AMHERST – Power lifters from across Canada will make the pilgrimage to Amherst this weekend to compete in the CPF Pro-Am Nationals.
“This competition puts Amherst on the powerlifting map,” said Nathan Robertson, coach at the Amherst Powerlifting Club.
The competition is at the Amherst Wandlyn Inn.
Robertson has asked powerlifting officials for several years to allow Amherst to host the competition, and last year they got the green light.
“We’re going down to the States a lot and competing against big-named people, and they’re really supporting us, so the club is getting noticed all over.”
Robertson will be competing this weekend alongside 90 other lifters.
“I’m going to try to lift a little over 900 pounds on the squat and 700 pounds on the bench. If I can pull that off it will be the biggest bench in Atlantic Canada,” said Robertson.
He also says some power lifters will attempt to deadlift more than 800 pounds.
Robertson will turn 38-years-old this weekend, and he’s been powerlifting for 18 years.
“I’ve had a new coach for the last six months; Dave Hoff from Columbus, Ohio,” said Robertson. “He’s number one in the world right now, so he has a lot of experience and gives good advice.”
Other competitors from Amherst competing this weekend are Chelsea Cluett, Mark Cardinal, Crystal De Jong, Heather Nichols, and Matt Watson.
“Chelsea will be going for some national records, and this is Mark’s first competition,” said Robertson.
Four members of the Amherst Powerlifting Club who are not from Amherst will also be competing this weekend: Chad Ball of Fredericton, Jeff and Chris Zambello of St. John and Michael Hanson of Halifax.
“They train here when they can,” said Robertson.
Other lifters involved in the event are Trayci Metzger and Ian Cormier.
“Ian is a judge and Trayci is the meet director, she’s running the whole show for the weekend.”
The three-day event starts Friday.
Brandon Lilly is coming up from Kentucky,” said Robertson. “He’s a pro power lifter and he’s doing a strength seminar Friday, and we’re having our banquet on Friday as well.”
The powerlifting competition is Saturday and Sunday starting at 9 a.m., and will run until early evening.
Admission is $8 for each day.