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European Youth Championships 2003 Report 

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European Youth Championships 2003:
Report and pictures

Belgian Team, Richard Goegebuer, Sarah De Coster, Tom Goegebuer

This year the Germans took care of the organization of the European Championships for youth.
With Sarah De Coster Belgium had the first competitor in this " European schoolboys an schoolgirls  championships" and I had the honor to coach her.

2003 marked the first year with participants till 17 years old so already from the start it was obvious that the level would largely surpass the previous ones. Until last year the age limit for the boys and girls was 16 years (and in Belgium it still is).
Besides a participation record also several European records were broken.
The results can be checked on the official website: http://www.gewichtheben-nrw.de/jem/english/index.htm
The best male lifter was Greek Nikolaos Kourtidis who lifted 155 kg + 195 kg in the class -85 kg with 410 sinclair points. 
The best female (230 sinclair) was Turkish heavyweight Ummuhan Ucar who snatched 95 kg and jerked 120 kg at a bodyweight of 75.5 kg.  Right behind was the 2 years younger Italian super talent Genny Caterina Pagliaro with 22 sinclair.

The training was in a small backroom of the Dortmund Westfalen soccer stadium. It was small, there were only two women barbells, it was difficult to find and at first there was no magnesium.  But actually it was the only weak point of the organization (besides the fact that the pre- weigh-in in the morning only opened 5 minutes before the official weigh-in).

Sarah in training
Sarah De Coster only started lifting two years ago as a complementary training for her athletics (hammer throwing and pole-vaulting). With basic techniques and no international experience she had to face the best of Europe's. Nerves prevented her from equaling her best total but still she managed to hook up with the European top in the class till 53 kg with 40 snatch and 60 jerk. 

Sarah De Coster, -53 kg, training for the european championships Sarah De Coster, -53 kg, training in Dortmund

The competition hall and warm-up were very nice. They used the athletics indoor hall Helmut Körnig and the hotels were within 10 minutes walking.

Opening Ceremony

Opening Ceremony European Championships Dortmund

Warm -up of the 53 kg. On the right picture you can see one of the best senior lifters in the-58 kg: Michaela Breeze from Great Britain, this time coaching.


Warming up 53 kg, Sarah De Coster Belgium

Warming up Sarah De Coster -53 kg, Belgium

The female team from Finland:
Sini Kukkonen (-48 kg), Anna Everi (-53 kg), Katariina Vestman (-63 kg)

Finnish Female team, Kukkonen Sini, Everi Anna, Vestman Katariina

Action Pictures:

-48 kg women 


Sarah Blasnik, Germany, -48 kg

Sarah Blasnik: 

This 14 year old girl from Germany reached 7th place  -48 kg , with 60 kg snatch and 72.5 kg clean and jerk. 

Zinaida Niznika (-48 kg) from Latvia

Zinaida Niznika from Latvia:

6th place in -48 kg with 60 kg snatch and 75 kg jerk.

One of the most amazing results was achieved by an Italian girl from 1988. 
Her appearance alone is already remarkable. With her extremely short muscled legs, comparatively long upper-body and short arms, she seems to be a product of biological engineering :-). 
Genny Caterina Pagliaro was already fourth at the junior world championships earlier this year and with a snatch of 75 kg and a jerk of 85 kg she left the other lifters in Dortmund far behind. This snatch result would have given her even a medal in the European Senior championships!!!  Will she become the female Suleymanoglu?
Pagliaro Genny Caterina, Italia -48 kg Pagliaro, Genny Caterina -48 kg, Italy

Özlem Bilmez Turkish Özlem Bilmez became 3rd in -53 kg with 65 snatch and 85 kg jerk. 


Sarah De Coster from Belgium with Pagliaro and Allemano from Italy

Sarah De Coster (-53 kg) from Belgium with Italian wondergirl Pagliaro (-48 kg) and Italian Sara Allemano (-53 kg)




 Copyright © Tom Goegebuer                                   last update: 2003-08-25