A little over a week ago, we came across Ray “Ray Ray” Williams going heavy in training with a 975 pound back squat, the heaviest such lift we’d seen raw (in training or competition). The lift was more than ten pounds above his IPF-record squat in the “Classic” category (no squat suits or wraps, just belt and sleeves), which was set this past June at 438kg/~963.6 pounds.

Williams said he’d never perform the lift again, which we assumed to mean he’d never again go that heavy in the same manner as the 975 squat — which was done completely without spotters, just safety chains around the bar when Williams walked it out himself. We wondered when we might see Williams become the first squatter to break the 1,000 pound mark to IPF Classic/raw standards.

We didn’t have to wait all that long.

Now, Williams has outdone himself with a 1,000 pound lift, this time with spotters. Do you think he hit competition-passable depth? Video embedded below.

The lift has already been reposted by the IPF and numbers powerlifting fan pages on Instagram, though most are quick to point out this won’t officially count, as it’s “simply” a training lift.

[Check out some other big training squats from weightlifter Nathan Damron and powerlifter Rubets Oleksandr!]

But for what it’s worth, Williams seems pretty happy with the performance and fairly confident he’ll be able to hit it in a competition setting soon. From the big man himself:

Just broke that 1000 lb barrier and I don’t care about anything else!!!!

What’s the most impressive raw squat you’ve seen lately? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured image: Ray Williams (@optimusprime_334) on Instagram


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BarBend's Co-Founder and Editorial Director, David is a veteran of the health & fitness industry, with nearly a decade of experience building and running editorial teams in the space. He also serves as a color commentator for both National and International weightlifting competitions, many through USA Weightlifting. David graduated from Harvard University and served for several years as Editorial Director/Chief Content Officer of Greatist.com. In addition to his work in the health & fitness industry, David has been a writer for Fortune and Fortune.com, as well as a contributor to Forbes.com, Slate, and numerous other outlets across the web and in print. He's especially passionate about the intersection of strength sports and quality, professional media coverage — overlapping interests shared by the BarBend editorial team and which drive their content strategy each and every day. David is a proud Kentucky native. In his free time, David is a voiceover actor and can be heard in animated films, independent shorts, music videos, commercials, and podcasts.