D'Angelo Osorio Interview

On this week's Weightlifting House Interviews we have the reigning USA 105 national champion D'Angelo Osorio!  I spoke to D'Angelo before and after he won the senior national title about his training during the build up to his win, the  improvement in USA weightlifting, and also his feelings after winning his first senior national title. 

D’Angelo began weightlifting at a young age, competing in his first School Age Championships in 2008 where he earned a silver medal as a 77kg lifter. Over the last 9 years D’angelo has improved year by year, winning medals at Junior Nationals, Senior Nationals, a gold at the American open, and even a gold medal in the snatch at the Junior Pan Ams. D’Angelo has competed on several international teams, and up until recently held the Junior American Records for the clean and jerk and total in the 94kg class at 195kg and 350kg respectively.

Now a 105, D’Angelo has set his mark as the number one 105 in the country heading into the new quad. After years of competing, D’angelo is now the 2017 Senior National Champion, a title of which he is incredibly deserving. 

Over the last year D'Angelo has become one of the most exciting athletes to watch in USAW. He even posted the second biggest total of any 105 from the last quad with a total of 375kg (165/210) at only 100kg body weight, an total that undeservedly flew under the radar somewhat. D'Angelo has managed to improve over this last year, with his most notable lift being a 215kg clean and jerk in April of this year, the largest clean and jerk of any American 105 in competition since American record holder Wes Barnett. The rate with which D’Angelo is improving is a testament to his coaching and his mental fortitude. With 3 more years of this quad left, it is difficult to predict the numbers he will hit in the run up to Tokyo.

Having trained at many different facilities, including California Strength, Podium Gold, and the OTC, most of D'Angelo's training comes from Hassle Free BBC. 

The American 105 class has suddenly become the group to watch, as many lifters from the 94 class are out either through injury or time off, and several big name 105s have returned. It has become clear that D'Angelo is now the leader of that pack, with many talented athletes after his no.1 spot.

With his sights set on Tokyo 2020, D'Angelo moves forwards to Pan Ams as the top 105 in the country. His total of 376kg is 2kg above the number two rank, Wes Kitts.

elow is the interview I had with D'Angelo a week before and a few days after this year's Nationals where he took home the golden crown.

 

It’s great to have you do this! Firstly I want to ask a bit about your recent 215kg clean and jerk. I believe this is the biggest clean and jerk of any American 105 since Wes Barnett. Did you plan on hitting this lift a while before or did you just turn up, feel good and go for it?

Yes I believe this is the heaviest clean and jerk since Wes Barnett. I honestly didn't plan on doing it, the plan was to go to 210-212 on the third attempt. The warm ups were somewhat ok and I had my doubts but it's a whole different game once I set foot on the platform and once the first attempt was made it was game time.


 
What can you attribute your sudden spurt of PRs to? Last year you hit 165 210 which was a big improvement, specifically on the clean and jerk, and since then  you have been hitting 200+ regularly. Was this a shift in how you train?

The change of my programming has had a positive effect on me due to having more recovery time and being able to work on my weaknesses on my off days.


 
A lot of people are really interested in the squat training of top weightlifters. People tend to be the ‘squat every day’ kind of lifter or the ‘squat twice a week lifter’. Your squats, both front and back have flown up recently. What does your squat program look like these day?

Honestly it depends on how I'm feeling. My coach prefers me to squat 3 days a week which is perfectly spread out. My squats will alternate every week so we're able to balance them both really well.

 

Can we expect to see more training from you and Ian? Whenever you two are together in The Barn we see magical things happen! Some of the Youtube videos from you both from back in the day are great.

Hopefully we can train a lot more often like the old days. My schedule is a little cluttered so I can visit every now and then as of right now. But we both want to train together because we push each other to our limits, personally I can't find that anywhere else.

 

Who do you consider to be the best weightlifter ever and why? If you could train with any lifter, dead or alive, who would it be?

I'd consider Kim Min Jae -94kg of ?? to be an amazing lifter. His technique is very crisp in both movements and he's a very positive/fun athlete to be around I think. 

 

One of the biggest controversies at the moment in weightlifting is the subject of Louie Simmons and Westside barbell. Do you think Westside programming can be adopted for weightlifting successfully or is it too far removed?

I've never heard of Louie Simmons honestly so I couldn't give an honest answer.


 
You’ve trained at a lot of awesome gyms with a lot of top lifters. Who have been some of your favourite people to train with and why?

My favorite lifters to train with were at the Olympic Training Center. The main athletes that were fun to train with were Norik Vardanian, Alex Lee and Anthony Pomponio. They've all taught me that lifting can be more fun than serious.


 
What are your thoughts on the current retrospective drug testings? When big names like Ilya go down do you see this a crushing blow for weightlifting, or a good thing because it gives clean lifters more of a chance?

It's a great thing because they're finally cracking down on the lifters that dope and giving other lifters all over a fighting chance to prove that you don't need drugs to be great.


 
Weightlifting is blowing up in the USA right now and there are several lifter, yourself included who are lifting heavier and heavier weights. What numbers do you expect you will have to hit this quad as a 105 to get yourself on the Olympic team?

U.S. lifters are definitely making great improvements such as CJ Cummings and Harrison Maurus. Very young and talented, they're putting the U.S. back out there and bringing home some hardware. As for numbers for Tokyo they would have to be a little higher than 170+/220+ that's my guess.


 
What are your goals in weightlifting? What numbers do you believe you are capable of? Do you think that you and Wes Kitts will push yourselves above and beyond Wes Barnett’s record at 220?

My goals in weightlifting are to make the 2020 Olympics but to also be the best athlete I can be and give it my all. Definitely yes and I'm excited for the both of us to push ourselves to the limit!


Finally, coffee… Hot or cold?

Definitely COLD?


After the the 2017 Nationals I caught up very briefly with D'Angelo again to find out his feelings on his 1st Senior National Championships win.


Congratulations on your win! It was a fantastic show you put on. What was the atmosphere like in the back room between yourself, Ian, and Ethan? I saw you even coming out to watch Ian attempt the 167kg snatch. As such good friends are you hoping for him to miss at that point or make it?

Thank you! The atmosphere in the back room was very good with myself and Ian. No not at all, I came out to support him as usual. I always want the best for my teammates. The session went as planned and warm ups felt very routine with no misses at all.


 
How does this win rank in your weightlifting moments?

This win means a lot to me. I've always wanted to be a national champion and the time finally came!