TOKYO, Japan (July 24, 2021) – Jourdan Delacruz kicked off competition for the U.S. Olympic Weightlifting Team on the first day of medal events at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
In her first Olympic appearance, the 23-year-old Delacruz had a strong snatch performance in the A session of the women’s 49kg bodyweight category on Saturday afternoon at the Tokyo International Forum.
Delacruz opened up with a successful 83kg lift before also hitting her second attempt of 86kg.
The Wylie, Texas, native then aimed to match her Pan American snatch record of 89kg, and appeared to have made it, celebrating jubilantly before learning two of three judges had ruled it “no lift.” After a challenge, the call was upheld due to press-out.
“Mentally, I was ok,” Delacruz said of refocusing after her third snatch attempt. “It didn’t really bother me clean and jerking. I’m still really proud of myself.”
Still, Delacruz’s 86kg snatch was good for second in that lift behind China’s Hou Zhihu’s 94kg, an Olympic record in the new weight class.
Delacruz set the Pan American and American records of 89kg (snatch), 111kg (clean and jerk) and 200kg (total) just three months ago at the Pan American Championships in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
In the clean and jerk in Tokyo, though, she was unable to make a successful lift. Initially listed with an opening of 102kg, Delacruz’s opener was increased to 108kg, which she missed three times, unsure of what happened.
“It felt a little bit heavier, but warmup was really good, so sometimes it just doesn’t pull out on the platform,” she explained.
Hou won gold with an Olympic record total of 210kg, followed by India’s Mirabai Chanu (202kg) and Indonesia’s Windy Aisah (194kg).
With Olympic medals only awarded for totals in weightlifting, Delacruz finished without a final placement.
“I feel like, looking back, I put everything that I had out there,” she said. “Sometimes things like this just happen, and it sucks, but I don’t regret anything.”
Delacruz still enjoyed her Olympic debut, saying she had been focused on being present and living in the moment for her few days in Tokyo.
She will soon return to Hawaii, the site of USA Weightlifting’s Tokyo Strong training camp, to enjoy downtime with family and reunite with her teammates, who have already been sending supportive messages.
Team USA resumes weightlifting competition on Wednesday, July 28, when four-time junior world champion CJ Cummings competes in the men’s 73kg at 7:50 p.m. local time/12:50 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (late Tuesday night).
Cummings and Delacruz are part of an eight-member U.S. Olympic Weightlifting Team – the largest and first full one in 25 years – that also includes Wes Kitts, Harrison Maurus, Kate Nye, Sarah Robles, Mattie Rogers and Caine Wilkes.