Team USA has a bright future in weightlifting. On May 3, 2022, 61-kilogram Hampton Morris took to the stage at the 2022 International Weightlifting Federation‘s (IWF) Junior World Championships in Heraklion, Greece. There, Morris ascended to the top of the podium by snatching 116 kilograms (255.7 pounds) and clean & jerking 160 kilograms (352.7 pounds).
Morris’ 160-kilogram jerk is both an IWF Junior World Record and a new Senior American Record in the 61-kilogram class. Morris bested his own 156-kilogram American Record, which he set late in 2021, as well as the former Junior World Record of 159 kilos, held by Uzbek lifter Adkhamjon Ergashev.
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According to the IWF’s official results page for the 2022 Junior World Championships, 18-year-old Morris took home the gold medals in the clean & jerk and total, though he did fall somewhat short during the snatch.
My training felt really good going into this competition.
Morris missed his opening and subsequent attempt at 116 kilograms before securing it on his third and final try. BarBend caught up with Morris over text to find out more about how he handled the competition:
“My training felt really good going into this competition. I was hoping for a better snatch day, but [snatches] aren’t my strength. After my third attempt I was just relieved that I had made one and could move onto the clean & jerks.”
2022 Junior World Weightlifting Championships Men’s 61-Kilogram Podium
- Hampton Morris (USA) — 116/160/276
- Kaan Kahriman (TUR) — 126/143/269
- Solis Daniel Stiven Caicedo (COL) — 121/146/267
Note: The notation above refers to the athletes’ results in the snatch, clean & jerk, and Total, respectively. The Total, a combination of their best lift in each discipline, determines their final placement on the podium.
Despite finishing in sixth position at the conclusion of the snatches, Morris established a commanding lead in the second half of the event thanks to his tremendous leg strength and proficient technique in the clean & jerk. He finished with a comfortable seven-kilogram lead over runner-up Kahriman of Turkey when all was said and done.
Hampton Morris, Record Holder
Hampton Morris has achieved higher accolades in weightlifting before his 20th birthday than many athletes claim throughout their entire careers. Morris owns a slew of American records across the Youth, Junior, and Senior age divisions.
Notably, Morris also won the 2021 Youth World Weightlifting Championships in October of that year, and is one of the only American lifters to have set Youth World Records at international competitions (he joined fellow athletes Clarence “CJ” Cummings Jr. and Harrison Maurus in that regard).
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[Related: International Weightlifting Federation Selects Colombia to Host 2022 World Championships]
Since 2019, Morris has finished in first place at every IWF event he’s attended as part of Team USA:
- 2019 Pan-American Youth Championships
- 2020 Pan-American Junior Championships
- 2021 Youth World Championships
- 2021 Pan-American Championships
- 2022 Junior World Championships
Morris Has the Momentum
At the 2022 USA Weightlifting (USAW) North American Open Series I, Morris took to the stage for the first time as a 67-kilogram lifter and set some personal records in the process — 120 kilograms (264.5 pounds) in the snatch and 164 kilograms, or 361.5 pounds, in the clean & jerk.
Morris may make the occasional appearance at 67 kilograms for domestic competitions if he doesn’t want to cut weight. That said, roughly one month after the American Open Series I, the IWF and International Olympic Committee published the finalized competitive categories for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
The 67-kilogram class didn’t make the cut for the upcoming quad, but the 61-kilogram division is on the docket. Since he already has an impeccable resume in the division, it’s likely that Morris will continue to extend his own 61-kilogram records in the near future — Morris tells BarBend that he’s eyeballing the 2022 Senior Pan-American Championships as his next big competition.
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.
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