Teen lifter Collier breaks records en route to GB Youth title

By Nick HopeBBC Olympic sports reporter
Alex Collier
Alex Collier is the 69kg British schoolboy and British Youth champion

British schoolboy champion Alex Collierexternal-link broke two national records en route to claiming the 69kg GB Youth Championship title.

The 17-year-old from Manchester lifted 100kg in the snatch, before a record 128kg in the clean and jerk, ensuring a record-breaking total of 228kg.

"I was pretty pleased as it felt quite easy," reflected a buoyant Collier.

He is one of several exciting prospects in the GB set-up, led by Commonwealth bronze medallist Zoe Smith.

Great Britain's leading male lifter is Commonwealth silver medallist Peter Kirkbride.

Such has been Collier's progress since taking up the sport less than four years ago, it's though that the teenager could have a chance of joining Kirkbride and claim one of the three lifting positions for British men at the 2012 Olympics.

"My performances have been improving steadily over the last few months so I'm hoping to continue training and set some more records on the way," said Collier.

His performance came off the back of finishing 17th at the World Youth Championships in Lima, Peru - a minor blimp following an impressive year, which in addition to becoming a British schoolboy champion also saw him claim second place at the inaugural tri-nations competitionexternal-link earlier this year.

"My performance at the World Youths wasn't my best, but I knew I just had to sort out my technique and I'm pretty pleased with my lifts (100kg and 128kg)," said Collier after victory at the British Youth Championships in Lilleshall, Shropshire.

Other winners included Parkhead's Mitchell Arkle, who at just 14 years-of-age totalled an impressive 118kg in the 50kg class and 15-year-old Robert Smith of Kilmarnock, claiming the 56kg class with a total of 116kg.

The next major competition for Britain's leading young lifters is likely to be the European Youth Championshipsexternal-link in Poland in August.