Bay’s heavy-lifting Farquhar snatches hat-trick of records

Bay weightlifter Thomas Farquhar has earned his own piece of history after claiming three new South African records at the SA Senior Weightlifting championships in Cape Town at the weekend.
Farquhar set a hat-trick of records as his star continues to rise in the world of competitive Olympic lifting, claiming the snatch, clean and jerk and total records in the under 105kg division.
He is the SA champion in the division – despite still being classified as a junior – and made the weight for the under 105kg category by just 500 grams.
The ECX Dragon weightlifter set three new benchmarks with a 136kg snatch, a 172 clean and jerk, as well as claiming the gold medal for the highest total, which was recorded as 308kg.
He described it as another feather in his cap to go up a weight class and still manage to prove his mettle and gain medals in the process.
“This was the final competition in which to break the old South African records, seeing that the new weight divisions would soon be coming into play,” Farquhar said.
“I just tried to focus on each lift as it came. I tried not to put too much pressure on myself, especially since I was competing in a new weight class.”
Farquhar last took to the platform in September at the SA Under 14, Youth and Junior Weightlifting championships, where he competed in the 94kg division, and claimed three golds along with three SA records in the division.
He said the absence of his coach, Pieter Pretorius, who is on duty with Team SA at the world championships in Turkmenistan, played on his mind a bit, but did not worry him too much.
“It’s not often that I attend competitions without Coach Piet there, so this was something new,” Farquhar said.
“But I have a great support system behind me who keep pushing me to do my best.
“I had to toughen up and convince myself that I could do it on my own, just to show I don’t always need the coach to be by my side to achieve my best.”
Farquhar said going into the competition, he had not trained for a week as the gym was being rented out, so it played heavily on his mind whether or not he had done enough to prepare for the event.
Farquhar’s attention now turns back to training as he prepares for the Qatar Championships, scheduled to take place next month.
Meanwhile, 13-year-old weightlifting sensation Luane Viljoen also competed at the event and claimed gold in the 58kg category with a 50kg snatch and 62kg clean and jerk.
Luane, who was nominated as the Spar/The Herald Homegrowing Hero for the month of October, was ecstatic about the results and hoped this would open more doors for her.
Another lifter, Waldo Weyers, who is Farquhar’s training partner, competed in the 94kg division and took gold after producing a 119kg snatch and 156kg clean and jerk.

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