By Al Myers
2017 USAWA GRIP CHAMPIONSHIPS
The USAWA Grip Championships last weekend at the Dino Gym was a huge success! A total of 17 lifters (5 women and 12 men) turned up to make this one of the biggest attended USAWA competitions in the past year. There was lots of great lifting – so much I will not be able to cover it all here.
The Womens Division was packed with 5 great lifters. RJ made the trip from Colorado, Mary Mac, Tressa and newcomer Saria came from Omaha, along with last years defending best lifter champion Emily Burchett. The Mens Division had a house full of seasoned grippers – defending champ LaVerne Myers, 2012 World Champ Dan Wagman, grip sensation Ben Edwards, and Chad Ullom. I knew that this years titles were up for grabs.
The Pinch Grip was the first lift of the day. Most of the lifters had no idea what their max was in this lift, so as you can tell from the results listed below, alot of the lifters did a 4th attempt for record. The best lifts were by Dan Wagman, Chad Ullom, and Jason Payne, who all finished with a superb lift of 226 pounds.
The second lift was the Fulton DB one arm deadlift. The Fulton DB has a handle with diameter of 2″ so this makes the gripping a real challenge. Mary Mac had the top womens mark with 95 pounds, while Chad had the top men’s mark with 195 pounds! This new record by Chad is the best overall record lift ever in this lift by either hand, and matches the historic record set many years ago by Kevin Fulton. I was very impressed. LaVerne Myers had the second best lift with 185 pounds.
The third lift was the Middle Fingers Deadlift. Again, Mary had the top womens lift here with 195 pounds. Very, very impressive. Mary has always been great at this lift (she holds the top womens lift in the record list at 230 pounds), and on this day showed she still has it! The top mens lift went to Chad with a lift of 285 pounds. Both Dan and Ben had been training hard for this lift in training and had suffered finger injuries that prevented them from taking all out maxes in the meet. However, after Ben’s conservative 225# opener he made a big jump to 320# to try for a new PR. He had the weight locked out but just a millisecond before he was to get the down command the bar popped out of his fingers, taking a chunk of flesh with it! O so close!
The meet finished with the Fulton Bar Hack Lift. Two women made a 200 pound lift (Emily and Saria) and four men were over 300 pounds (Chad 450, Zach and Ben 325, and Dan 305). Chad really stole the show here with his huge 450. Plus I should mention that up through 3 events LaVerne was in the lead in total points, but after Chad’s and Dan’s big hacks he got passed by them and dropped to third overall. Ben provided a little humor in this event as he lifted his opener facing backwards! The funniest part of it all was that he didn’t do it on purpose and was a little embarrassed afterwards.
In the end RJ won overall best lifter in the Women’s Division over the best class of women’s lifters EVER in the Grip Championships. RJ was very prepared for this meet and picked her attempts perfectly. She is now a 3X winner of the Overall Best Womens Lifter at the Grip Championships. Saria shows alot of potential in the All Rounds. In the mens division we had a newcomer to the USAWA – John Douglas. I always like to see new lifters involved in our organization, especially great guys like John. John ended up getting BEST LIFTER in the 50-54 age group in a hotly tested and competitive age group with Lance and Jason being part of. I was tremendously impressed with the two Junior Men lifters – Christian and Calvin. Both these guys showed grit all day and it came down to a very close finish for best Mens Junior lifter with Christian edging Calvin 799 points to 793 points. I also want to mention Jason Payne. Jason has lifted in meets at the Dino Gym before, but its been a few years. Jason has a huge grip (he still holds the Dino Gym record with the hub lift) and if it wasn’t for the Hack Lift which gave him problems he would have placed much higher overall. Got to mention our USAWA Prez Denny Habecker. Denny just had surgury on a finger a couple of months ago but STILL lifted in the meet and did quite well. That takes courage (or stupidity! haha). The “effort award” has to go to Dan with his Fulton Bar Hack Lift. Dan has plenty of strength in the Hack but had problems getting the bar past his hammys, and had to go to his third attempt to get it! He never gives up.
I want to thank everyone for attending this meet, and lets make it another epic Grip Championships next year!
2017 Grip Championships
February 11th, 2017
Meet Director: Al Myers
Scorekeeper & Announcer: Al Myers
Official (1 official system used): Al Myers
Lifts: Pinch Grip, Deadlift – Fulton Dumbbell, One Arm, Deadlift – Middle Fingers, Hack Lift – Fulton Bar
|RJ Jackson||55||106||156 (161)||80R||155||190||581||936.7|
|Emily Burchett||25||149||166 (201)||90R||160 (175)||180 (200)||596||638.0|
|Tressa Brooner||55||128||97 (107)||75R (80R)||115 (120)||130 (140)||417||576.5|
|Saria De La Vega||17||163||107 (112)||75R||150||185 (200)||517||547.5|
|Mary McConnaughey||57||304||161 (171)||95R||195||—-||451||383.9|
|Chad Ullom||45||246||226||180R (195R)||285||450||1141||967.6|
|Christian Schimpf||18||154||171 (201)||120R||200||250||741||799.1|
|Calvin Heit||15||141||151 (166)||100R||135||235(245)||621||793.6|
|Denny Habecker||74||196||161 (176)||105R||150||110||526||641.4|
|Dean Ross||74||246||107 (112)||115L||160||150||532||574.6|
|Jason Payne||51||333||205 (226)||150R||225||110||690||534.4|
NOTES: Age is listed in years. BWT is bodyweight in pounds. All lifts recorded in pounds. R and L designate right and left hands. TOT is total pounds lifts. PTS are overall points adjusted for age and bodyweight. Extra lifts for records are recorded with parenthesis.
BEST LIFTER AWARDS
RJ Jackson – Best Women’s Master and Overall Best Lifter
Emily Burchett – Best Women’s Senior
Saria De La Vega – Best Women’s Junior
Chad Ullom – Best Men’s Master 45-49 and Overall Best Lifter
Dan Wagman – Best Mens Open
LaVerne Myers – Best Mens Master 70-74
Christian Schimpf – Best Mens Junior
Ben Edwards – Best Men’s 40-44
John Douglas – Best Men’s 50-54
RECORD DAY LIFTS
RJ Jackson – 55 years old, 106 lbs.
Deadlift – Inch DB, Right: 61 lbs.
Deadlift – Inch DB, Left: 58.5 lbs.
Finger Lift – Little, Right: 36.5 lbs.
Saxon Snatch: 35 lbs.
Teeth Lift: 54 lbs.
Dan Wagman – Open age group, 184 lbs.
Curl – Cheat, 2 Dumbbells: 190 lbs.
Saxon Snatch: 110 lbs.
Deadlift – No Thumb, Left Arm: 187 lbs.
Deadlift – No Thumb, Right Arm: 187 lbs.
Vertical Bar Lift – 1″, 1 Bar, Right Hand: 261 lbs.
Denny Habecker – 74 years old, 197 lbs.
Lateral Raise – Standing: 50 lbs.
Vertical Bar Lift – 1″, 1 Bar, Left Hand: 91 lbs.
Vertical Bar Lift – 1″, 1 Bar, Right Hand: 106 lbs.
Vertical Bar Lift – 1″, 2 Bars: 182 lbs.
Press – Behind Neck, From Racks: 110 lbs.
Calvin Heit – 15 years old, 142 lbs.
Deadlift – Heels Together: 220 lbs.
Curl – Cheat, Dumbbell, Right Arm: 60 lbs.
Curl – Cheat, Dumbbell, Left Arm: 65 lbs.
Chad Ullom – 45 years old, 246 lbs.
Squat – Front: 396 lbs.
Deadlift – Ciavattone Grip: 440 lbs.
Curl – Cheat, Dumbbell, Right Arm: 115 lbs.
Dean Ross – 74 years old, 244 lbs.
Vertical Bar Deadlift – 1″, 1 Bar, Left Hand: 106 lbs.
Vertical Bar Deadlift – 1″, 1 Bar, Right Hand: 106 lbs.
Vertical Bar Deadlift – 1″, 2 Bars: 212 lbs.
LaVerne Myers – 72 years old, 241 lbs.
Deadlift – Fulton DB, Left Arm: 180 lbs.
Deadlift – Fulton Bar, Left Arm: 170 lbs.
Deadlift – 3″ Bar: 235 lbs.
Vertical Bar Lift – 2″, 1 Bar, Left Hand: 165 lbs.
Bench Press – Fulton Bar: 125 lbs.
Al Myers – 50 years old, 227 lbs.
Bench Press – Roman Chair: 180 lbs.
Deadlift – Fulton Bar, Right Arm: 180 lbs.
Deadlift – Fulton DB, Right Arm: 180 lbs.
Back Extension: 180 lbs.
Curl – Cheat, Reverse Grip: 180 lbs.