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FIVE local powerlifters showed their class at the GPC Irish National Championships in Limerick last week.

Kyle Vauls, David Anderson, Alan Tosh, Gerry McAfee and Matthew Balfour, who train at Sam’s Gym, were competing as a guest team at the event. They were using it as a qualifying platform for the forthcoming European Championships in Serbia this May and the World Championships in Hungary in September.

Kyle Vauls put on a powerful display in the 110kg Open Class as he broke the British Record with a combined total of 1002.5kg. he squatted 400kg, benched 300kg and had a deadlift of 302.5kg.

Kyle now holds the British records in the squat and also in the bench, which he set back in 2011 with a lift of 317.5kg.

What makes this even more remarkable is that it was Kyle’s first competition since he suffered a bad bicep tear back in September last year.

Matthew Balfour had trouble getting squats passed by the referees, but he managed a 235kg bench and 290kg deadlift for two competition personal bests in the 100kg Open category.

David Anderson recorded his best outing to date with a 310kg squat, a 240kg bench and a 265kg deadlift in the 100kg Open category. His bench and overal total were personal bests for David, who has now qualified for the European Championships.

Alan Tosh hit a Masters, 50-55 age class, British record in the bench of 180kg in the 100kg 50/55 category. Congratulations to Alan.

And Gerry McAfee lifted a massive 332.5kg deadlift in the masters 100kg 55-60 age class. This is Gerry’s signature lift and he can match lifters of any age group in the deadlift.

David, Kyle and Matthew now plan on lifting at the European Championship in Serbia in May and hope to have further success there.

Meanwhile, Sam Graham, who runs Sam’s Gym in Ballymoney, also travelled to Limerick, where he sat his International Referee exam. Sam can now referee at World and European events, congratulations to him.