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Highland powerlifter in his 70s sets a new benchmark as Ash Sinclair from the Black Isle smashes a bench press world record while taking part in the British powerlifting championships in King’s Lynn


By Ian Duncan

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Over 70 bench press world record holder Ash Sinclair. Picture Gary Anthony
Over 70 bench press world record holder Ash Sinclair. Picture Gary Anthony

A Highland powerlifter in his 70s has smashed a bench press world record.

Ash Sinclair (71) set the new record while taking part in the British powerlifting championships in King’s Lynn recently.

Competing in the up to 82.5kg class the previous record stood at 118 kilos, but Mr Sinclair, who lives in Balnabeen on the Black Isle and regularly trains at Gym 300 in Inverness, actually surpassed that four times on successive lifts – and eventually lifted 135 kilos on his final lift of the day.

He said: “Given that the existing world record was 118 and we are allowed three lifts in the competition my opening lift was 125 and the opening lift always has to be ‘doable’. I opened at 125 and it was very ‘doable’.

“My second lift I put in at 130. That was successful and I was happy with that one. My third lift, which counted for the competition, was 132.5.

“By breaking the world record you are allowed a fourth lift with all the international referees there, only for record breaking purposes, so I took the option of a fourth lift which is where I got the 135 – I had already won the competition.

“Anyone over 40 is a Masters Lifter and then it goes in steps of five years, so your Masters is one at 40, two at 45, and I am in my 70s and it was my first competition in the over 70s – hence I think that is why I broke the record.”

He said he was comfortably ahead of the other competitors and there were a total of 50 entrants in the various weight classes and just five of his age or older.

Mr Sinclair said he had played sport all of his life and added: “I’ve been back to competitively powerlifting for the past few years, having done it in my 30s.

“I’ve been back on the national and world circuit for about 15 years.”

Mr Sinclair is also a member of the British Drug Free Powerlifting Association and did a drugs test after his record breaking lift.

He said: “The whole ethos of the federation is drug free.

“I was tested, which is a very formal procedure these days, and an expensive one for the federation to take on, so there is always a group test.

“I had broken a world record so I was a candidate for being looked at.

“I had no hesitation and I passed the drug test because that is my ethos anyway.

“I was happy to be part of that process.”


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