Powerlifter Chad Penson is the First Man to Squat 400 Kilograms at 90KG, Raw W/ Wraps

Penson made powerlifting history at the 2021 Kern US Open in the Raw With Wraps Category, and now owns a world record.

The 2021 Kern US Open, sanctioned by the World Raw Powerlifting Federation (WRPF), was expected to be a proving ground for world records — and the first one is now in the books. Many people associate 90-kilogram dominance with powerlifter John Haack. After all, the man does own two world records. However, on April 24, 2021, Chad Penson was first to the record books with a 400-kilogram (881-pound) squat. He is the first man to squat 400 kilograms at a bodyweight of 90 kilos (198 pounds) in the Raw With Wraps category.

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Technically speaking, Penson actually broke the record twice. Before his 400-kilogram attempt, Penson squatted 393 kilograms (866 pounds), half a kilogram heavier than the previous world record. By comparison, Haack, who owns the world record total of 967.5 kilograms (2,133 pounds) at 90 kilograms, put up 337.5 kilograms (744 pounds) on the squat. 

For Penson, this new record is 60 kilograms over his previous best squat. He hit 340 kilograms at Boss of Bosses 6 in August of 2019. This is Penson’s first world record in his powerlifting career. The previous owner of the record was Austin Dodd, who completed a 392.5 kilograms lift in November of 2020 at the Raw Powerlifting Syndicate’s Raw and Uncut event in Fayetteville, Arkansas. That record stood for over five months before Penson broke it in San Diego, CA. Dodd did not compete at the Kern US Open this year.

This meet marks Penson’s 14th time stepping onto the competitive platform. He competed in his first meet — USAPL Raw Nationals — at the age of 20 in 2012. Since then, he’s stood atop the podium seven times and hasn’t placed lower than second since his first meet (he got fifth). 


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Penson’s opening lift was 370 kilograms, which went up very easily for him. His second lift was met with some unexpected excitement. During Penson’s second and record-setting attempt, fireworks went off behind him, as they did for most of the lifters on his flight. Subsequently, the music and lights went out. While the judges and spotters could still see Penson’s attempt, fans watching on the live stream were unable to. There were no issues with lighting on the 400-kilogram attempt.

The 2021 Kern US Open will finish on Sunday, April 25, 2021. Stayed tuned for a full meet recap. 

Featured Image: @kingpensonlifts on Instagram