North Korea's Om Yun Chol on Sunday joined an exclusive group of weightlifters
who have lifted three times their body weight in the clean and jerk.
According to Om, it was all thanks to the "Great Leader."
Om, who stands just 1.52 meters
tall, also set an Olympic record when he cleared 168 kilograms in the clean and
jerk in the men's 56-kilogram category — and immediately gave all the credit to
former North Korean leader Kim Jong-il.
any man possibly lift 168kg? I believe the great Kim Jong-il looked over
me," Om was quoted as saying by the
Olympic News Service.
Om's achievement was even more
impressive considering he was competing in the "B'' group with
lower-ranked lifters. Medal contenders generally compete in the "A'' group
scheduled for later Sunday.
Om, who said he
wanted to lift a big weight to make his opponents nervous, must now wait to see
if any lifters in the "A'' can match his 293-kilogram total.
Only a handful
of lifters have cleared three times their body weight before, including Halil
Mutlu and Naim Suleymanoglu of Turkey.
"I am very
happy and give thanks to our Great Leader for giving me the strength to lift
this weight," Om said. "I believe
Kim Jong-il gave me the record and all my achievements. It is all because of