Weightlifter Jourdan Delacruz (49KG) Sets 112-Kilogram Clean & Jerk American Record at 2023 Pan American Championships

Delacruz brought home the States' first win of the competition.

The United States tends to do very, very well at the Pan American Weightlifting Championships, thanks in no small part to the power and grace of weightlifters like Jourdan Delacruz. On Mar. 27, 2023, Delacruz led the charge for Team USA when she clinched a gold medal in the 49-kilogram division — setting two new records in the process.

Delacruz capped off a stellar day on the weightlifting platform with her 112-kilogram, or 246.9-pound, clean & jerk. This not only guaranteed her the gold medal in the Total but advanced the American record (which she previously held) by a single kilo in addition to being a Pan American record. Check it out: 

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Delacruz’s victory in Bariloche, Argentina, where the competition is running from Mar. 25 to Apr. 2, was a return to form. In 2022, she took silver behind teammate Hayley Reichardt, who won with a one-kilogram margin (192 to 191).

One year later, Delacruz took the top of the podium back, again, by one kilo (198 to 197). Both athletes snatched 86 kilograms, or 189.5 pounds.

Neck and Neck

Delacruz and Reichardt are not only two of the States’ best female weightlifters, but they’re also each other’s toughest competition in the region. Both compete in the 49-kilogram division and, when they attend the same event, tend to finish with nearly identical performances: 

2023 Pan American Championships

  • Jourdan Delacruz: 198KG Total
  • Hayley Reichardt: 197KG Total 

2022 World Weightlifting Championships

  • Jourdan Delacruz: 191KG Total
  • Hayley Reichardt: 194KG Total

2022 Pan American Championships

  • Jourdan Delacruz: 191KG Total
  • Hayley Reichardt: 192KG Total

2020 Pan American Championships (Held 2021)

  • Jourdan Delacruz: 200KG Total
  • Hayley Reichardt: 189KG Total

Delacruz and Reichardt’s rivalry is advantageous for the States’ presence on the international podium. However, only one of them has a realistic chance at making the Olympic team for the 2024 Games in Paris, France. 

With the adjustments to Olympic qualification set forth ahead of Paris ’24 encouraging a heavy Total above all else, Delacruz — who appeared at the 2020 Olympics but failed to register a Total — will have to contend with Reichardt on a regular basis at major international competitions for roughly the next 15 months. 

Draped in Gold

Above all else, Delacruz put forth a stellar performance in Argentina and set the tone for the rest of the American competitors to follow. A new American and Pan American record in the clean & jerk is commendable, but Delacruz also registered her highest international Total in two years’ time. She’s got the Paris podium locked in her sights. 

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