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Micronesian Weightlifter Going to Beijing Olympics



Manuel Minginfel

Excerpted from Kaselehlie Press (July 18, 2008) – On Friday, July 18, Chinese Ambassador to the Federated States of Micronesia, Liu Fei, held an information briefing at her residence to inform the FSM on preparations for the Olympic Games which will be held in Beijing from August 8 – 24.  She said that all of the 37 stadiums and 45 independent training venues are ready.  Half a million volunteers will serve in Beijing and at other Olympic venues. More than 5000 translators and interpreters with the capability to translate 53 languages are on standby for the games to ensure nothing gets lost in translation. The official languages of the games will be French and English.

Among the 5 athletes who will be representing the Federated States of Micronesia in Beijing is Yapese weightlifter Manuel Minginfel, the only one to qualify for the Olympics based on his competitive accomplishments.  On October 1, 2006, Minginfel won a silver medal at the 2006 IWF World Weightlifting Championships in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic against 41 competitors in his division, from over 30 different countries, lifting 61.8kg (136 lbs) in the clean and jerk competition.  In September 2007, he also set a new South Pacific Games record snatch in the men's 56 kilo category - the first for his home islands of Micronesia. The record was then rated as top 6th in the world.   More

FSM National Olympic Committee Chairman, Jim Tobin, stated that no FSM athlete had ever made it to the finals and predicted that Minginfel might make the top ten.