This weekend our team travels out to Valley Forge Pennsylvania to compete in the American Open Series 2. We have 8 in house athletes competing this weekend from PFP Barbell. This will be our first large competition as a team as part of East Coast Gold and as an organization we have over 50 athletes competing this weekend. Our team is without a doubt much better than we were at the Arnold and I am excited to see what our folks can do with 6 more months of hard training and experience. Lets take a look at who is lifting and what we can expect out of them! The event will be live webcast here : www.teamusa.org/USA-Weightlifting/LIVE/live-stream
Gerald Spencer 77E (195 entry total)
6:00am Weigh in
Gerald leads the way this weekend as our first athlete to compete. This should be one of the more interesting sessions of our entire weekend. Gerald has had a great cycle of training over the last few months, he is stronger and better technically than he has ever been. Gerald is one of our BEST competitors on meet day, as meet day gets closer he zones in and gets more and more focused. If we handle our end as coaches and he handles his end as an athlete he should have a big big day!
Andre J. Ainsworth 62B (130kg entry total)
8:15am Weigh in
Andre come up next! I am so excited to see Andre lift , if we gave out a "Most Improved" award for this training cycle , he would be hands down favorite. Over the past few months his technique has improved leaps and bounds . Andre's strength numbers are up as well. As one of our most experienced competitors , I wouldn't be surprised with some big PR's in both lifts. Andre is well prepared and ready to go!
Marisa Galli 58D ( 118kg entry Total)
10:30am Weigh in
1230 pm Lift
Marisa starts if off for our Women's team at the AO2 . We couldn't have a better person to kick things of for our awesome ladies! As an Athlete, Marisa does all of the things that you need to do to be successful . She has crushed her training, recovery , nutrition, and just absorbs coaching like a champ. Its seems like every single meet she levels up and realizes more and more how good of a weightlifter she can be. In front of friends and family in front of a hometown crowd she has a chance to smash all of her previous bests. I cannot say enough about her as an athlete and a person , this should be a good one!
Laura Scheirer Woodward 48A (112 Entry total)
12:45pm Weigh in
Laura is our last athlete to lift on Friday . Laura is one of our newest athletes , but is no stranger to weightlifting she has competed on the international level and is our only A group athlete of the weekend. Laura moved back to the area recently after training and living in the Wilmington Area with Walt at Wilmington Weightlifting Club . She has trained hard to fix some technical faults and this should be a good breakthrough meet for her. Physically and mentally , Laura has turned a corner and should have a wonderful day .
Maggie Duer 63C (135 Entry Total)
8:30am Weigh in
Mighty Marge kicks off Day 2 for the team. This will be Maggie's second meet back from a 2 year hiatus in the sport. She is ready to build upon her 6 for 6 performance in her meet from a few month ago . Her legs are back and she is stronger than ever. She has all the tools to improve on her total big time from last meet. Maggie is a fierce competitor so I fully expect her to use the atmosphere to her full advantage .
Dom Gomez 94D (225 Entry Total)
1:30pm Weigh in
Dom is coming off a tough rotation and a PCL injury to make is comeback at the AO2. Technically he continues to get better and better and all his rehab has really brought up some weaknesses. Depending on how he feels he should be in great position to push for a few PR's along his comeback trail . This should be a great session to watch I feel like Dom is ready for something special .
Brandi Darby 90C (126kg Entry Total)
6:20 PM weigh in
Brandi Closes out Day 3 for us. Brandi has all the tools to bring down the house! This should be an great session for a lot of reasons . Another candidate for most improved weightlifter this training cycle, there is not one aspect of her lifting that hasn't improved tremendously . Brandi can lift as much weight as she wraps her head around. If her mind is right I think she will surprise everyone (including herself) . This is a great opportunity for her to level up and start to realize how great she can be .
Tonja Ayala 90+B (95kg Entry Total )
7:00am Weigh in
Tonja is our final lifter of the weekend. This is a great chance for her to get some practice on the big stage before she moves into the 55+ age group for next years Master's Nationals. She has been working hard and consistently improving on her technique and mobility all year. When she puts it all together this weekend she should be at or around the National Records in her new age group in 2019 . I'm excited for her to get more experience under her belt so she can start to truly shine .
Every one of our lifters is in a position to improve significantly from their last showing. I am excited to coach this group of athletes at the AO. As a group is has been a pleasure to watch them grow and develop over the last few months and this should be a great weekend for all . See you guys in Philly!
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Coaches and Athletes will be contributing to this blog. We will be discussing lifting tips, smashing goals, and much more.