This Sunday concluded the final day of the 2017 IPF Classic World Championships. The last flight of competitors was the highly anticipated men’s 120kg+ weight class, which holds some of the world’s strongest lifters. Two of these lifters include Ray Williams and Jezza Uepa, who are becoming known worldwide for their epic squat strength.
Unfortunately, there weren’t any squats world records set this year, but there were still some insane numbers put up. Williams finished with a 470kg (1,034 lb) raw squat, and Uepa hit 460kg (1,012 lb). Uepa had trouble on his first two attempts and actually got red lighted due to “soft knee” issues.
If this hadn’t been the case, then we might have seen completely different results, and Williams and Uepa both could have been pushed a little more. Check out the clips below of all the attempts by Uepa and Williams.
Uepa’s First 425kg Attempt
“Jezza Jezza Jezza! Population of Nauru 10,000, including Jezza…10,002 (laughs),” the announcer says as the crowd begins to get pumped.
Uepa walked out the weight, but never fully locked out his legs and settled, so the chief referee flagged him and made him reset the bar.
Below he walks out the second attempt for his opener, and receives the squat command quickly. He smokes the 425kg, but ends up with two reds and white light making the lift no good. The referees called soft knees again, even though the jury disagreed.
Williams’ First 450kg Attempt
Williams’ 450kg opener was 12kg higher than his 2016 IPF Classic World Championships 438kg squat world record. He absolutely buried this squat.
Uepa’s Second 425kg Attempt
Another walk out issue. Uepa is flagged again for “soft knees” and must rack again. At this point, Uepa hasn’t earned one good lift.
Williams’ Second 470kg Attempt
Williams successfully completely the lift earning three white lights. His speed was incredible out of the hole and only had a slight second of slowing down towards the final lockout.
Uepa’s Third 460kg Attempt
After being flagged twice, Uepa puts 460kg on the bar to claim second place and the silver medal. The 460kg moved like nothing, and Uepa definitely had more in the tank.
Williams didn’t attempt a third squat, as he was already secured the gold.
Whether there were world records set or not, there were still two 1,000lb+ squats that earned gold and silver medals, which is an insane feat for any raw lifter.
I know myself, and many other powerlifting fans, would have loved to see Williams and Uepa push the record a little more, but that wasn’t in the cards for the day. Uepa’s 425kg and 460kg squats both looked strong (along with William’s attempts), but unfortunately the “soft knee” flags on Uepa potentially held back both of these athletes from pushing the record even further.
Feature image screenshot from International Powerlifting Federation IPF YouTube channel.