Passing the Test: Team USA Shines in Tokyo

By Kevin Farley with Team USA in Tokyo | July 07, 2019, 6:07 a.m. (ET)

Team USA had a strong showing on the Olympic stage as the READY STEADY TOKYO 2020 Olympic Games Test Event came to a close in Japan’s capital city Sunday.

Wes Kitts (109kg, California Strength) and Marissa Klingseis (87kg, Wesley Weightlifters) were Team USA’s sole lifters in the competition, held at the Tokyo International Forum, site of the weightlifting competition at next year’s Olympic Games.

Kitts gave Team USA a strong start, lifting 160kg then 165kg in the snatch. Kitts missed his third attempt at 170kg.

In the clean & jerk, Kitts made 195kg and 203kg, missing his 211kg third attempt.

“I would have liked to have made that 211kg clean & jerk,” Kitts said.

“We weren’t peaking here by any means, we were trying to get the experience in the venue, come see Tokyo. We got that done.”

Kitts’ 368kg total put him in 7th place. Kitts will represent Team USA later this month at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.

Klingseis claimed Team USA’s sole medal of the event, finishing with a silver and 236kg total.

In the snatch, Klingseis made her opener of 104kg, before missing 108kg twice on her second and third attempt.

“I am a little disappointed honestly, I was hoping to hit a lot more than I did. But somedays that’s how it goes,” Klingseis said. “The 108 wasn’t there today. They were PR attempts, so not too bad.”

Klingseis made her opening clean & jerk 132kg before missing 137kg twice. But her 236kg total was enough to land her on the podium.

Both Kitts and Klingseis got to experience the Olympic venue, and get a lay of the land at the Tokyo International Forum. One quirk of the layout for this test event, due to space constraints, the warm-up area was split into two different areas backstage.

“The athlete’s job back there is to prepare,” Kitts said. “The split backroom didn’t change anything for me. “


“Tokyo has been great,” Klingseis said. “I have been having a great time. Looking forward to tonight’s closing ceremony.”