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Former Forres Academy teacher secures top-ten finish at 2021 World Bench Press Championships


By Ewan Malcolm

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GRAEME Reid (42) put an incorrectly loaded bar behind him to secure a sixth place finish at the World Bench Press Championships in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Graeme's appearance at the tournament was his first against an international field.
Graeme's appearance at the tournament was his first against an international field.

The former Forres Academy teacher was representing Great Britain for the first time at an international competition after receiving the call in September.

"It was a tough one," Graeme said.

"A bit of a baptism of fire really. The loaders didn't load the bar correctly for my first lift adding an extra 10kg to one side to make it an uneven 200kg.

"My bicep took a bit of a shock from that. That was followed by miscommunication with the time I had to restart my lift."

One of Grame's lifts was hindered after the bar was loaded incorrectly.
One of Grame's lifts was hindered after the bar was loaded incorrectly.

Prior to heading out to Lithuania, Graeme had said that he was aiming to break his own 200kg record and win a medal if he could. However, the Moray based strong man is keeping things in perspective after a disruption hit outing in Vilnius.

He said: "Overall I can't be too disappointed with a 6th place finish in my first international so I'm chuffed really.

"Despite the complicationss that were out of my control I was delighted to get a 190kg bench press in and secure 6th in the world for my age and weight class.

"I'm now a fully fledged GB lifter and was honoured to take to the platform and get a total as part of such an amazing team under the skills of the boss."

Graeme had to contend with a fiercely competitive group which included participants from Estonia, Japan, Mongolia and the Czech Republic. He said he was "honoured" to be competing against such a strong field which included some professional lifters.

After falling just short of the goals he had set himself for the tournament, Graeme, who trains out of a log cabin just outside Aberlour, is hopeful of a return to competing internationally soon.

He said: "Hopefully it's not the last but if it is I've truly loved it and it's thanks to the support of my family, friends and my work colleagues that I got to this point."



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