Christine Girard of Elliott Lake, Ontario was officially presented with her two Olympic medals at a ceremony at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Ontario on Monday. Girard was awarded the bronze medal in women’s 63 kilogram weightlifting from the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and had her bronze medal in the women’s 63 kilogram weightlifting event from the 2012 Olympic Games in London was officially upgraded from bronze to gold.
Girard had her position upgraded from fourth to third at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing because Olympic silver medalist Irina Nekrassova of Kazakhstan was disqualified for failing a drug test upon reanalysis. Girard is now one of two Canadian Olympic gold medalists from the 2012 Olympic Games in London (the other is Rosannagh MacLennan of King City, Ontario in the women’s trampoline), after Maiya Maneza of Kazakhstan and Svetlana Tsarukayeva of Russia were stripped of their gold and silver medals respectively,
At the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, Girard lifted a total of 228 kilograms (102 kilograms in the snatch and 126 kilograms in the clean and jerk) to beat Nguyen Thi Thiet of Vietnam by three kilograms for a podium spot. Thiet had lifted 225 kilograms. Hyon-suk Pak of North Korea won the gold medal with a total lift of 241 kilograms and Ying-chi Lu of Chinese Taipei won the silver medal with a total lift of 231 kilograms. Pak became the second North Korean woman ever to win an Olympic gold medal. The first was Kye Sun-Hui, who won a gold medal in the women’s 48 kilogram judo division at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.
Canada’s medal count at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing is now at 20 medals (three gold, nine silver and eight bronze medals). With the medal, Canada improved to 13th in the overall medal standings and passed Spain, which has 19 medals.