The junior clean and jerk world record holder CJ Cummings competed at the American Junior National Championships last weekend and made some huge lifts! Despite attempting and failing to equal the junior world standard in the snatch at 152 kg on his third attempt, CJ did further his own personal best by another kilo with 149 kg. Since the weight classes changed in 2018 CJ has gone from a 144 kg snatch in the -69 kg class (Sr. American record) to 149 kg in the -73 kg class, a kilo more than he made at the 2018 World Championships last November (148 / 187 / 335 kg).
In the clean and jerk CJ opened with 182 kg before missing 188 kg on his second attempt, an all time PR attempt, but went on to make a best ever 189 kg on his final lift of the competition. This 189 kg successful lift is 2 kg more than his own junior world record! It does not count as an official IWF record however as it was not an official IWF sanctioned event. Sensational lifting from the 18 year old.
What is most impressive about CJ’s performance is that it was considered a ‘training day’ by CJ’s coach Ray Jones. Coach Ray Jones mentioned on Instagram that he ‘kept CJ’s training volume very high, and [CJ] did not taper.’ In fact, we will not see CJ peaked until the Pan American Championships (April 21-28).
So where does this sit with the best Juniors in the world? Well the clean and jerk is the best for his weight of course. But when compared with the old junior world records in the lighter 69 kg class held by the Olympic Champion Liao Hui, CJ is just fractionally behind. As a 69 kg junior lifter Liao managed 190 kg in the clean and jerk. Then again Liao Hui has one of the greatest Sinclairs of any 21st century lifters ever and was banned in 2010 for a failed drugs test. Not a bad athlete to be keeping up with at 18 years of age…
CJ Cummings is the 73 kg junior world record holder in the clean and jerk and the total (187/335 kg) from the 2018 World Championships in Ashgabat. CJ is the youth world record holder in the clean and jerk in the older 69 kg weight class (185 kg) which he set at the 2017 Youth World Championships. CJ broke his first senior American record at the age of fourteen – a 153 kg clean and jerk in the 62 kg class – and has gone on to break and set many more. He is a three-time junior world champion (2016–2018) and a senior Pan American silver medalist (2017).
CJ Cummings trains at Team Beaufort Weightlifting under Team USA Senior International Coach Ray Jones.