Richmond, VA-- Some of the strongest lifters on the planet converged on Richmond, Va. over the weekend of Jan. 19-20, 2013, to test their abilities at the 2012 AAU World Powerlifting Championships. Directed by Steve and Judy Wood, the meet featured 69 lifters ages 10-74, representing 12 states and Mexico, and they set multiple world and national records during the event. Big Iron Gym came with a record-setting crew from Massachusetts to win the overall team trophy, while the Army National Guard team brought seven lifters from the Washington, D.C. area to win the military team title.
Nineteen world records were broken on day one, as all female and male competitors under 198 lbs. pushed the limits of the platform. Fifty-five-year-old Kasha Winston set women’s raw world records across the board with a 275.5 lb., 187.39 lb. bench press, and 281.08 lb. deadlift, for a total of 744.05 lbs. Ten-year-old Nolan Harrier and his 11-year-old sister Caitlin came from Florida, both setting world records, while at the other end of the age spectrum, 74-year-old Doc Bauer, also from Florida, set a bench press record in the masters 70-74 and law/fire/military 70-74 classes. Twelve-year-old Ally Dodds of Orlando, Fl., continued her record-setting streak in the equipped category, demolishing existing world records in the squat, bench press, deadlift and total. Twenty-seven-year-old Yvonne Young, lifting with the National Guard team, pulled a huge 297.6 lb. deadlift in the 132 lb.-weight class for a world record. Lisa Markland, competing in her first meet despite incomplete quadriplegia, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (a rare genetic condition) and Addison’s disease, managed a 75 lb. bench press and 99 lb. deadlift, even though she had to transfer from her wheelchair to do it! This set an American and world record in the military master’s single-lift bench for her division. The Virginia Special Olympics team brought five competitors, and two of them -- TJ Woolfold and Kavelle Martin -- set world records in their divisions. Fourteen-year-old Evan Pittman set two world records with a 330.6 lb. deadlift while lifting in the 123 lb. class, and has now set AAU world records in six different weight classes.
Eleven additional world records fell on day two, with 19-year-old Matt Sohmer of New York lighting up the platform while setting raw world records in the squat, deadlift and total. Matt crushed a 766 lb. squat and just missed 805 lbs. on depth; later he pulled a 739 lb. deadlift, for an outstanding 1,774.70 lb. total. Sixty-six-year-old Dave Mansfield, who is also an AAU Powerlifting vice chairman and meet director, rewrote the record books with an amazing equipped 555.5 lb. squat, 265 lb. bench, and 535 lb. deadlift for a impressive 1,356 lb. total. Alan Belfield, from Tappahannock, Va. had the heaviest bench press of the day with a 512.5 lb. lift in the 308 lb. class, and master lifter Thomas Arrington from Ramseur, N.C., set 275 lb. class equipped lifetime masters 70-74 records with every lift, finishing with a 402 lb. squat, 275 lb. bench and 402 lb. deadlift, for an event-crushing 1,079 lb. total.
With new AAU Powerlifting directors across the country, strength athletes can expect more AAU powerlifting, weightlifting and Feats of Strength events in 2013!
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