SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. --
Schriever crowned a new male champion, while the reigning female champion retained her title, in one of the closest-ever finishes during the annual Bench Press/Dead Lift competition Friday.
Ian Sayler, 1st Space Operations Squadron, won the male title, edging out Gregory Sambula, 21st Medical Squadron, by 0.188 points. Sayler won the title despite not grabbing the top spot in either individual event.
“There were a lot of really good competitors there and it made for an exciting event,” Sayler said. “I’ve never done anything like this in a competition before.”
Sambula took top dead lift honors with his 565-pound lift, up 15 pounds from last year’s competition. Sayler was the only other competitor who lifted more than 500 pounds.
Michael Morris, 2nd Space Operations Squadron, pressed an impressive 360 pounds to win first place in the bench press, one of just five participants to lift more than 300 pounds.
Sayler said the atmosphere served as a good motivator.
“Even though you were competing, the guys were all cheering for each other,” he said. “The friendly competition helps motivate (us). If you didn’t get first or second, you’ve got something to work for next time.”
On the female side, Ana Shockey, 50th Security Forces Squadron, took top honors with Chantel Anderson, Missile Defense Agency, and Danielle Council, 50th Contracting Squadron spouse, finishing second and third, respectively. Only 0.18 points separated Shockey from Council.
“There was some excellent competition this year from the ladies,” Anderson said. “Ana and the other girls were inspiring to lift with. I’m looking forward to seeing them again at next year’s competition.”
Council was excited to see the five other female competitors.
“I lift between four and six times a week, and most of the time, I’m the only girl in the weight room,” she said. “I guess you could say I wasn’t expecting a lot of competition at first. I’m glad girls showed up and were able to throw around some heavy weight though, because it made the competition more fun.”
Shockey and Council tied for the highest dead lift among all female competitors with 285-pound lifts. Council recorded the highest bench press with 155 pounds.
“I was pretty happy with the way it went because I hit personal records for both lifts,” Council said. “I wish I had ended with a higher bench weight though because my last lift had gone up easier than expected.”
All told, the 18 participants lifted a combined 9,730 pounds during the event.
To make the competition fair for people of all sizes, rankings are based on the ratio of weight lifted to body weight. Between the two events, Sayler lifted more than 460 percent of his body weight, Sambula lifted almost 450 percent and Matthew Jackson, 50 CONS, who finished third, was just shy of 425 percent.
“I didn’t have any idea the competition would be this close,” Jackson said. “I was surprised at the end -- surprised to see that I placed.”
Jackson said the format seemed to even the playing field.
“I think it’s pretty fair,” he said. “Someone who weighs 200 pounds is going to lift more than someone who weighs 150 pounds. There’s got to be a formula to level the playing field.”
For the women, Shockey lifted 320 percent of her body weight, Anderson 310 percent and Council 303 percent.
“Two years ago, I did this competition and only hit 269 percent at the exact same weight,” Anderson said. “I was very excited to see the gains.”
For more information about the monthly fitness events, contact the fitness center at 567-6628.
1st-Ian Sayler, 1st Space Operations Squadron, 4.663 points
2nd-Gregory Sambula, 21st Medical Squadron, 4.475 points
3rd-Matthew Jackson, 50th Contracting Squadron, 4.247 points
Bench press-Michael Morris, 2nd Space Operations Squadron, 360 pounds
Dead lift-Sambula, 565 pounds
1st-Ana Shockey, 50th Security Forces Squadron, 3.214 points
2nd-Chantel Anderson, Missile Defense Agency, 3.109 points
3rd-Danielle Council, 50 CONS spouse, 3.034 points
Bench press-Council, 155 pounds
Dead lift-Shockey and Council, 285 pounds