Lift Off – Super Saturday Kickstarts 2013 Lifting league Tomorrow!

The 2013 Lifting League starts tomorrow (2nd March) with Super Saturday. Super Saturday is the first day of the season and the only time that all winning teams get a point for their efforts. For the rest of the season you need to win a match contesting top spot on the ladder to gain a point so some teams will be fighting for their only point of the season – plenty to lift for!

This year we have planned an opening tournament at Bethnal Green Weightlifting Club so six of the teams will get to meet each other, familiarise themselves with how a match works and, of course, many lifters will be taking part in their first competition. Six team are lifting at Bethnal Green tomorrow and the fixtures are as follows.

The day kicks off with a battle between two teams who will have their eye on the 2013 title. Bethnal Green A Team, who start 8th on the ladder take on the challenge of St Mary’s Weightlifting Club, the 2012 Lifting League Champions who start in 9th place. The ladder places from the previous year are reversed for the start of the new season so these teams will want to get off to a good start, earn a point and begin their climb to the top of the ladder for more. The teams weigh in at 14:00 so this match will start at about 14:20.

The second pair of matches see four teams compete in the league for the first time. Causer Conditioning, who start in 1st place on the ladder take on Crossfit CM2, starting in 2nd and Athletic Alliance, 3rd take on Rule Strength who start in 5th place. All these matches will start at approximately 16:00, hopefully a bit earlier. The two matches will take place simultaneously, one at each end of the gym. This is in the spirit of the league, the format has been designed to take up as little space as possible so matches can place in clubs without the need to close a facility completely so it will become a familiar experience for lifters to be competing while others are training at the same time. Two platforms are ideal to hold a match but it could be done on one platform at a pinch.

My picks for teams to watch are the original 3 teams, OXP, St Mary’s and Bethnal Green plus latecomers to the 2012 Lifting League St Birinus. St Birinus had only one match last season but made short work of my GWL Instructors team (now incorporated into the Bethnal Green “B” team) and were very impressive. OXP, St M’s and BG have all proven their credentials and are established weightlifting clubs with national standard lifters so should be expected to mount strong campaigns in 2013. Obviously you never know how good the new teams are. I’ve had quite a few of their members visit Bethnal Green lately and there are some strong lifters among them. They will only improve with competition so the established teams will need to be at the top of their game!

A bit of advice for our new competitors:

  • It’s not what you start on but what you finish on that counts. Start with a nice safe weight and build your way into the competition. personally, I don’t even bother to look at what my rivals are lifting until the snatches are done, that’s when the competition really starts!
  • Get in early and watch the first match between Bethnal Green and St Mary’s. This will give you an idea of how a match works and familiarise you with things like waiting for a down signal from the referee etc. Me, Marius and Rob will be around as will others who competed last year so it will be an opportunity to ask questions as well.
  • Keep trying even if you are certainly going to lose your match. In the event of a 2-2 draw (quite likely in a 4 vs 4 match) all the lifters on the team have their totals added up to one super total and it is this that decides the match. Even if you lose your pairing, a PB may be the difference between your team winning and losing the match overall.
  • Enjoy yourself!

Good luck to all teams (I obviously don’t really mean that if you’re lifting against Bethnal green).

I look forward to meeting you all tomorrow,

Giles