27 November 2023
Bangor University’s; Canolfan Brailsford was the location of the event over the first weekend of December, with lifters gunning for gold for the title of Welsh Champion.
Saturday saw the Welsh Senior Championships take place. In the first session, Seth Casidsid was off to a flying start, managing a total of 202kg to take top spot in the M61 Class.
Garin Beams managed a total of 210kg to take gold in the M67 Class, while Michael Farmer won the M73 Class.
The day progressed with the audience witnessing some fantastic efforts in an incredibly competitive W55 and W59 Classes.
Madeline Connelly put in a brilliant performance to snatch 74kg and jerk 91kg for a total of 165kg to take top spot in the W55 Class, followed by Sinead Lenihan and Emily Baron who took silver and bronze respectively, with Nikole Roberts following in fourth place.
Charlotte Whalley achieved gold in the W59 Class with a total of 163kg, followed closely by Catrin Jones’ silver medal-worthy total of 161kg. Dionn Hargreaves put in a wonderful performance achieving her third-place podium in that category, with Lindsay Atkinson and Kirstie Milne narrowly missing out. The competitive spirit of this session was electric and an enjoyment to spectate.
The M89, M96, M102 AND M109+ Classes then followed, and were packed with exciting lifting.
Edward Gibson put in a sensational performance, snatching 120kg and jerking a new Welsh record of 155kg for a total of 275kg, also a new Welsh record, and gold in the M89 Class! Theo Morris and Oliver Goodwin filled the remaining podium positions with totals of 265kg and 259kg respectively, while Timothy Williams, Luke Fletcher and Oliver Cooke putting on a great display of lifting.
Harry Nelms was next to stand tall on the podium; achieving a total of 275kg for gold in the M96 Class power snatching 120kgs and power clean and jerking 155kgs, while Taylor Probets got his first Welsh Senior title for a total of 231kg in the M102 Class.
The audience were then treated to a competition-high total by Joseph Walton in the M109+ Class. Snatching 130kg and jerking 170kg, Joseph earned gold with a terrific total of 300kg.
The W64 Class didn’t disappoint following Joseph’s performance, with Molly Greenwood earning top spot courtesy of a brilliant performance in which she managed a huge total of 180kg. That total, along with her clean and jerk of 98kg also earned her new Welsh U23 records!
The silver and bronze medals in the W64 Class were taken by Jennifer Potter, for a total of 170kg, and Bethan Watkins, for a total of 169kg, respectively. Not far behind were Chase Clark, Annie Clay and Janine Dovey in that category.
Two lifters competed fiercely for gold in the W76 Class, with Ellis Thomas coming out victorious with a total of 157kg, beating Nadine Kehely’s total of 153kg.
The W71 Class provided a captivating show as Chloe Hood won gold for a total of 190kg, for which she snatched 82kg and jerked an incredible 108kg, earning three new Welsh U23 records as well as top spot. Megan Dixon earned silver for her total of 171kg, and Tracy Rosser came third, with Holly Knowles in fourth position. Special mention to Ronin Strength guest lifter Natasha Osgood. With the backing of an incredibly supportive crowd, Tash lifted a huge total of 180kg.
In the W81 class, Emma McCready displayed an incredible ability to perform under pressure. After missing her first two clean and jerks, Emma smoked her final attempt at 107kg. Her fantastic title-winning total of 197kg was followed by 171kg that Ella Beard and Cerys Head both managed in that category.
Niamh Collins capped off the Welsh Senior Championships with a total of 178kg to claim gold in the W87 Class, before Sunday saw a special moment at the Welsh Para-Powerlifting Championships.
U17 lifter Evelyn Thomas, competing at W64 Class, made all three of her attempts to claim her gold medal, benching 62kg, 65kg, then 67kg to also set a new Welsh record at U17 level and send the admiring audience into raucous applause!
Congratulations to all competitors who made it a brilliant watch over the weekend, and well done to our Welsh champions for 2023.
Whilst we celebrate the highs of these competitions, it is important to acknowledge that for some, this day is every lifter’s worst nightmare.
We would like to take the opportunity to address those lifters that were unable to put together a total on the day. More often than not, we leave no stone unturned in our build-up to a competition, controlling the controllables to ensure every success. We often forget that we are not machines, and these things can be uncontrollable, even with the best warm-up.
We know it hurts. We hope you know that your performance is not a reflection of you, and your result does not negate the countless brilliant performances you have all had throughout your lifting career thus far, nor does it stop the countless brilliant performances that are coming your way in 2024, and thereafter. This is valuable experience.
Weightlifting Wales would also like to thank Bangor University and all of our volunteer technical officials; Stephen Donovan, Caroline Charles, Sarah Hilton, Ed Halstead, Farzad Alahyari, Sandra Smith, Sean Gaffney, Sophie Harrison, and Weightlifting Wales Chair, Jo Calvino.
Furthermore, Weightlifting Wales would also like to personally thank Harry Haggard, Hrithik Reddy, Alicia Piper, Nell McDonagh, Joseph Walton, Lindsey Atkinson, Sinead Lenihan and Dionn Hargreaves for their generosity in loading sessions over the weekend and ensuring each session ran to time.
Without volunteers our competitions are not possible, your kindness does not go unnoticed.
Our next event will be held in Cardiff’s Club 646 Weightlifting and Dragon Athletic for the Welsh Masters Open and Age Group Championships, the weekend of January 20th.
We wish you all the best in your training and hope you all have a wonderful holiday season.