The growth of the South Korean weightlifting team is frightening. The team has raised its medal hopes for the Hangzhou Asian Games with a string of strong performances in each weight class at the recently concluded World Weightlifting Championships. Park Hye-jung (20-Goyang City Hall) won three titles in the women’s heavyweight category, and on the final day of competition, Lee Ji-sang (29-Gyeongnam-do) broke Yong-sang Lee’s Korean record in the men’s heavyweight category 메이저놀이터.
Lee set a new Korean record with a lift of 241 kilograms in the third phase of the men’s 109 kilograms and above competition at the 2023 World Weightlifting Championships in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Monday (June 18). The weight set by the Korean Weightlifting Federation in 2018 for the men’s heaviest weight class was 240 kilograms, and Lee lifted 1 kilogram more than that, breaking a record that hadn’t been broken in five years.
Although he failed to win a medal, the fact that he broke the Korean record is a huge accomplishment as Korean weightlifting has been following the rest of the world in this weight class. With a lift of 175 kilograms (18th place), a snatch of 241 kilograms (6th place) and a total of 416 kilograms (8th place), Lee fell short of the record set by Olympic champion Rusha Talakadze (29-Georgia), who won this weight class with a lift of 220 kilograms, a snatch of 253 kilograms and a total of 473 kilograms.
The World Weightlifting Championships were a chance to see a lot of promise from Korean athletes, with Park Hye-jung (20-Goyang City Hall) achieving a feat not even Jang Jang-ran had accomplished in the women’s heavyweight category the day before. Park lifted 124 kilograms in the snatch, 165 kilograms in the jerk, and 289 kilograms in the total to win gold in all three categories. The victory was all the more special because it came against her most formidable competition, Olympic champion Li Wenyuan (CHN).
South Korea finished sixth overall with one gold, two silver, and two bronze medals. Including the medals won in the respective weight classes, the men’s and women’s teams totaled 18 medals. This is a significant improvement from last year’s Games in Bogota, Colombia, where the team totaled only three bronze medals.
Won Jong-beom (27-Gangwon Provincial Office) and Jang Yeon-hak (26-Asan City Hall) won silver medals in the men’s 96kg category, while Jeong Aram (25-Incheon City Hall) and Park Min-kyung (26-Gyeongbuk Development Corporation) won bronze in the women’s 87kg category. All but Park will return to the Asian Games.
With a strong showing, the team will now turn their attention to the Asian Games. South Korea hasn’t won a gold medal since Jang Jang-ran in the women’s middleweight category at the 2010 Guangzhou Games, so the team has been training with the intention of breaking the 13-year gold drought. The Asian Games weightlifting will be held from Sept. 30 to Oct. 7.