Deadlift World Record: -83kg Kjell Bakkelund Pulls 325.5kg Weighing 73kg

When Kjell Bakkelund turned up at the Arnold Classic Europe this weekend, he was heavier than usual. The Arnold Classic is an IPF-sanctioned, Wilks-only competition, so while he typically competes as a -74kg athlete, he turned up at 77.36 kilograms (170.5lb).

While Britain’s Daniel Worsley beat his squat by 2.5kg with a 260kg lift, Bakkelund dominated the rest of the competition with a 190kg (419lb) bench and an IPF world record deadlift of 325.5 kilograms. He failed his third deadlift attempt of 330 kilograms, but his previous deadlift had nonetheless beaten Robert Mihaylov’s previous world record — by just 500 grams.

You can check out all three of the lifts below, but note that the footage is very dark.

His Wilks score of 539.32 was the highest of all the raw athletes, beating out Britain’s -120kg athlete Tony Cliffe by a little over 21 points. Cliffe was, uh, not pleased with his performance.

Bakkelund posted on his Instagram:

Todays competition: Arnold Classic Europe 2017. Weighed 77,36 and lifted 773. Did a 257,5 squat, 190 bench and a 325,5 deadlift and a new WR in the 83kg class. Now i got the deadlift WR in 74 and 83!

It was a really good day for squats, the bench was okey, and the deadlift was better then worlds but not where i want it to be. But won the overall, got a pr in squat and deadlift and got myself a new wr. Thanks Stig Rune for helping me today.

The Norwegian athlete now holds the IPF deadlift world record in the -83kg class and the -74kg class, in which he pulled 322 kilograms (710 pounds) at the IPF World Classic Powerlifting Championships this June.

Bakkelund told BarBend that this performance was a one-off; he didn’t bother cutting weight since it was a Wilks-only event and he expects to continue lifting in the -74kg class for many more years. In three weeks, he’ll compete at the Norwegian nationals as a -74kg lifter — here’s hoping he retains a lot of his strength and breaks another record.

Featured image via European Powerlifting Federation on Facebook.

Nick English

Nick English

Nick is a content producer and journalist with over seven years’ experience reporting on four continents. His first articles about health were on a cholera outbreak in rural Kenya while he was reporting for a French humanitarian organization. His next writing job was covering the nightlife scene in Shanghai. He’s written on a lot of things.

After Shanghai, he went on to produce a radio documentary about bodybuilding in Australia before finishing his Master’s degrees in Journalism and International Relations and heading to New York City. Here, he’s been writing on health full time for more than five years for outlets like BarBend, Men's Health, VICE, and Popular Science.

No fan of writing in the third person, Nick’s passion for health stems from an interest in self improvement: How do we reach our potential?

Questions like these took him through a lot of different areas of health and fitness like gymnastics, vegetarianism, kettlebell training, fasting, CrossFit, Paleo, and so on, until he realized (or decided) that strength training fit best with the ideas of continuous, measurable self improvement.

At BarBend his writing focuses a little more on nutrition and long-form content with a heaping dose of strength training. His underlying belief is in the middle path: you don’t have to count every calorie and complete every workout in order to benefit from a healthy lifestyle and a stronger body. Plus, big traps are cool.

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