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I traveled to Spokane, WA this past weekend to compete in the GNC Empire Classic Pro Deadlift. This is the 4th straight year that the Pro Deadlift Event has been included in the NPC Empire Classic Bodybuilding Show. Ivan and Erin Ribic are seasoned meet promoters that have made the Empire Classic a great show. Both have extensive backgrounds in powerlifting with Erin being a multiple time USAPL National Champion and IPF World Medalist. In 2011 Erin made a move to incorporate a Pro Deadlift Event, into the intermission of the Bodybuilding Finals, on Saturday Night. As a competitor I can say the crowd is phenomenal and one of the loudest I have ever witnessed during my 25 years in the sport.
Due to time constrictions the event is restricted to 5 competitors, but this year’s contest, similar to previous years, was contested by some of the top deadlifters in the World. Due to a couple last minute drop outs, IPF Hall of Famer Priscilla Ribic decided to join in on the fun. She currently holds the IPF World Record in the deadlift. She made a huge 501 pull look easy. She was good for much more, but decided to save her energy for next weekend’s Women's Nationals. Good Luck Priscilla! Sean Culnan, 2007 IPF Masters World Champion smoked 750 and took a great attempt at 777. Jesse Norris, stepped up on short notice and put on a show pulling a 755 RAW deadlift at 200 lbs. Jesse is only 20 years old. On his third attempt he tried an unofficial IPF World Record 810. Fellow Team HMB Member Bryan Dermody came to lift and destroyed 777 for 2nd place. He will be pulling 800+ in the near future. After a long rest following my trip to Australia in April I was only able to put in minimal training for this contest. I opened light with 727 and then hit 760 on my second. Jesse’s attempt with 810 on his 3rd forced me to try at least 815 for the win. The lift was not pretty but I was able to complete the lift and defend my title for the 4th straight year. A great time was had by all and this event once again provided for some great camaraderie amongst all of the competitors. I am already looking forward to the 2015 Empire!
This week I am taking a rest from training but next week I will be right back at it to prepare for the USAPL Raw Nationals in Denver, Colorado. The 2014 Nationals are the qualifying event for the 2015 IPF World Championships to be held in Helsinki, Finland next June.
Train smart, stay healthy, set your goals high, and make sure to add GNC Pro Performance HMB to your supplement list.