The 2023 International Powerlifting Federation (IPF) World Junior Powerlifting Championships (WJPC) in Cluj Napoca, Romania, brought many new records in the sub-Junior (ages 14-18) and Junior (ages 19-23) categories with outstanding performances in multiple weight classes.
Competing in her first World Championships in the 84-kilogram class, Erholove Izobodo-John smashed the IPF Junior raw deadlift world record with a massive 253 kilograms (558 pounds). Amanda Lawrence long-held the previous record at 249 kilograms. Take a look at Izobodo-John’s lift below, courtesy of the IPF Instagram page:
Erholove Izobodo-John made her international debut at the 2022 European Powerlifting Federation (EPF) European Classic Championships. There, she broke the Junior European raw squat record with 208 kilograms (459 pounds) and the OPEN European deadlift record with 240.5 kilograms (530 pounds) — an explosive entry onto the international scene, to say the least.
Izobodo-John has a relaxed style all her own, skipping to and from the platform without ever seeming to get fired up, even when approaching a maximal lift. Set up in a sumo stance, using only the assistance of a lifting belt, Izobodo-John dropped her hips, stretched twice, and pulled. The bar moved quickly, making the lift appear comfortable. Only a tiny hesitation just before lockout hinted at the huge weight on the barbell.
The referee gave the down command, and Izobodo-John followed the barbell to the platform, dropping to her knees and raising her hands to her head as emotion threatened to overcome her. The lights shone white; Izobodo-John leapt to her feet, dropped a charming courtesy, and skipped away as Junior world champion and Junior world record holder for the first time.
Not only a great deadlifter, Izobodo-John extended the European Junior raw squat record to 212.5 kilograms (468.5 pounds) on her second attempt. Here’s how the rest of her competition went:
2023 IPF World Junior Championships Results — Erholove Izobodo-John (GBR), 84KG
- 202.5 kilograms (446 pounds)
- 212.5 kilograms (468.5 pounds) — New Junior EPF Raw European Record
217.5 kilograms (480 pounds)
- Bench Press
- 92.5 kilograms (204 pounds)
- 97.5 kilograms (215 pounds)
- 100 kilograms (220.5 pounds)
- 230 kilograms (507 pounds)
- 240 kilograms (529 pounds)
- 253 kilograms (558 pounds) — New Junior IPF Raw World Record
- 565.5 kilograms (1,247 pounds)
At the 2023 British Powerlifting (BP) British Junior Championships, Izobodo-John deadlifted 250 kilograms (551 pounds) to top the British-tested deadlift rankings. That record was broken soon after by Aquinn Onuoha via 251 kilograms (553 pounds) at the English Powerlifting Association (EPA) Manchester Open.
After her performance at the WJPC, Izobodo-John is back at the top of those rankings. Onuoha competes again on Sept. 9, 2023, at the EPF Western European Championships in Iceland.
Izobodo-John is on the EPF European Junior Classic Championships roster in Budapest, Hungary, on October 17 — an incredibly fast turnaround. 2023 is the first year in which the EPF has hosted separate European championships for classic Junior and Open classes, and these contests will move to new positions in the 2024 calendar. There will be no opportunity to rest for Izobodo-John; she will compete again in six weeks.
Featured image: @theipf on Instagram