A weightlifting champ from St Catherine’s College has notched up two British records and five junior world records in her first two competitions.
Fourteen-year-old Lara Bennett is a Year 9 student at the school in Priory Road. She only began weightlifting a few months ago and after just four training sessions competed in her first contest and set new records.
The two under 18 competitions she has taken part in so far are the International All Round Weightlifting Association British Grip Championship, where she received the award for the best junior lifter, and the Postal League Competition, where she achieved two British records and five junior world records.
Lara lives in Langney and trains and competes at Metamorfit gym in Courtlands Road.
She discovered a talent for weightlifting after her mum took part in a summer boot camp and encouraged Lara to go along. The pair now attend weekly training sessions at the gym and regularly practise at home.
St Catherine’s College headteacher, Solomon Berhane, said: “We’re delighted to hear of Lara’s achievements and she obviously has a natural flair as she’s broken records so early in her weightlifting career.
“We’ll be keeping a close eye on her progress in future competitions and wish her continued success.”
Although in the future Lara could take part in competitions around the UK and in other countries, so far she’s stayed close to home as her competitions have taken place at Metamorfit.
Lara’s keeping it in the family as her mum Maria has also achieved several world records lifting in the competitions with Lara. Maria said: “Lara’s always been quite strong. Even as a young girl she could pick up things we didn’t think she should be able to. We’re quite a sporty family and Lara has played cricket for years. This is a bit different and we’re really enjoying a new challenge.”
Lara’s junior world records are: Two-handed Fulton deadlift, lifting 47.5kg, Two-handed thumbless deadlift, lifting 65kg, Two inch bar deadlift, lifting 75kg, One handed barbell snatch, lifting 15kg, Lateral raise lying, lifting 10kg
Her British records are: Continental clean and jerk, lifting 30kg, Front squat, lifting 45kg.
Lara’s next competition is later this month.