At the rate she’s going, she’ll be at the top of the world by 2011.
Defying gravity at the World Weightlifting Championships this past weekend in Seoul, Korea, Yukoner Emily Quarton, 25, lifted her way to an 11th-place finish in the women’s 58-kilogram weight class.
Her result is an improvement of 10 spots, having finished 21st in the same weight class in the 2006.
Quarton topped-out by lifting 81 kilograms in the snatch and 102 kilograms in the clean and jerk, for a total of 183 kilograms.
“I’ve had some health issues this past year so I’ve been a bit off my best,” said Quarton. “For how my training has been, I’m really happy with how the competition went.
“I’ve really cut the amount of training I can do, so that’s affected my performance.
“Basically I got sick every time I tried to push myself in training for the last six months.”
Although pleased with her performance, her total was 13 kilograms off her best, which, had she lifted it, would have moved her up to seventh.
As major an event as the World Championships are, the trip was a bit of a whirlwind experience for Quarton, who arrived Friday and departed Tuesday morning.
“I did one quick training session and tried to get my sleep somewhat under control,” said Quarton. “I had one night where I slept normally and then it was time to come back.”
In fact, Quarton had so little time before leaving she only learned of her final placement by phone during a stopover on the flight home.
“I didn’t until my mom told me when I called her from Japan when I was flying through there,” said Quarton. “I asked her how I did because I never saw the final results.
“I’m happy with that.”
However, ridding herself of jetlag was the least of her problems, having to drop some weight before the competition, said Quarton.
“I had a full two kilos to lose, so I was a bit concerned that that would affect my performance,” she said. “But honestly, I felt really good on the platform, like I felt strong. Sometimes with travelling you really do feel it, but I tried my best to sleep – even if I was awaken, I stayed in bed until a normal time to wake up and I think that really helped me.”
Though she gave an impressive performance on the world stage, on Canadian turf she dominates.
Earlier this year Quarton earned a spot on the Canadian team by winning gold at the 2009 Canadian Weightlifting Championships in May.
In December of 2008, she took gold in the North American Open and won Best Female Lifter, given out to the best overall, not just from each weight class. She also won gold at the Canadian Weightlifting Championships last year, qualifying her to be first-alternate for the Canadian Olympic team.
Surprisingly, her golden performances last year came after she spent most of 2007 recovering from an injury and unable to compete.
“In 2007 I was injured pretty much the full year,” said Quarton. “That whole year was a bit of a writeoff because of my back injury.”
Before the absent 2007 season, Quarton won silver at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia, with a combined lift of 178 kilograms. The same year, she was awarded Best Female Lifter honours at the Quebec Senior Championships in Montreal.
Before making the transition into the adult class, Quarton was also a force to be reckoned with on the junior circuit, winning gold medals for her weight class at the Junior Canadian Weightlifting Championships in both 2001 and 2002.
Quarton is currently studying elementary education at Concordia University in Montreal.
Next she will be lifting in qualifying events for next year’s Commonwealth Games and World Weightlifting Championships in the spring.
Quarton wants to thank all the Yukoners who sent her wishes of good luck leading up to the event.
“I had a lot of messages of support and that was really nice,” said Quarton.
Whitehorse’s Jeane Lassen, who finished eighth in the 75-kilogram weight class at the Beijing Olympics last year, withdrew from the weekend’s World Championships at the last minute because of an injury.
Contact Tom Patrick at