Rio 2016: Talakhadze lifts world record to win weightlifting gold in the +105kg event

Lasha Talakhadze of Georgia won gold in the men's 105+kg event to bring a curtain down on the weightlifting at Rio 2016

Rio 2016: Talakhadze lifts world record to win weightlifting gold in the +105kg event
Lasha Talakhadze celebrates victory in the final Weightlifting event at Rio 2016 (image via: Clive Brunskill/Getty)

Pavilion 2 at the Riocentro has played host to the Weightlifting events at the Rio Olympics over the last fortnight, and following on from 14 other weight categories for the men and women, the blue-riband of the men's 105+kg bought competition to an end.

The biggest men in the sport of weightlifting thrilled the crowd, before Lasha Talakhadze from Georgia became Olympic champion with a combined winning World Record weight of 473kg over the Snatch and Clean and Jerk sections of the competition.

Gor Minasayan of Armenia won silver with 451kg's, with Talakhadze's fellow Georgian Irakli Turmanidze in bronze with 448kg.

Lasha Talakhadze of Georgia win's weightlifting gold (image via: Matthias Hangst/Getty)

World Record falls twice in stunning Snatch 

As with every other weightlifting gold medal which has been handed out over the past ten days, the Snatch lifts came first, with each of the lifters having three attempts to lift varying weights straight from the floor to an overhead position in one single motion. 

After a slow start to the competition, the final four lifters brought the crowd to life with a clinic in lifting. 

Georgia's Irakli Turmanidze took the lead with a new personal best lift of 207kg with his third attempt, before Armenia's 21-year-old Gor Minasyan put in a personal best of his own to wrestle the lead on 210kg's.

The 2nd Georgian in the form of Talakhadze equalled Minasyan's 210 with his second lift to join him at the top of the leaderboard, before lifting even more with his final attempt, Snatching 215kg for a new World and Olympic record. 

The opening salvo though, belonged to Iranian giant Behdad Salimikordasiabi, who was the heaviest man in the competition, weighing in at 167.9kg. After lifting 206 and 211 with his first two attempts, the London 2012 champion responded to seeing his world record in the Snatch taken from him by going one better and raising 216kg above his head for the lead at the halfway stage. 

Salimi fails Clean and Jerk, as Talakhadze becomes Olympic champion

The competition then moved onto the Clean and Jerk round, where the barbell is lifted above the head in two motions, cleaning it to the shoulders, before pausing and then jerking it overhead to lockout the lift, hoping for three white light's from the judges. 

An early shock saw Salimi lose any hope for a medal, after failing to complete a lift with any three of his attempt's. Starting at 245kg, Salimi thought he was successful with his first and second attempts, only for the judges to decide otherwise, the second of which came via a jury decision with the competition paused to view video evidence. He came nowhere near with his final lift, and Salimi's Olympic dream was over.

Salimi argues with judges over his failed lifts (image via: Matthias Hangst/Getty)

Turmanidze came in early, clearing 228, 235 and 241 with his three lifts, giving him a total of 448kg, eventually proving to be enough for bronze after Ruben Aleksanyan failed with two attempts at 254kg. Aleksanyan's Armenian teammate Minasyan claimed silver with his final lift of 241, yet this competition was all about one man. 

Having come close to toppling Salimi in the Snatch, Talakhadze proved he was the best all-rounder, eventually winning by 22kg with successful Clean and Jerk's of 242, 247 and 258 for a combined score of 473kg. That total which was a new world record gave Weightlifting in Rio the perfect ending.