2015 MPA Provincials
Well, it certainly has been a very busy 1 ½ weeks! Last Friday February 20th the schlepping began. Rob Snow had just finished a nice double at 160kg in the Bench when I showed up and we began toting the weights from the 17 Wing Strength Club to our waiting vehicles. This took the afternoon as two trips were necessary to get all of the competition equipment to Brickhouse Gym on Gertrude. I had already loaded my truck with the chairs and curtains to cordon off the Lifter’s area for the meet. Time was also of the essence as I was due to pick up CPU Secretary, Records Chairman and Webmaster Mike Armstrong whom we brought in as another Referee so anyone wishing to break a Canadian Record had the requisite officials to make it legal.
Paul Taylor and Brickhouse Gym co-owner JT were accommodating in allowing the MPA to move the equipment into the facility the night before the contest. They are a commercial gym and they do run classes and have paying gym members who want to work out too!
Saturday morning came quickly and we were up and out the door shortly after 7:00. Rob Snow was there again to take charge of setting up the platform and meet area. Patrick Cazeau was assisting as well as a host of others as the weigh in proceeded.
Once weigh-ins were completed we were at 28 Competitors for this year’s Provincials. We ran three flights to keep things flowing smoothly. There were some real workhorses doing the spotting and loading at this contest so I would like to personally thank these individuals for volunteering for THE most important job at a Powerlifting contest and that is Spotting and Loading. The hardest working men last Saturday were Patrick Cazeau; Patrick worked his butt off all day and must have sweated out at least 2 litres of water by the end of the day. Jordan Guilford drove all the way in from Brandon (Shilo) to help and was willing to inform lesser Deadlifters about “tongue power” if they needed it. Kurtis Tallaire was doing his version of the Energizer Bunny all day by keeping a high level of energy and positive attitude flowing in spite of some sleep deprivation. Poor Kurtis was unfortunate in that his car had been towed from the Impark Lot beside the gym. He did not let this dampen his mood though as he bailed out his card and got his Nationals entry signed before the day was done. Paul Taylor oversaw the entire event ensuring his gym was represented well and everyone had what they needed, and Devin Laferriere willing stepped in to help out when anyone needed a break. Rob Snow stepped in when needed and I know there were at least two other Brickhouse Gym members who I seem to remember spending some time helping with this very important job. Unfortunately I do not have their names so if Paul can add this information after reading we can thank them properly for the hard work they did.
On the computer was Chris Clement. Chris has helped out on the computer at the head table for several contests and his expertise using Excel Programs has been to our benefit. Krista Vandewaeter and Jannelle Van Den Bosch (The Dutch contingent) aided Chris by handling the lifter’s attempts and score cards. Bob Mann came out of retirement and warmed up his vocal pipes rather than the pipes on his Harley to do the announcing for us the entire day.
Rob Snow filled in where needed throughout the day. He had already worked very hard moving the gear and setting up the venue. Our Vice President Bruce Markham acted as an Expeditor/Technical Controller for the meet to keep things moving along efficiently for the many new lifters who were present.
As mentioned we brought in Mike Armstrong a Category I Referee from Calgary to help officiate. Joining Mike were National Referee and my better half Susan Haywood. I was the other official for the day.
Once the lifting began we started to see some of the excellent young talent that is coming up the ranks here in Manitoba. There were quite a number of first time lifters but there were some experienced competitors as well. What follows is a synopsis of the day.
We only had one Junior Female lifter but darn she is a good one! Hailey Kostynuik lifted at every competition in Manitoba last year and was showing some consistent steady improvement in each of her outings. Hailey spent most of 2014 setting and then breaking her own Provincial Records and today was no different. What was different is that Hailey has started to make some very good progress in her training and appears to be gaining confidence in her abilities. Hailey had the largest jump in all three of her lifts which is quite mind blowing when you add everything up. Hailey improved 30kg on her best Squat finishing with 172.5kg. Added to this was a 7.5kg on her Bench and 20kg on her Deadlift for a total improvement of 57.5kg on her best total!! That was done with a 97.5kg Bench, 185kg Deadlift and a whopping 455kg total. This broke a 14year old Equipped Provincial Standard in the process. Congratulations Hailey on your best meet and performance ever.
With Jannelle helping out at the head table there were two 57kg Open Women competing against each other. Jessa Nguyen and CJ Stewart had a good battle between them and if all three ladies step on the platform together in the future it will be a really good competition. Jessa was better in the squat with a 110 Squat to CJ’s 92.5. However, CJ had a solid bench performance to take the record with a very nice 62.5kg press to Jessa’s 52.5 bench. That left Jessa with a 7.5kg lead going into the deadlift. Here Jessa proved to have the advantage pulling 127.5 to CJ’s 115. So, Jessa extended her lead and finished with a 20kg higher total at 290 to 270kg. This gave Jessa the Provincial Squat and Total records and CJ secured the Bench Record however, Jannelle must have been taking notes as she retained the Deadlift record for the time being. So, you can understand my anticipation to see these three throw down at the same time.
Caitlyn Clement was alone in the Women’s 63kg weight class. Caitlyn had an excellent day going 8/9 missing only her third Benchpress to set all of the Female Military 63kg Manitoba Records. This was done with bests of 82.5, 47.5, and 110kg for a 240 total! Caitlyn is a fierce competitor and was determined to reach her goals on this day.
Terri Fordham returned to the platform for the first time since last year. Terri had a very good day as she improved on all of her Provincial records in the Women’s M1 84+ category with the exception of the Benchpress. Terri took two tries at 80.5kg for the National Record but was unsuccessful due to some shoulder problems. This was too bad as Terri’s Provincial Record exceeds the National record by 2kg. However, the necessary officials were present here and all of the conditions were there to establish a new record. It was not meant to be as Terri went 7/9 with 112.5, 70, and 130 for a total of 312.5kg.
There were two 84+ Open Women going head to head last Saturday, Alyssa Amanda Sankar and Samantha McFarlane. Unfortunately, we did not see Samantha’s full potential as she injured herself on the second squat where she was successful with 132.5kg; this affected her third squat of 142.5 as she could not come up with it. Alyssa was successful with her first squat of 107.5 but could not get another squat passed. Alyssa made up some ground on the bench going 3/3 and finishing with 57.5 to Samantha’s first attempt of 65. The injury played a factor here as Samantha could not bench her remaining attempts and therefore opened up cautiously with her Deadlift at 60kg. She did have a 35kg lead at the sub but that was wiped out with Alyssa’s opener of 130! Alyssa kept pulling her second and thirds for the win with a 307.5 to Sam’s 300kg total. It appears that Sam and her coaches tried to push things a little out of reach with a third attempt of 120kg which was too much with an injury. Perhaps a lighter attempt would have been enough but Alyssa had the last pull and would have only needed to pull to match as she was the lighter lifter. Well done Alyssa for the win and the title of Provincial Champion.
The Men’s Junior 83kg weight class had a nice tight competition and an internal “Battle of the Brothers” going on as well. Just to provide some prospective all of the existing records for this class were broken on Saturday and three of the four competitors exceeded the previous total record!! Now that is some good, good liftun! Squats were very tight with only one attempt being missed out of the twelve tries in this class. Nicholas Thrones came out on top with at 197.5 Squat, followed by Henry de Guzman at 195, Mikal Thrones at 190 (but he went for it with a try at 200!) and Brandon Espiritu went 3/3 finishing with 155kg. The Benchpress saw some failed attempts. Henry was the better bencher with a solid 127.5 second Bench. Mikal was next with an opener of 115 for his only successful bench. Big Brother Nicholas needed two tries to be successful with his third at 112.5. Brandon went 2/3 finishing with 97.5kg. So at the sub-total Henry had a good lead at 322.5 with Nicholas and Mikal following with 310 and 305 respectively. Brandon was having a good first meet with a 252.5 sub. The Deadlift has a way of settling all of the questions and it played out again for this class. Consistency will certainly help with your lifting and both Brandon and Nicholas went 3/3 in the deads. Brandon had a best pull of 165 for a total of 417.5kg. This was a great first performance as he was 8/9 on attempts. Henry was doing his best to keep the lead with two good pulls and a best at 220kg. This gave Henry a 542.5 total but he was going for the win as his 230 attempt would have won the class if successful. Mikal Thrones was able to get his opener at 227.5. Now this was the highest opener but as I am wont to do with new lifters I would have said, “It’s not where you start but where you finish that matters”. So Mikal jumped to 242.5 on his second which was unsuccessful and tried 245 on his third for the win but could not lock it out! Mikal would need to settle for Bronze with a 532.5 total. As I said earlier, consistency pays off and Nicholas had altered his deadlift form to try a modified sumo pull at this contest. He was able to finish with 237.5 which gave him the win with a 547.5 total! This was a great weight class battle and I’m sure all four competitors will improve at their next outing. But, for now, Nicholas has the family bragging rights with the Gold!
There were three Junior 93kg lifters going for gold but the competition was not as close as the 83kg class. Taylor Abolade gave up his spotting and loading duties to compete and he did very well with a 6/9 day improving as he moved through the contest with one good squat, two good benches and all three deadlifts for a nice total of 587.5 via 202.5 Squat, 125 bench and a 260kg deadlift that left Taylor scratching his head as the referees’ lights were slow to show the three whites that he earned (they were still showing red when turned on from the last lifter). Christina Eisma was in the Silver medal position with 160, 102.5 and 180 totalling 442.5kg. Ace Gervacio had some squatting trouble but managed 110, 87.5 bench and 190 for a total of 387.5 for the Bronze.
Carey Link was unchallenged in the Junior 105 class. Carey had a very good day going 8/9 missing only his third squat and breaking his own Provincial Bench record and totalling 597.5kg.
There was a single competitor at the Junior 120kg class as well. Chris Godin went 6/9 having some challenges in the bench just getting his opener at 135 but pulling all three deads finishing with 250kg deadlift and a 610 total at his first contest. Nice job Chris!
We had another Junior 120kg lifter but he was lifting with Equipment and it too was his first competition. Mohamed Jasim had some difficulty hitting depth on his squats but some more weight on his third attempt was enough to get him low enough to break parallel and to stay relevant in the competition. There were more troubles in the Bench as Mohamed was successful on his first but missed the next two. The nerves must have settled down by deadlifts as Mohamed was able to go 3/3 and pull 237.5 for a 565 total!
There were two Masters 1 competitors and they proved that “age & treachery shall overcome youth and enthusiasm”. Vince Green was back for his second contest at the 105 M1 Men’s class. Trevor Winfield was lookin large and in charge in the 120+ M1 Men’s class.
Vince had a solid day breaking three of his Provincial records in the process. Vince was 7/9 missing a 235 squat for the record but benching 162.5 and pulling 235 for a 617.5 total for a new record. I’m sure we may see Vince compete in his home town of Portage la Prairie in June to try and extend his numbers.
Trevor proved that he is again one of the strongest Masters lifters in the country. Trevor had a 260kg squat a Canadian Record Bench of 227.5kg (501lbs!) and his first ever 272.5kg (600 ¾ lbs) for a new Provincial Record total of 760kg!! A very solid performance from one of our best and least recognized lifters in this province.
The Open Men’s classes provided some solid lifting too. Mac Cuevas was alone in the 66kg class. He lifted 6 of his 9 lifts 145 squat, 87.5 bench, and 182.5kg deadlift for a total of 415kg for the Gold.
Nhan Nguyen lifted for the second time here in Manitoba but for the first time as a Manitoba resident. Nhan is a very strong technical lifter and he was able to break three out of the four 74kg Open Men’s Provincial records. Nhan had some depth issues with his opening squat but sorted that out to finish with 212.5kg. In the Bench Nhan was good for 127.5kg and a second deadlift of 237.5 was good for a 577.5 total and the Gold! Nhan and his wife Jessa certainly brought home the gold on the 21st.
The Men’s 93kg weight class had four competitors who were vying for supremacy. None could hold a candle to Dan Lamoureaux though! Dan had a stellar day of lifting by missing only his third attempt on the squat at 260kg. He squatted 250, 180, and a huge increase to his deadlift of 287.5kg for a 717.5kg total which was good enough for the Gold and the Best Lifter of the Meet!! This too was 100kg more than the Silver medallist’s total!
The Silver Medallist was first time competitor Oladele Akano. Oladele was 7/9 in his first outing missing a squat and his third bench but pulling a nice 260kg Deadlift for a 617.5 total! In third and the Bronze was Mathew Bowen. Mathew had dropped a weight class and was putting together a good meet. Mathew only missed his final deadlift putting together a nice squat of 200kg a 130 bench and a 227.5 deadlift for a 557.5 total and third place. Jarrett Beck obviously had a plan and stuck to it as he had a perfect day of lifting going 9/9. Jarrett’s form was very precise and he executed his lifts with good technique for a newcomer. Jarrett went 182.5. 115 and 217.5 for a 515 total!
Sam Martz lifted alone in the Open 105 class. Sam calmly tossed his golden locks to the side as he squatted 212.5, benched 162.5 (missing it on the second and recovering nicely for a second successful try on his third), and a 240kg deadlift totalling up 615kg.
There were two 120kg men duelling it out. Patrick May and David Kham lifted for glory. Patrick squatted 217.5 to David’s 165. Benchpress had similar results with Patrick pressing 152.5 to David’s 112.5. This gave Patrick a very comfortable cushion of 92.5kg at the sub to the first timer David. Both men pulled well not missing an attempt with David finishing with a 210 pull for a 487.5kg total. Patrick pulled 257.5 for a nice 627.5 total and the Gold.
First time lifter Dakota O’Blenis was also alone in the 120+ class. Dakota squatted well managing a respectable 232.5kg for his first contest. There were some difficulties in the Bench and Deadlift as Dakota only managed one legal lift in each, finishing with a 570 total.
So that wraps up the lifting! This was a very successful meet with excellent performances from the lifters. As well, there was a significant amount and welcome help at the venue for the set up and tear down. Everyone helped stack the MPA and rental equipment up at the end of the gym and drifted off into the evening to celebrate as Meet Director and Brickhouse Gym Owner Paul Taylor got is pump on with some Chest supported rows.
Over the next few days I moved the gear back to the 17 Wing with assistance from Bruce Markham, Rob Snow and Tyler Kolesar. I appreciate the camaraderie and assistance while doing these tasks that are necessary for a successful Meet. Many thanks to Paul Taylor and his gym members from the Brickhouse Gym who helped make this meet a success. Thank you to all of the volunteers again for your time and effort.
We have some lifters training for the CPU Nationals in St John’s Newfoundland in April. If you know them personally may I suggest helping them in the gym so they can have a successful training cycle which will allow them to represent Manitoba to the best of their abilities come the second week of April. Good bye for now, I’ll see you on the wood in June.
IPF Category I Referee