preston into his squat suit. The suit was so tight that he could not reach the proper depth at the weight we had opened with. Instead of taking a chance of failure by increasing the opening weight on the bar, we chose to put Preston into a suit that fit a little looser...Preston hit his first two squats just like he was meant to and then we changed him into his tight suit and called for a new World Record...335.5 kilos (739.6lbs). Preston buried the weight and finished the lift to 3 white lights. At the end of the squat session Preston had a .5kilo lead on his nearest comptetitor, Konstantin Ugarov, the Russian. You already knew there would be a Russian involved in this, didn't you?
So we do the only thing that made sense, we open with a new World Record bench to go with the squat. Preston missed his opener by bobbling the weight on the way up, but a little adjustment to his bench shirt and the next attempt went up easily. During the bench session the Russian would not complete a lift and would be eliminated from the competition.
This did not mean Preston could let up on his lifting, as he had a Slovakian, Robert Valach, that could still put Team USA in the silver medal position if he won....Although the Slovakian had a better pull than Preston, he was not able to make up the lead that Preston had created in the bench press.
Preston would go on to finish in 1st place and finalize the USA team's gold medal position. Team USA had managed to hold off the Russians this year and put a gold cup on the shelf!!! This would be the first gold position for the American Boy's team in the last few years...and with the looks of the boys coming back possibly next year, it won't be our last.
USA Boys - 66 points
Russia - 60 points
Ukraine - 44 points
Japan - 39 points
Poland - 34 points
There were 23 Boys teams involved in this year's championships, we are very proud of our kids and how they performed on and off of the platform. USA should be proud of our young people that made this trip...all handled themselfves very well.