As a follow up to yesterday's "tomorrow" posting....did I really just write that? Anyway, woke up early this morning, say about 2:45am to find Jesse wandering around the room, digging in some protein bars and drinking some water...he was having just a little trouble sleeping. No worries I told him, try to get some sleep. He told me later in the day he finally got to sleep around 4 am and was able to sleep until about 9:30.
While he was finally sleeping later in the morning, Kenzie had already started warming up, getting ready for her turn with the iron. She was very relaxed and for once she was not sick!! :) She got herself ready and hit all of her practice lifts before moving to the platform. We had worked out our goals for Kenzie earlier in the year as I had said in yesterday's posting...
Squat over 500lbs, Deadlift over 400lbs, Total over 1100lbs and get on the podium overall. If she could accomplish this in her first Juniors level meet we would be quite happy. Her trip would be successful. Well Kenzie didn't have the perfect meet, but she did manage a 5 for 9 performance with a 230 kilo (507lb) squat which tied for the Russian for best squat and she pulled a new personal record 185 kilo (407.8lb) deadlift, which, I never thought I would see the day, but she took Bronze in the deadlift. We were both dissapointed in her benchpress on this day, but she managed enough to push her overall total to 502.5 kilos (1107.8lbs) and this total got her to the podium in 3rd place overall.
I could not have planned a more perfect ending for her on this trip except maybe a 9 for 9 day on her lifts. She planned her goals, she worked very hard over the last 6 months, got herself in position to be here and then made it all happen. I am really proud of what she accomplished.
Jesse started this trip with a few goals that we had worked on, but Jesse has had so much success in this sport this year we kept having to modify our goals on the fly. Seemed like everytime we would set a goal he would achieve it and it was time to set it higher.
One of Jesse's major goals on this trip was to take home the overall Gold medal. Since his performance in Brazil last September, placing 2nd in the world just didn't seem to set well with Jesse. Now for most of us placing 2nd at the state level in anything would probably and should be a great achievement, but Jesse, in this sport proved to himself last year that he could lift with the best 18year olds in the world...and last year he had just turned 16.
Of course he wanted to set new personal records in all 3 lifts and we expected him to reset his current World Record in the squat, but he also hoped to be able to pull a big deadlift over here and put his name beside that World Record as well. I have to say Jesse's entire demeanor was totally different than last year. He spent much more time in his hotel room, staying fresh, reading, he even brought a variety of American foods to have so he didn't have to just eat Czech food. He participated with the other team members and watched his share of events, but he was in bed everyday trying to get his rest...and he wasn't very happy when his flight of lifting got moved to Friday due to the number of lifters that had entered. Jesse was focused on what he had come here for...a Gold Medal.
Jesse looked very relaxed in the warmup area and a number of foreign lifters and their coaches had come to watch him warm up and compete. Everyone knew who he was and except for those in his weight class, everyone was anticipating his performance, especially his squats.
Now Jesse had a great day of lifting today and the scorebook shows he went 7 for 9 on his lifts. His opening squat of 310 kilos (683 lbs) ended up being the best squat of the session, even including the 90 kilo lifters that followed his class. Only 1 lifter in the 100 kilo class ( the winner) squatted more that Jesse and he only bested Jesse's opening attempt by 5 kilos. But on Jesse's second attempt I chose to take him to a new World Record squat 325 kilos (716.5lbs). This would have increased his current world record by over 10lbs. Two of the 3 judges red lighted him for not going deep enough, I didn't necessarily agree with the call, but I can live with that one. So we took the same weight again on his 3rd attempt. This time they called him for carrying the bar too low on his back during the lift. We glanced to the head table for support, but it was clear that they were not going to overturn the judges decision. Of course they hadn't overturned any decision for an American lifter at this world championship, so nothing new. This call to me was very bush league, as we would say in the good ole U S of A. A great way of saying, "Take that you American Brat" or if this was a Seinfeld episode, "NO SQUAT FOR YOU!" Jesse carries the bar exactly the same evertime he squats, if the bar had been too low, why wasn't it called on the 1st or 2nd attempts...like I said, totally Bush League!
The speed at which Jesse squats 716lbs is incredible, even on his 3rd attempt Jesse completed the lift faster than a lot of lifters complete their opening attempts. The crowd was stunned, the other team coaches were stunned and the Russians immediately started huddling to discuss Jesse's narrow stance and his speed under the bar. I guarantee they will continue to follow Jesse for years to come if he continues to lift in this sport.
Jesse would go on to go 6 for 6 in the rest of his lifts set a new personal record in the bench press and break the current World Record in the Deadlift with a 301.5 kilo (664.6lb) pull on his last attempt. This pull would also have Jesse owning the overall Total record as well with a 784 kilo or 1728lb total. Remember when I had said earlier that we were constantly having to update Jesse's goals...This morning Jesse had told me he really wanted to break the 780 kilo mark today. Oh yeah and after the opening round of deadlifts Jesse's nearest competitor was over 42 kilos behind and was not going to come close to catching him. The second place finisher, a Canadian, ended with a 692.5 total. (1526.7 lbs) almost 100 lbs behind Jesse. He accomplished his biggest goal...the 2010 World Championship!!!
I love these 2 kids and what they do and how the represent our state, our country and themselves. All of the coaches constantly comment on their positive attitudes and their preparedness. That we can all be proud of.