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  • Writer's pictureNorth Shore Barbell

The Auckland Powerlifting Championships Review

Updated: Mar 6, 2021

The Auckland Powerlifting Championships is often the biggest of the six regional events and this year was no different. With over 120 lifters in total competing between Friday July 17 and Sunday, July 19 the event certainly did not disappoint. New rivalries were formed, champions were crowned and it's kicked off a lot of chat about what will happen at nationals in 11 weeks' time.

While we wish we could talk about pretty much every lifter that hit the platform, to keep things short and sweet, we've compiled some of our favourite and most notable moments.


Chris Kennedy totaling 755kg @ 74kg

It's no secret that Chris is an absolute weapon of a lifter and the 2020 Auckland Championships saw him ascend from a good 74kg lifter to a great lifter by way of a 275kg Squat, 180kg Bench and 300 kg Deadlift. A 755kg total ranks Chris 4th in the world all-time for the 74s and has put him to the top of the 2020 NZPF rankings, a smidge ahead of 83kg lifter Tim Monigatti.

Chris walking out his best squat of the competition - 275kg


The battle of the 72s

Internationally, the 72kg woman's class is one of the most competitive classes of the IPF and we got a taste of why it's so great in Auckland over the weekend. With 63kg national champ, Sarah Menzies deciding not to cut and with top 72kg contenders Nicole Smith and Alyssa-Joy Spence competing we got to see a taste of what could've been when the NZ Invitational was cancelled. The competition came down to the last round of deadlifts with Sarah securing victory with a PB 430kg total at 67kg bodyweight.

The 72kg podium - Nicole (Left) Sarah (Middle), Alyssa (Right)


The monstrous 93kg class

We all know the 93kg class is populous, but the Auckland Championships had almost twice as many people compete in the 93s then the next biggest class - 25 in total. As you can imagine, the result was some fierce competition that didn't discriminate between age classes.

Previously a 105kg lifter, Warren Wroth solidified a strong lead from the squats and secured a 750kg total, sending warning shots to Canterbury's Jamie King (Current national Champ). Lee Mcleod, in his first year in the open class, totalled 700kg weighing less than 90kg and in the junior division Dillon Carrol and Eli Abouchaaya duked it out for bragging rights ahead of nationals.

Warren destroying his second squat of 255kg


The age class front-runners

The great thing about Powerlifting, is we have competitors of all ages at every competition. On the younger end of things, Sub-Junior lifter Zoe Perkins raised some eyebrows in her first official competition totalling 360kg in the 63kg class, enough to rank her 4th all-time in the NZPF sub-junior rankings.

Cherry Wilson, who holds numerous age-group records made light work of the APA record standards in the Masters-4 division, totalling 222kg in the 57kg class. On the men's side, Simon Kelsall in his first year as a Masters-2 lifter decided he wanted some more competition so lifted as an Open 93kg lifter. During the competition, he took down every current M2 Auckland record and we're now eyeing up what will be a close competition with Craig McMillan at 2020 nationals.

Cherry Wilson getting ready to lift, accompanied by coach Kevin Strachan


The rise of the 66s

In the NZPF, there has never been a lot of lifters that compete in the 66kg weight class but this year will possibly mark a change. Seemingly out of nowhere, a huge amount of lightweight male lifters appeared and took the platform by storm.

Most notably, Vivian Washington made the cut from 74kgs to 66kgs and took out the weight class with a massive 587.5kg total. Not far behind him, junior lifter Will Hemmington fought off the other 66kg lifters to earn a silver medal and unofficially break some New Zealand junior records.

Suffice to say, this class will be one to tune into at nationals.

Vivian attempts a 205kg squat.


Other notable mentions go to the podium finishers in the 63kg class, Courtney Weir, Amy-Lee Owen and Katie Lin for putting on a show, Sean Winters for driving up to Auckland and securing a 750kg total in the 105s and newcomer Terry Malofau for summoning the might to pull his third deadlift, to stop himself from bombing and earn a ticket to 2020 nationals.


Think we missed something? Let us know:

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