• North Shore Barbell

New Zealand Powerlifting Nationals | 2019 Review & 2020 Preview

Updated: Mar 5

It's hard to believe it's been over a year since the 2019 National Powerlifting Championships. 2019 saw the competition return to Auckland for the first time since 2015 and was once again held at Alexandra Park Racecourse in Greenlane. As with any national-level event, there was a lot of hype going into the competition and some fierce rivalries emerged in the weeks leading up to the competition. 

Here, we're going to highlight our top 5 moments from the competition and break down and after that, what you might see at the 2020 national championships.

The 93kg Mega Session

The 93kg class has always been a popular class to compete in and watch but in recent years, the talent in this class has exploded. Whilst many competitors can only dream of getting their total close to multiple time national champion, Jamie King, the silver medal spot and below was highly contested with some NZPF stalwarts. Going into the competition, Rob Quinlivan and Jordy Kane were both looking good for silver but in the end, Rob's threshold lifts edged out Jordy's signature sandbag style lifting.

An un-official 47kg world record

Megan-Li Smith, coming off a convincing victory at the 2019 World Championships in Helsingborg, Sweden in the Junior 47kg class was looking strong coming into the competition and put on a master-class totaling a whopping 363kg at under 47kg bodyweight - A new New Zealand record and an unofficial junior world record. This feat also earnt Megan-Li the award for best overall junior female at the championships.

Megan-Li about to take her second attempt deadlift at nationals 2019 with ease

The battle of the 72's

If there's one thing more certain than the sun rising in the east and setting in the west, it's that the 72kg class at any competition will contain some epic lifting. Canterbury's Jenny Dewar came face to face with Auckland's Nicole Smith and Alyssa-Joy Spence plus a number of other super strong lifters. Up until deadlifts it was neck and neck between Jenny and Nicole but eventually, Jenny's strong deadlift allowed her to take the lead and secure gold.

Juniors lifting in the open class

Some lifters aren't fussed with personal bests - They just want to be the best. In 2019, three of NZs strongest 105kg juniors threw their hat in the ring with the open lifters, which ultimately created the most competitive class of the 2019 championship. With the 2018 champ and 2019 Masters world champion, Andy Mahon not attending the 2019 championship the door swung open for a new champion. Junior lifter, Maui Koopu managed to take the title, by eclipsing his previous personal best total by 42.5kg's and destroying some junior New Zealand records along the way.

The biggest drug-tested deadlift in New Zealand, ever

For years, Derek Pomana's 365kg deadlift, which happened in 2002 at the Oceania Championships was heralded at unbeatable. That is, until New Zealand's strongest account, Sebastian McLarin came along. From Seb's first competition, it was obvious he was gifted when it came to the deadlift and for the final lift of the 2019 national championships, in order to total 900kg he pulled 380kg, eclipsing his own national record (Since the weight classes were reset) by 29.5kg. Will he be the first New Zealander to pull 900kg?

Seb Mclarin taking 380kg for the final deadlift of nationals 2019. Will he deadlift 400kg+ in 2020?