SPORTS

Sarah Robles Wins The First U.S. Weightlifting Medal Since 2000

The Mexican-American weightlifter went to Rio to "inspire young Latino athletes."
Sarah Elizabeth Robles reacts while competing during the Women's weightlifting +75kg event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on A
Sarah Elizabeth Robles reacts while competing during the Women's weightlifting +75kg event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on August 14, 2016.

The weight, ahem, is over. Sarah Robles won the United States’ first Olympic weightlifting medal since 2000 Sunday, capturing a bronze in the 75-plus kilogram division. 

“This means a lot, to be on the podium and give exposure to our sport at a time when it’s already growing,” Robles said, per Reuters. “It’s good not just for me, but for women of size, for women who want to get up off the couch and do something different.”

 

Robles, shown celebrating, had a combined lift total of 286 kilograms.
Robles, shown celebrating, had a combined lift total of 286 kilograms.

Robles, from Desert Hot Springs, California, had a trying journey to the Rio podium. After placing seventh at London 2012, the athlete served a two-year ban for testing positive for a banned substance in 2013, losing financial support, according to California newspaper The Desert Sun.

 

 

She said she unwittingly took an over-the-counter supplement that contained the prohibited substance. “I know I’m a good honest person and if I put hard work in I would be able to reach my goals,” she said, per Reuters.

Robles, who served a two-year ban from her sport, said of the bronze, "This means a lot."
Robles, who served a two-year ban from her sport, said of the bronze, "This means a lot."

Robles, who is Mexican-American, said before the games that she wanted to inspire other Latinos. “As an Olympic athlete, I represent all Americans, but representing Latinos and Latinas is a great honor.”

 

Robles’ medal is even more monumental considering that no American man has medaled since 1984, Deadspin noted.

 Only two American women ― Tara Nott (gold, Sydney 2000) and Cheryl Haworth (bronze, Sydney 2000) ― have earned hardware in Olympic history, according to NBC. Robles had a combined total of 286 kilograms, finishing behind gold medalist Meng Suping of China (307kg) and silver medalist Kim Kuk-hyang of North Korea (306kg). The latter had also previously served a drug suspension.

Robles' bronze is just the third U.S. women's weightlifting medal in Olympic history.
Robles' bronze is just the third U.S. women's weightlifting medal in Olympic history.

World record holder Tatiana Kashirina of Russia, who earned a silver in London, did not compete because she was banned for past doping along with other Russian lifters, Yahoo reported.

 

 

 

 
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