Three Europeans and one young Japanese won gold medals at the Grand Prix of Portugal. IJF

The second day of the Judo Grand Prix of Portugal was more successful for the European judokas, who took three gold medals out of four, while the young Japanese team added a second gold medal to its tally.

Great Britain's Lucy Renshall was unstoppable in the women's 63 kg weight category. She defeated Austria's Katharina Haecker in a close final to take first place. Israel's Inbal Shemesh and Hungary's Szofi Ozbas finished third. 

Double World champion Barbara Matic (70 kg) from Croatia was on the winning track on Saturday. She started the Olympic year with a good win, reaching the final in Portugal and defeating Uzbekistan's Gulnoza Matniyazova. The bronze medals went to Riho Saiganji (Japan) and Miriam Butkereit (Germany). 

An individual neutral athlete (INA), Danil Lavrentev, showed spectacular technique to win the competition in men's 73 kg category. An attacking style saw him win by ippon in the final bout against Spain's Salvador Cases Roca. The bronze medals went to the young Japanese Ryuga Tanaka and to another INA, Makhmadbek Makhmadbekov.

Danil Lavrentev at the 2024 Grand Prix of Portugal. IJF
Danil Lavrentev at the 2024 Grand Prix of Portugal. IJF

Japan's 22-year-old Yoshito Hojo came out of nowhere to defeat world and Olympic champions in the men's 81kg category. 

European bronze medallists Attila Ungvari (Hungary) and Antonio Esposito (Italy), former World champion and Olympic silver medallist Saeid Mollaei (Azerbaijan) and World bronze Joonhwan Lee (Korea) couldn't stop Hojo from reaching the final. 2018 World bronze Vedat Albayrak was the last man to beat Hojo, but the Japanese won by ippon. Mollaei and Lee took bronze medals. 

The competitions of the  last five weight categories will finish on Sunday.