Teenage dreams come true for weightlifter Smith as local hero sets new British record
13:32 GMT, 30 July 2012
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Zoe Smith set a new British clean and jerk record and new personal best total in her first taste of the Olympic Games in front of electric home support at ExCeL, although the talented teenager is unlikely to contest the medal places.
The Greenwich-born 18-year-old, Great Britain's weightlifting poster girl, succeeded in her first snatch attempt of 90kg but – struggling with her bar grip and appearing nervous – failed in her following two at 93kg, with her previous personal best coming in at 92kg.
Raising the bar: Zoe Smith has set a new British clean and jerk record
But she calmed and redeemed herself in the clean and jerk element, equalling her personal best of 116, failing at 121, before succeeding in her final attempt at 121kg – beating Michaela Breeze's British record of 120kg set eight years ago.
It was enough to give her a total of 211kg, three kilos better than she managed at the European Championships in April although 1.5kg off the British record total.
Smith was competing among eight lifters in the B group and will not discover her final placing until those considered to be the elite A group athletes, another 11 lifters, take to the platform.
However, having come second behind Maria Alexandra Escobar Guerrero (226kg), the teenager – Commonwealth Games bronze medallist – could be in line for a top-10 finish.
Worth the weight: Zoe Smith was impressive as she competed in the 58kg
Local hero: Zoe Smith comes from Greenwich and has plenty of home support at the ExCel