Hampton Morris Sets 3 American Records at 2024 European Weightlifting Championships

Hampton Morris made a great start for Team USA at the 2024 European Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria, an Olympic qualifying competition. Morris broke all three American national records in the 61-kilogram class — five kilograms more than his previous best total in qualifying for Paris 2024 — with the following lifts:

2024 European Championships Results — Hampton Morris, 61KG

Snatch — 126 kilograms

Clean & Jerk — 171 kilograms

Total — 297 kilograms

Morris went for a Junior world record clean & jerk of 173 kilograms on his final attempt. He made the lift but lost it in a jury review. Overall, Morris broke the American Junior and Senior snatch records and the Junior and Senior clean & jerk records. His first total of 294 broke the Junior and Senior American total records, and his second total broke those again, so eight records in all.

Image courtesy of Brian Oliver

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Morris totaled 16 kilograms more than the Bulgarian Gabriel Marinov, who won the European title with a 281-kilogram total comprised of a 121-kilogram snatch and a 160-kilogram clean & jerk. The Americans cannot win medals in Sofia, where they compete as guests, but their efforts count in the Olympic ranking lists.

The Americans were given permission by the IWF to lift in Europe when the US government advised them not to travel to Venezuela, the host nation for the 2024 Pan American Championships from Feb. 23-29.

Morris’s Lifts

Morris missed his opening snatch of 122 kilograms, made the second at the same weight, and broke the American national snatch record with 126 kilograms on his third. Gabe Chhum made the previous mark of 125 kilograms at the 2023 North American Open Finals in December.

In clean & jerk, Morris started after all the Europeans finished. Marinov’s best effort was 160 kilograms, and Morris opened on 168 kilograms. Morris got a majority verdict from the referees but had to wait until the jury reviewed the lift, checking whether his elbows had touched his knees in the clean. The video evidence was inconclusive, and it was deemed a good lift.

Morris broke his own American records in clean & jerk and total by making 171 kilograms on his second attempt. His third attempt on 173 kilograms also got a majority verdict from the referees, but this time, the jury ruled it a no-lift for bending and extending his left arm. There were no complaints.

What It Means

The top 10 in the rankings qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. Morris is now in a strong position after moving from 10th to seventh.

That was my only target here: improving my position in the rankings, and I did it.

“The last two weeks before this competition went very well. I was really happy with the way my snatch was moving, and so was my dad (coach Tripp),” said Morris. “I felt very good out there – the event here is amazing.”

Morris’s 297-kilogram total looks sure to be enough to qualify, so he could opt to weigh in and then sit out the final qualifier, the IWF World Cup in Phuket, Thailand, from March 31 to April 11. That is within the qualifying rules, but Morris is not keen on doing it.

“I want to compete again,” Morris said. “I’m feeling really confident going into my final preparations for the Olympics if I make the team.”

There’s no question of USAW not nominating Morris. Each nation can send a maximum of three men and three women to Paris, and Team USA has no other men currently in the top 10 of the four other weight categories.

Morris is the first of 15 Americans due to lift in Sofia, where the competition ends on Feb. 20, 2024.

Editor’s Note: BarBend is the Official Media Partner of USA Weightlifting. The two organizations maintain editorial independence unless otherwise noted on specific content projects.

DisclaimerBrian Oliver is an independent correspondent for BarBend. The views and opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily reflect his own. Oliver is not directly affiliated with any of BarBend’s existing media partnerships.

Featured image courtesy of Brian Oliver.

The post Hampton Morris Sets 3 American Records at 2024 European Weightlifting Championships appeared first on BarBend.


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