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Valley weightlifter to make Olympic debut on Sunday

United States weightlifter Sarah Robles trains at the Athletes' Village in the Olympic Park during the 2012 Summer Olympics, London, Friday, Aug. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

An East Valley woman, who is rated America's top weightlifter, will make her Olympic debut on Sunday in London.

Craig Rintoul, who has trained with Sarah Robles for almost five years, said he had a feeling when he first saw her lift that he would be watching her in the Olympics one day.

"If all the stars align, and Sarah had the perfect day, she could be right in there for medal contention," he said. "Gold medals? I don't know. She's looking at the top five, maybe the bronze, because you never know what's going to happen with the people above you. They can miss, they can bomb out, the can get hurt."

Rintoul said Robles' main job is to focus on her lifts, not the other competitors.

According to Rintoul, Robles was living on a $400 per month stipend from USA Weightlifting and needed donations to get to London.

"A lot of her money goes to living expenses," he said. "She doesn't have money to do things."

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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