Before Monday night, no two American women stood together atop a medal stand at a World Weightlifting Championships. That changed in Pattaya, Thailand, when Kate Nye and Mattie Rogers took gold and silver, respectively, during a magical and historic 71kg session at the 2019 IWF World Weightlifting Championships.
In the snatch, Nye took gold lifting a best 112kg – a new Junior World Record. It also set new Junior & Senior American and Junior & Senior Pan American Records.
“Going into that last attempt, I wasn’t going to take anything but 112kg. I wanted that world record,” Nye said. “I’ve missed 112kg before, and I knew if I had another shot, I was going to seize the moment, I was just elated. I cannot describe the happiest I felt up on that stage.”
Nye missed 106kg on her opening snatch attempt but successfully lifted 107kg on her second.
A strong showing for Rogers too in the snatch. She made her opener at 103kg then made 106kg. Rogers missed 108kg on her third attempt.
“The first two snatches felt great, so did the third, but it wasn’t there today,” Rogers said.
In the clean & jerk, Rogers made her opening attempt at 130kg, then made 134kg. She missed 137kg on her final attempt. But her performance gave her a silver in the clean & jerk and a silver in total with 240kg, a personal best.
“I was definitely a little tired going into the clean and jerks, the second was a personal best by 2 kilograms. The third was a little wild and crazy,” Rogers said. “I’m really happy to be here. I was here for myself more than anything else. I was not after a medal, I was not after a total, I was not here for any particular person. I was here to just have fun and I think we did a really good job of doing that.”
But it was Nye who controlled in the clean & jerk session. After making her opening 131kg attempt, she came back with a good 136kg lift, to lock up a clean sweep of gold. She missed her third clean & jerk attempt at 141kg but took home the title with a 248kg total- new American and Pan American records.
“I am happy that I did what I had to do for the win. As an athlete, you’re trained to not be satisfied with what you do, then you’re not going to make any progress. Leaving 141kg out there, I was proud of what I was done, I knew I had that in me,” Nye said. “It was kind of a punch to the stomach.”
At age 20, Nye became the youngest of the United States’ four women senior world champions in history. Nye joins a hallowed list of world champions. Karyn Marshall won in the inaugural women’s world weightlifting championships in 1987. Olympian Robin Goad won in 1994 and Olympic Bronze Medalist Sarah Robles took home gold in 2017.
It’s been 30 years since two American women athletes stood on a medal stand together in a world weightlifting championship. In 1989, Marshall and Carol Cady took home silver and bronze, respectively.
Rogers also rewrote history Monday. She’s the first American women to medal at three consecutive World Championships since Goad four-peated from 1991, 1992, 1993 and 1994, when she was crowned world champion. Goad also medaled at three-consecutive World Championships 1987, 1988 and 1989.
These two women now share a page in American Weightlifting history. For Nye, it was who she lifted with that made this experience even more special.
“Mattie is someone I have been looking up to since the beginning of my career. Chasing her and making it on teams with her, it’s been a whirlwind of emotions,” Nye said. “She’s a great role model and ambassador to our sport. It’s just been awesome to share a podium with an inspirational athlete.”
In the afternoon session, Jordan Cantrell (Mash Mafia Weightlifting, Clovis, CA) took the stage in the men’s 89kg B session.
Jordan went a perfect three-for-three in snatch, lifting 153kg, 157kg and 160kg, tying his personal best and a seven-kilogram improvement from the 2019 Pan American Championships.
“The goal was 160 or more, I am glad I got it,” Cantrell said. “Thanks to everyone who stayed up really late to watch me, I know the time difference is brutal, but I couldn’t do this without your support.”
In the clean & jerk, Cantrell lifted 185kg in his opener. He missed 189kg on his second attempt but came back and made a 190kg. His 350kg total was a personal best in international competition.
Tuesday’s action at the World Championships features Jason Bonnick (Vero Beach Weightlifting, Loxahatchee, FL) in the 96kg C session at 10AM local time. That session will be streamed at http://usaw.live.
Then at 2:25PM local time, Nathan Damron (Mash Mafia Weightlifting, Winston-Salem, NC) takes the platform in the men’s 96kg B session. You can watch that on espn3.