Four Northland weightlifters have claimed gold and broken records in their age and weight categories at the National Masters Championships in Wellington this weekend.

Ness Lawgun, Paula Martin, James Ong and Paul Davis attended the competition held at the Upper Hutt Weightlifting Club along with over 100 other lifters.

For the women, Lawgun won gold in the 45-49 years old, under 55 kilogram category and recorded a 44kg snatch beating the required 40kg to set a new NZ record. She set two other records for a 55kg clean and jerk, beating the required 50kg and a total lift of 99kg beating the required 91kg.

Ness Lawgun concentrates ahead of one of her record-breaking lifts. Photo / Tash Baxendale
Ness Lawgun concentrates ahead of one of her record-breaking lifts. Photo / Tash Baxendale

Lawgun also placed fifth in the overall Sinclair ranking for all female lifters which incorporated age and weight to rank all female and male competitors at the event.

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Martin, who was competing in her first masters competition, earned gold in the 45-49 years old, under 87kg category with a 67kg record clean and jerk beating the 64kg standard.

For the men, Ong took home gold in the 30-35 years old, under 77kg category while Davis won gold in the 40-44 years old, under 105kg category.

Davis broke six records in the process including a snatch of 110kg beating the required 100kg, a clean and jerk of 125kg beating 120kg and a total lift of 235kg beating 222kg.

Paul Davis on his way to breaking six national records. Photo / Tash Baxendale
Paul Davis on his way to breaking six national records. Photo / Tash Baxendale

Davis was the third-ranked male lifter overall based on the Sinclair ranks.

The lifters were competing in new weight classes which enabled them to set new records against the standards set for the classes, but Lawgun said she was very happy to see Northlanders do so well.

"It's always hard to know what to expect. It's one of the best results for Northland, especially getting four golds. It definitely was for Paula. It's a massive achievement in her first masters especially because she had tough competition."

A good showing from Northland's lifters was to be expected at this tournament as Lawgun and Davis both won gold for weightlifting at the Pan Pacific and Oceania Weightlifting championships in May.

Lawgun said since she and her husband had started a crossfit club in Northland, popularity in weightlifting had increased markedly.

"Weightlifting had a real strong presence here back in the 70s and 80s but then it just fell away in Northland until we started the club in 2012."

Lawgun said weightlifting as a sport was gaining traction across the globe thanks to crossfit, particularly with women.

"Females are coming up through numbers-wise overtaking the males. Crossfit has bred life back into Olympic weightlifting all around the world but especially in New Zealand.

"Lots of females find it through crossfit and realise they quite like it and maybe they like it better than crossfit."