A 22 year-old University of Sheffield student has set an astonishing new powerlifting world record at the Powerlifting World Championships in Sweden.
Cherry Yeung, a materials engineering student, broke the world record in the Junior Women’s under-43kg class, as she lifted a total of 313.5kg, including a whopping 146kg deadlift.
Speaking about her extraordinary feat, Cherry said: “I’ve been eyeing up on that world record for a whole year now and I’m so over the moon to finally have my name down on the record books.
“I knew for sure I had it in me, so I felt confident walking up to the bar. The moment it happened I was on the verge of tears and words cannot describe how happy I was that my hard work had paid off.”
Cherry has previously competed in the UK but describes the competition from other countries as much tougher than anything she has faced before.
“When I’ve competed in the UK, in both divisional and national levels, I was the only under-43 lifter as there are just not many women in between 18 and 22 years old who weigh this little,” she said.
“There was definitely a difference in having other competition and I was a little distracted during it and was paying more attention than I should have to what the others were doing.”
Having first started going to the gym as a New Year’s resolution in January 2017, Cherry never believed at first that she would ever represent Team GB on the international stage.
However, through commitment, resilience, and patience, she realised her potential and was able to take that extra step from powerlifting in the gym to doing it in competitions.
With the support she received after her first competition in January 2018, she knew that competing in nationals would be something she could excel at.
“When I watched the World Championships last year, I realised my total in the January competition would have won me the World Championship title in 2018,” said Cherry.
“That was when I knew for sure what I wanted for myself in 2019 and in May 2018 I pulled a 140kg deadlift in the gym which was the current world record.
“From lifting just the 20kg barbell in the gym to representing Team GB internationally plus taking a world title and a world record, it has definitely been a tough journey and is not something that has been as easy as it may seem.
“Training is not always filled with up’s and I have definitely faced my down’s this year, when turning up to almost every session for six months to deadlift just wasn’t really moving as I’d hoped, but I’m really proud of myself for sticking with it and not giving up.”
Looking ahead, Cherry has her sights on breaking more records and challenging in more competitions.
“I am now hoping to bulk up a weight class as my world record deadlift is also the European deadlift record for the weight class above.
“I hope to do this all again next year as an under-47 junior lifter.”