Power: Kaiserslautern’s record holder returns, takes strongest

Story and photo by Christine June
U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern

***image1***Kaiserslautern’s Debra Jackson is back, and to prove it, she lifted a total of 628 pounds (285 kilograms) to repeat as “strongest woman” Saturday at the Army’s Installation Management Activity-Europe’s Invitational Power Lifting Meet at the gym on Landstuhl Regional Medical Center.

Jackson, 49, who was the oldest competitor in the event, took first place in the women’s division 123-pound weight class and the Overall Female Lifter Title.

She is a seven-time Amateur Athletic Union World Champion and has held the record for the dead-lift event of 385 pounds at a body weight of 121 pounds since 1999.

When she last competed in the Landstuhl event in 2004, Jackson also grabbed the Overall Female Lifter Title. She has been away from the world of power lifting for almost two years due to a shoulder injury in October 2005, and subsequent surgery in March 2006.

Landstuhl’s meet was only her second one since her shoulder surgery. She competed Nov. 3 at Heidelberg’s event, taking first place in her division and weight class.

Her goal is to qualify for the U.S. National Women’s Championships to be held in the states in February 2008, which will hopefully make her eligible for the 2009 power lifting world games in Taiwan.

“My plan is to always, at every meet, improve from the last meet,” said Jackson. “I love the sport; I have great passion for it.”

Competing at the Landstuhl meet were 12 lifters in seven weight classes in the squat, bench press and dead lift events. Besides hometown Kaiserslautern, lifters also hailed from Mannheim, Ramstein, Spangdahlem, Lajes and Aviano.

Spangdahlem’s Troy Saunders, formerly from Sembach, grabbed the Overall Male Lifter Title by lifting a total of 1,565.2 pounds (710 kg).

Kaiserslautern had two more lifters – a husband and wife team. In her second meet, Maureen Materla took the female 148-pound (67.5 kg) weight class title and had a combined lift of 540 pounds (245 kg). Thomas Materla, who was competing in his first meet, placed second in the male 275-pound (125 kg) weight class, lifting a total of 1,223.6 pounds (555 kg).

Ramstein’s sole lifter was Michael Brown, who lifted a total of 1, 267.6 pounds (575 kg) to earn the 181-pound (82.5 kg) male weight class title.

Top places (weights are rounded off from kilos to pounds) for squat, bench, dead lift and totals were:

Women’s Division: 132-pound weight class: (1) Kaiserslautern’s Debra Jackson – 204 lbs; 138 lbs; 287 lbs; 628 lbs. In 148-pound weight class: (1) Kaiserslautern’s Maureen Materla – 220 lbs; 110 lbs; 209 lbs.

Men’s Division: 181-pound weight class: (1) Ramstein’s Michael Brown – 452 lbs; 303 lbs; 513 lbs; 1,268 lbs.  (2) Mannheim’s Lee Walker – 0 lbs; 287 lbs; 419 lbs;  705 lbs. In 198-pound weight class – (1) Spangdahlem’s Mahlon McLean – 353 lbs; 276 lbs; 507 lbs, 1,135 lbs. (2) Aviano’s Axel Zengotita – 353 lbs; 320 lbs; 441 lbs; 1,114 lbs . (3) Mannheim’s Garrison Pollard – 0 lbs; 287 lbs; 402 lbs; 689 lbs. In 220-pound weight class – (1) Spangdahlem’s Troy Saunders – 557 lbs; 402 lbs; 606 lbs; 1,565.21 lbs. Aviano’s Mike Reed – 529 lbs; 342 lbs; 562 lbs; 1,433 lbs. In 242-pound weight class – (1) Spangdahlem’s Trevis Humphrey – 474 lbs; 331 lbs; 623 lbs; 1,427 lbs

275-pound weight class – (1) Lajes’ Sandy Sais – 529 lbs; 408 lbs; 584 lbs; 1,521 lbs. (2) Kaiserslautern’s Thomas Materla – 408 lbs; 309 lbs; 507 lbs; 1,224 lbs.