This Tuesday, 16th January, has brought one of the most anticipated moments for Spanish weightlifting and, above all, for Lydia Valentín.
Marisol Casado, member of the International Olympic Committee, has presented Lydia with the silver medal from the 2008 Olympics in Beijing at the Spanish Olympic Committee headquarters.
In addition, the Vice President of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), José Quiñones, has handed her the pin that credits Lydia’s historic deed.
Alejandro Blanco, President of the Spanish Olympic Committee; the Minister of Education, Culture and Sports, Íñigo Méndez de Vigo; the Secretary of State for Sport, José Ramón Lete; the other Spanish member of the IOC, José Perurena; and the president of The Spanish Weightlifting Federation, Constantino Iglesias, were present during the moving even in recognition of the entire Olympic Movement.
Lydia’s medal has arrived late, but it has nonetheless arrived, as Alejandro Blanco remarked during his speech, in which he also wanted to highlight the values of the sport represented by Lydia Valentín in her constant fight for fair play and clean sport.
Lydia only had words of gratitude to all the people who were present and, above all, she has appreciated the support from her family, training partners, medical team and friends.
An emotional moment came for Lydia when several Spanish sports stars, including Saul Craviotto, Maialen Chourraut, Marcus Walz and Ruth Beitia, congratulated her for the medal via a video that was played at the ceremony.
Valentín’s teammates, who are concentrated in the High-Performance Center of Madrid, didn’t want to miss this special moment. Neither did the people that discovered her: Isaac Álvarez; Manuel Galván, National Coach and Lydia’s coach during the Olympic cycle of Beijing; and Matías Fernández, current National Coach and Lydia’s coach from 2008 onwards.
This is the first of two medals that Lydia can now hang around her neck with pride.
Photo credit: Isaac Morillas / FEH