World Powerlifting’s 2019 World Championships weathered the storm of visa rejections blocking out nearly half the field to come through with a quality meet in the upscale venue of Calgary’s Winsport Olympic Centre. Australia took out the team title over home nation Canada and provided the two Best Lifters, Elizabeth Craven and Tony Reinmuth.
In the Women’s classes Liz struggled through three hard Squats, came to life with a Master’s Record Bench of 87kg and then rolled the dice with a jump from 170 to 187kg Deadlift to try and sneak a WR Total. A snake eyes result still left Liz with 411kg and the Best Women’s Lifter Trophy.
On to the 58s and Canadian Junior Marthe Henry edged Australian Janelle Schulz in the first of likely many more title wins. At 64kg Tara Gripton of Australia had only to cruise to 433kg to handle the field.
Not that far behind Liz on points, up at 72kg, was the fast improving Karlina Tongotea of New Zealand, who surprised favourite Barbra Auva’a, 488kg to 484kg. The NZ women were a force across all the heavier classes, with Jewel Tasi and Riria Ropata taking out the 84s and 100+kgs respectively.
On to the Men’s classes and Lenard James (USA) made short work of Australians Ross Rickards and Joshua Luu at 69kg. Down the list but putting in a special performance in that class was 89 year old Joe Stockinger with 175kg Deadlift and 360kg Total finally getting him in the World Record books seven decades after starting out.
Then followed three decisive wins, Christophe Ang at 77kg, Victor Akpawan at 85kg and Zac Reimer at 94kg. Victor,especially, is a comer for 2020 and beyond and will fill out to 94kg and much bigger Totals. At 105kg Morgan Domney was flat and looked vulnerable at Deadlift time, but the two Canadian contenders pulled up 2 & 3kg short and Morgan bestrode the victory dais.
Finally, Australian Superheavyweight Tony Reinmuth stole the show with 967kg and 527 points at a trim 166kg bodyweight. 400kg Squat was a sensation and backed up with 242kg Bench and 325kg Deadlift for a PB by 30kg and a clear Best Lifter award.