Olds resident Zachary Latimer, a previous two-time Canadian Junior national bronze medallist, won the best junior male weightlifter title at the Ogopogo open weightlifting contest near Kelowna last month.
Latimer was up against male and female lifters from across Western Canada.
The lifts Latimer made were 110 kilograms (kg) in the snatch and 140 kg in the clean and jerk for a total of 250 kg, giving him a Sinclair coefficient rating of 311. The Sinclair coefficient is a way of comparing people in different weight classes.
Latimer said prior to the event, he hadn’t done his best training, but still felt confident that he was strong enough to do decently.
“I didn’t do as well as I wanted to in Ogopogo weight wise, but I guess it was still enough to win the title of best junior male,” Latimer said. “I was aiming to do 120 kg snatch and 145 kg clean and jerk.”
This placed him first amongst the junior male lifters and he is currently the top junior lifter in Western Canada.
Latimer has been weightlifting for three years. Before weightlifting, he played hockey but had to quit due to concussions.
His father, also a weightlifter previously, encouraged Latimer to try the sport.
The biggest challenge in his three years has been learning the technique.
“It’s a really technical sport, so it takes a lot of time to put in to get the technique to where it’s supposed to be,” said Latimer.
When looking to the future Latimer has his sights on some big goals.
“My end goal probably would be to either go to the Olympics or the Commonwealth Games,” he said.
“Goals that I hope to happen in the next year or two would be to go to Junior Worlds which is in Fiji next year.”
Meanwhile, Latimer will next compete at the Alberta Provincial Jr. Championships Oct. 27 in Edmonton.
“I’m hoping to set some new records for the weight category that I’m in and hopefully win my weight class and best junior male lifter again,” he said in anticipation of that event.