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Major Press Release: Raw Unity Changing Venues and Adding Knee Wraps


The Cube Method author and sponsored Animal Nutrition athlete Brandon Lilly is the newest member of the Raw Unity Executive Committee. Brandon brings with him the support of Juggernaut Training Systems--and as a result next February 8-9, 2014, the Raw Unity Powerlifting Championships will expand to two separate—but still the same—powerlifting events. On February 8th, the Bench Press Only (separate press release to follow soon) and the traditional Raw Unity full powerlifting competition will take place. This will be the same event that has been going for 7 years now in which competitors are only allowed to wear a belt, a singlet, and certain approved neoprene knee sleeves. On February 9th Raw Unity will be adding a separate knee wraps and monolift event that will fall completely under the Raw Unity banner with the same rules, judging, etc. as the traditional Raw Unity event. This expansion to Raw Unity was spearheaded by Lilly in the hopes to bring the best raw powerlifters together under one roof and one set of rules for a weekend of some of the best raw lifting anywhere in the world.
There will be 2 different sets of qualifying totals: one set for day 1 and a different, higher set for day 2. These totals can be found by going to the Raw Unity web site at www.rawunitymeet.com . The day 2 qualifying totals will be an even 50 pounds higher than day 1 in every class across the board. A lifter will be allowed to compete on both days if they so choose.

The competition will be limited to 50 full powerlifters on day 1 and 50 full powerlifters on day 2 for a total of 100 full powerlifters. The traditional powerlifting weight classes will be observed. There will be more information to follow this week regarding the bench press only portion of Raw Unity 7.

The event itself, which has primarily been held in the Tampa Bay area, will also be changing to the beautiful Port St. Lucie Civic Center www.cityofpsl.com/civic/ . This change in venue was made possible by USPA Florida state chair Brian Burritt. The facility houses state of the art audio and visual equipment, cafeteria, pro shop, etc. as well as a collegiate size basketball gymnasium where the 2 day competition will take place.

Entry forms will be made available this week and will be announced on Powerlifting Watch as well as in the Raw Unity Facebook Group. If you have a qualifying total or if you plan to attend or would like to attend the 2014 Raw Unity Powerlifting Championships then it is advisable to request to be part of the group.

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I like this decision--you'll bring in a lot of raw lifters, both with and without knee wraps, and you'll still be able to treat them as separate styles of competition by holding them on different days. I think you'll see a lot of top lifters turn out now!

Dan Green is IN
Eric Lillibridge is IN
Chad Smith is IN
Brandon Lilly is IN
Ernie Sr. and Ernie Jr. are IN
Caitlyn Trout is IN
Becky Rich is IN
BJ Whitehead is IN
Corey Hayes is IN
Mark Miller is IN
Pete Rubish is IN
Jordan Wong is IN
Jay Nera is IN
Kade Weber is IN
John Petruzzi is IN
Therese Janc is IN

MORE COMING

Brantley Thorton is IN
Sam Byrd is IN barring injury

Brandon, would it be possible for you to display whether the lifters you have listed will wear wraps and which won't.

Curious who will be going head to head

Nice line up

LOOKS TO BE AN AWESOME WEEKEND!
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WESTCARYBARBELL
UNBREAKABLEGEAR

Fracturing the sport again...Go one way or the other or alternate from year to year. This just doubled the number of raw unity champions.

Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
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Andersonpowerlifting.com

I understand trying to maximize your talent of lifters at a prestigious venue but I think it could lead to further splintering of powerlifting. As of know, we have 50+Feds with different rules and standards. Furthermore we have 1,000+World Records not to mention the lack of credible judging. I believe the wraps with a monolift versus sleeves with a walkout on the squat has the potential of causing further debate and controversy within the raw powerlifting realm. In my opinion, we should stay traditional with walked out squats and knee wraps to compare apples to apples with legends of the past to see how we stack up today and preserve the tradition and integrity of powerlifting. As a business standpoint, equipment manufacturers will be more likely to sponsor raw events that include wraps in order to generate more revenue. I understand the reasoning of having 2 day event with different standards but I believe this could lead to further splintering and controversy. Once again, just my opinion and I understand that Eric and Brandon are trying to get a true competition that has the best of the best going head to head back like it used to be when there was only a handful of recognized Feds but they utilized one standard for all the lifters. This post is in no way belittling the efforts of Raw Unity trying to better powerlifting by gathering and promoting the head to head battles of the best versus the best cause Russia and other European countries are kicking r ass in powerlifting recognition and pro payouts.

Jon Elick wrote:
Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
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I'm a state referee for the USAPL and USPA. I like competition and seeing guys go head to head. Why not one year go wraps/mono the next go walkout no wraps? Splitting the two just waters down the competition.

Mark Freeman wrote:
Jon Elick wrote:
Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
Proudly sponsored by:
APT Pro Gear
Andersonpowerlifting.com

I'm a state referee for the USAPL and USPA. I like competition and seeing guys go head to head. Why not one year go wraps/mono the next go walkout no wraps? Splitting the two just waters down the competition.

The USAPL not allowing its lifters to come to Raw Unity doesn't help either.

It is going to be a great event with big-time lifting.

Eric Talmant wrote:
Mark Freeman wrote:
Jon Elick wrote:
Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
Proudly sponsored by:
APT Pro Gear
Andersonpowerlifting.com

I'm a state referee for the USAPL and USPA. I like competition and seeing guys go head to head. Why not one year go wraps/mono the next go walkout no wraps? Splitting the two just waters down the competition.

The USAPL not allowing its lifters to come to Raw Unity doesn't help either.

It is going to be a great event with big-time lifting.


Ok cool. So lets water the meet down even more by splitting it up.

I don't think it waters anything down. There are some guys who prefer wraps, some who prefer none. This is a way to bring those two groups together under one roof. Every lifter I've spoken to on BOTH sides expressed enthusiasm for the addition. I personally see it as a chance to make something positive... Too many people within the sport trying to have a pissing contest about every difference under the sun. Just get some damn strong people together and the best guy wins in his discipline.

Furthermore, watering it down would seem as though the talent level dropped. I think ADDING a day, and ADDING high caliber lifters would indicate that the talent pool just got deeper.

John Petruzzi-

I like what Eric has done this year with the decision of adding a day of knee wraps only. I was going to compete either way. But with this decision your bringing and getting the best raw lifters in the world together both w/wraps and without and giving them a stage to perform on at the same meet. It has not watered down anything, bigger and better lifters are coming to compete. Eric's RUM meets have the prestige and reputation of strict judging and I believe as long as he is running it that wont change nor should it, the same judges will be judging. I think more lifters are excited about this meet then ever before, I know I am.

Eric Talmant wrote:
Mark Freeman wrote:
Jon Elick wrote:
Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
Proudly sponsored by:
APT Pro Gear
Andersonpowerlifting.com

I'm a state referee for the USAPL and USPA. I like competition and seeing guys go head to head. Why not one year go wraps/mono the next go walkout no wraps? Splitting the two just waters down the competition.

The USAPL not allowing its lifters to come to Raw Unity doesn't help either.

It is going to be a great event with big-time lifting.

HAHA OWNED!

brandonlilly3 wrote:
Furthermore, watering it down would seem as though the talent level dropped. I think ADDING a day, and ADDING high caliber lifters would indicate that the talent pool just got deeper.

Ok maybe "watering it down" is a bad choice of words. It does however splinter the meet. This is the type of meet that should not have any divisions, just open classes. If RUM officials thinks adding wraps is the way to go then just add wraps and be done with it. That way if someone wants to be RUM champion then they better learn to use wraps.

jamie mcdougal
I agree there will be a lot of talent but the head to head competitions may be lacking. Example Brantley Thorton that has the highest 181 total with wraps and Jamie Lewis highest total without wraps, will one of those lifters decide to crossover to wraps or ditch the wraps for head to head competition? This is what I am envisioning being an issue. If Brantley is used to wraps and a mono-lift then he has the advantage from the get go, whereas if they both wear sleeves only and have to walk it out,,then the advantage swings to Jamie. This will be an issue more than everyone is thinking of now but will be prevalent after the meet. Just trying to look at it from a lifters perspective having an equal playing field considering all-time records are separated but current rankings are combined.

I personally like the new format. It is going to allow a lot of the "big time" lifters that never go to RUM because of the no knee wraps issue. I see what Mark is saying about keeping it one format so there is one true Raw Unity "champion", but at this point it is like beating a dead horse. The opinion on whether or not "raw" is with knee wraps or without is so diverse that there is never going to be a universal agreement on that issue because of all of the federations.

With RUM being on two separate days, separating the wraps and no wraps, it eliminates the issue of two winners in one weight class in a single day..at least it is going to be separating at this meet so that shouldn't be a conflict for anybody.

I do agree with McDougal though. Everybody wants to see certain lifters in weight classes go head to head that tend to lift either wrapped/non wrapped. It would be nice if some of these lifters can come to the agreement of competing with or without wraps. It would be awesome to see certain lifters compete as long as they could come to a compromise.

As for me personally, I don't understand the need for the monolift, but if it attracts more lifters..so be it.

Also for me personally, I don't really care...I think it's awesome that there is going to be a meet where most of the top raw lifters in the country (and hopefully out of the country) are going to share the same platform.

wraps and walkout seems like a decent compromise to me. That could get the most people on the same platform.

Last year, the field at RUM was pretty thin--the competition was still very strong, but certain weight-classes weren't well represented.

I understand why people would be worrying about this splintering the field, but the overall caliber of competition is going to go up, not down, with this change. At least six lifters who own current world or American records and weren't there last year--Dan Green, Eric Lilliebridge, Sam Byrd, Chad Smith, Caitlyn Trout, and Brantley Thornton--have already committed. I'm guessing the second day has had something to do with that.

So, you might not see all the top lifters go head-to-head, but you will see a fuller field of stronger lifters over two days, and you'll see the weight classes at 220+ better represented.

In my opinion, separating it in this way gives a fair representation of the sport of raw powerlifting. The meet is called "raw unity," and this will bring both unwrapped and wrapped lifters to the same event. You can say that it's further splintering the sport, but in my opinion, it's just a reflection of a sport that's already splintered. The purpose of RUM, as I understand it, isn't to try and impose a definition of "raw", but rather, to be as inclusive as possible while upholding legitimate standards of competition. I think this move does just that.

KPKeough wrote:
Last year, the field at RUM was pretty thin--the competition was still very strong, but certain weight-classes weren't well represented.

I understand why people would be worrying about this splintering the field, but the overall caliber of competition is going to go up, not down, with this change. At least six lifters who own current world or American records and weren't there last year--Dan Green, Eric Lilliebridge, Sam Byrd, Chad Smith, Caitlyn Trout, and Brantley Thornton--have already committed. I'm guessing the second day has had something to do with that.

So, you might not see all the top lifters go head-to-head, but you will see a fuller field of stronger lifters over two days, and you'll see the weight classes at 220+ better represented.

In my opinion, separating it in this way gives a fair representation of the sport of raw powerlifting. The meet is called "raw unity," and this will bring both unwrapped and wrapped lifters to the same event. You can say that it's further splintering the sport, but in my opinion, it's just a reflection of a sport that's already splintered. The purpose of RUM, as I understand it, isn't to try and impose a definition of "raw", but rather, to be as inclusive as possible while upholding legitimate standards of competition. I think this move does just that.

You make great points. I just feel like if someone wants to be RUM 220 champ they have to beat Byrd, if you want to be 242 champ you have to beat Dan Green, if you want to be 275 champ you have to beat Eric L. etc.

KPKeough wrote:
Last year, the field at RUM was pretty thin--the competition was still very strong, but certain weight-classes weren't well represented.

I understand why people would be worrying about this splintering the field, but the overall caliber of competition is going to go up, not down, with this change. At least six lifters who own current world or American records and weren't there last year--Dan Green, Eric Lilliebridge, Sam Byrd, Chad Smith, Caitlyn Trout, and Brantley Thornton--have already committed. I'm guessing the second day has had something to do with that.

So, you might not see all the top lifters go head-to-head, but you will see a fuller field of stronger lifters over two days, and you'll see the weight classes at 220+ better represented.

In my opinion, separating it in this way gives a fair representation of the sport of raw powerlifting. The meet is called "raw unity," and this will bring both unwrapped and wrapped lifters to the same event. You can say that it's further splintering the sport, but in my opinion, it's just a reflection of a sport that's already splintered. The purpose of RUM, as I understand it, isn't to try and impose a definition of "raw", but rather, to be as inclusive as possible while upholding legitimate standards of competition. I think this move does just that.

Perfectly stated. It's a start. Maybe the "matchups" will be lacking, maybe they won't. These people said they'd come within an hour of the announcement. If everything goes as planned it could grow each year. Nothing is perfect over night. This is an opportunity to have an event that becomes known as THE showcase meet for American Raw lifting. With that we could see international lifters come, then you talk about some real growth.

I love wraps, and no wraps. I see a guy like Sam Byrd squat nearly 800 lbs I recognize his strength. I see Eric squat nearly 900 lbs I recognize his strength. Strong is strong, respect strength, support the lifters, and support ideas that hold to that... RUM.

Mark Freeman wrote:
Jon Elick wrote:
Mark Freeman...just curious...are you a state chairman for any federation and/or do you host any meets? Are you a certified judge for any feds?
Proudly sponsored by:
APT Pro Gear
Andersonpowerlifting.com

I'm a state referee for the USAPL and USPA. I like competition and seeing guys go head to head. Why not one year go wraps/mono the next go walkout no wraps? Splitting the two just waters down the competition.

I think the USPA is a great organization, Steve Denison is a stand-up guy, and I'm a National Ref for them. However, I have to ask...did you make any comment like "Oh great, ANOTHER fed to water down the competition/records" when the USPA was formed not too long ago? I mean, the USPA may actually be the newest fed on the block and you chose to judge for them, but you seem to have an issue with adding a division to RUM. Unless I'm really missing something here, it seems a bit hypocritical. FYI, I'm not trying to pick a fight, just wondering why it's OK in one case, but not the other...

WALKED OUT RAW...MONOLIFT RAW(WRAPS)? SHUT UP

All I see is a bunch of people WHO AREN'T putting together meets of their own to further the sport...and also WHO AREN'T or haven't competed at RUM before...bitching and complaining. I stand by RUM's decisions and your opinions don't mean anything unless you're willing to contribute in some way or another.

Do I prefer one over the other? Yes, I'm a purist, I like walked out...But finally, I'll get to meet people like the Lillibridges in person and not have to compromise my own preferences.
Will I be disappointed if guys like Dan Green and Sam Byrd compete in wraps instead of raw? Very much so. I like sharing the platform with them.
Will having more lifters there on the weekend take away from anyone? I do not see how. The more like minded men and women under one roof...the better.

A splintered sport? Raw, Raw(wraps), Single-ply, Multi-ply..... wow...4 whole categories....

Did people complain in sprinting when they introduced the 200m, 400m. 800m? Additional sprint styles.....more athletes...more to appreciate...

Personally, all i want to see is people saying their numbers correctly... ie "I squatted 881 monolift and wraps." "I squatted 800 walked out raw." "I squatted 1100 multiply."

If there were a 4 day meet, each day including one of the categories....id compete and watch....anyone who wouldn't simply doesnt love powerlifting so your opinions on the matter of improving the sport....just shut up.
-Nera

www.upstrong.blogspot.com

^^Jay pretty much said it perfectly

Jay Nera wrote:
WALKED OUT RAW...MONOLIFT RAW(WRAPS)? SHUT UP

All I see is a bunch of people WHO AREN'T putting together meets of their own to further the sport...and also WHO AREN'T or haven't competed at RUM before...bitching and complaining. I stand by RUM's decisions and your opinions don't mean anything unless you're willing to contribute in some way or another.

Do I prefer one over the other? Yes, I'm a purist, I like walked out...But finally, I'll get to meet people like the Lillibridges in person and not have to compromise my own preferences.
Will I be disappointed if guys like Dan Green and Sam Byrd compete in wraps instead of raw? Very much so. I like sharing the platform with them.
Will having more lifters there on the weekend take away from anyone? I do not see how. The more like minded men and women under one roof...the better.

A splintered sport? Raw, Raw(wraps), Single-ply, Multi-ply..... wow...4 whole categories....

Did people complain in sprinting when they introduced the 200m, 400m. 800m? Additional sprint styles.....more athletes...more to appreciate...

Personally, all i want to see is people saying their numbers correctly... ie "I squatted 881 monolift and wraps." "I squatted 800 walked out raw." "I squatted 1100 multiply."

If there were a 4 day meet, each day including one of the categories....id compete and watch....anyone who wouldn't simply doesnt love powerlifting so your opinions on the matter of improving the sport....just shut up.
-Nera

www.upstrong.blogspot.com

There you have it from one of my favorite lifters, and no doubt one of the best ever. Thanks Jay

I don't see what the big deal is. I'm just excited to meet and watch some of the best raw lifters in the world compete. I'm with Jay, I stand by RUM's decision and I plan on being there and having fun!!!

KPKeough wrote:
Last year, the field at RUM was pretty thin--the competition was still very strong, but certain weight-classes weren't well represented.

I understand why people would be worrying about this splintering the field, but the overall caliber of competition is going to go up, not down, with this change. At least six lifters who own current world or American records and weren't there last year--Dan Green, Eric Lilliebridge, Sam Byrd, Chad Smith, Caitlyn Trout, and Brantley Thornton--have already committed. I'm guessing the second day has had something to do with that.

So, you might not see all the top lifters go head-to-head, but you will see a fuller field of stronger lifters over two days, and you'll see the weight classes at 220+ better represented.

In my opinion, separating it in this way gives a fair representation of the sport of raw powerlifting. The meet is called "raw unity," and this will bring both unwrapped and wrapped lifters to the same event. You can say that it's further splintering the sport, but in my opinion, it's just a reflection of a sport that's already splintered. The purpose of RUM, as I understand it, isn't to try and impose a definition of "raw", but rather, to be as inclusive as possible while upholding legitimate standards of competition. I think this move does just that.

You really believe that the 220s and up were not well represented?

The winners of the 220s and 242s were myself and Kade Weber. I am gonna list the names of all the lifters in North America that have totaled higher... Dan Green... that's it.

You are entitled to your opinion but I think it's bullshit. RUM 4 and 5 Champion Jay Nera was also there defending. If the 220s and up were so weak then where were all these stronger lifters that you know?

RUM to me is a celebration and a family reunion. I get to share a platform with some of the best lifters on the planet and then I get to party with these people after. Adding the wraps and mono on the second day is only going to bring more awesome people I get to meet and party with.

I feel sorry for the lifters that don't show. They are really missing out on being part of something special.

Going to be a great show!

Brian Burritt
JBURRD LLC.PRO SHOP
www.jburrdllc.com

jamie mcdougal
1st of all Jay I have competed at RUM and thought it was a great meet. I am in no way bitching or complaining about the venue, just pointing out that there may be a lack of head to head competition because of having 2 choices instead of 1. I know u r a very accomplished lifter and know how to have logical debate so saying "shut up" because lifters r questioning the format of the venue makes little to no sense from a logical debating point. Out of respect to you as a lifter, I understand your frustration that some people want to bitch that stand on the sidelines and never really compete unless they r guaranteed 1st place. Good luck Jay and hope that all the great competitors end up going against one another to see who is truly the best in that given day.

Matt Schmidt will be a great addition to the 220 class. He just totaled 1860 raw with leaving a bunch on the platform. By RUM there is no doubt in my mind he will be looking for mid 1900.

Jeremy Hamilton wrote:
KPKeough wrote:
Last year, the field at RUM was pretty thin--the competition was still very strong, but certain weight-classes weren't well represented.

I understand why people would be worrying about this splintering the field, but the overall caliber of competition is going to go up, not down, with this change. At least six lifters who own current world or American records and weren't there last year--Dan Green, Eric Lilliebridge, Sam Byrd, Chad Smith, Caitlyn Trout, and Brantley Thornton--have already committed. I'm guessing the second day has had something to do with that.

So, you might not see all the top lifters go head-to-head, but you will see a fuller field of stronger lifters over two days, and you'll see the weight classes at 220+ better represented.

In my opinion, separating it in this way gives a fair representation of the sport of raw powerlifting. The meet is called "raw unity," and this will bring both unwrapped and wrapped lifters to the same event. You can say that it's further splintering the sport, but in my opinion, it's just a reflection of a sport that's already splintered. The purpose of RUM, as I understand it, isn't to try and impose a definition of "raw", but rather, to be as inclusive as possible while upholding legitimate standards of competition. I think this move does just that.

You really believe that the 220s and up were not well represented?

The winners of the 220s and 242s were myself and Kade Weber. I am gonna list the names of all the lifters in North America that have totaled higher... Dan Green... that's it.

You are entitled to your opinion but I think it's bullshit. RUM 4 and 5 Champion Jay Nera was also there defending. If the 220s and up were so weak then where were all these stronger lifters that you know?

RUM to me is a celebration and a family reunion. I get to share a platform with some of the best lifters on the planet and then I get to party with these people after. Adding the wraps and mono on the second day is only going to bring more awesome people I get to meet and party with.

I feel sorry for the lifters that don't show. They are really missing out on being part of something special.

Sorry--I didn't mean to cause offense. I wasn't trying to imply that they weren't well represented; I know there were some really strong lifters at those weights, and the winning totals were very impressive. I just meant that the addition of wraps is going to attract a lot of higher-weight lifters over to compete. I guess I'm referring more to 275/308/SHW and misspoke, sorry about that. You're all giants to me.

I have never been more excited to finish last at meet! That being said, I love RUM and the competition and go to compete and have fun with the best. Looking forward to it!

A lot of the best female lifters in the lighter weight classes squat in wraps. I think this would really open the field up for a greater turnout in the women's division, and I'm excited about that. I don't squat wrapped, myself, but would really be happy to meet and compete alongside anyone who knows their craft who's around my size.

RUM 7 is going to show North America just what is possible when we join together and work together.

I have been in this sport since 1995 and even I am excited to see the names that are coming to RUM 7. I will be as big a fan as a meet director.

Johnny, Brandon, Bob, Brian, and I are so honored you guys are getting behind RUM like this.

It gives us so much more ammo when we approach sponsors for prize money and support. You have our word that we will be working harder than ever between now and February to give you guys the event you all deserve.

Respectfully,

Eric

www.rawunitymeet.com

Raw Unity Facebook Group

Awesome, I may be down for going as well...

Sign me Up!!!!
Eric "BIG EZY" Downey
KELLUM POWERLIFTING

Its going to be a great meet!
Maybe even a historical event!


Sponsored by Lifting Large serious gear for serious athletes

Spoken with these individuals and they have some obligations to check on but so long as there is no conflict they are in.

Jeremy Hoornstra
Matt Wenning
Al Caslow

Jeff Frank is IN

Ellen Stein

I am in and so is Gillian Ward

Robert Wilkerson-In

Shelley Antie-In

Looks like a great event - what about "Master" - aka - older person lifter competition for the future? - Like the top ten from all the feds - raw - wraps -- likely all may not go to participate - but could expand the event?
I know some of the competitors could compete Open - but just curious - might be awesome for head to head competition! Maybe this has already been considered -- Wish my numbers were high enough to go!

Wayne Howlett promoter of Australian Powerlifting and CAPO director is coming!! Another 2200+ caliber lifter!

Just spoke with Lilly and I wanna throw my name out there. Wanna be the best, then you have to compete against the beat!!!!

Casey "Big Dawg" Sumner

*Best

Well done Eric

I'm in @ 181 RAW

I have judged at all the rum's that have been held in Fla. I did not make Texas. I have seen some outstanding lifting(i have been in the sport 50 years) at these meets. It is lifting as it should be.
Last year the number of lifters not the lifting was down. The meet can not be run each year at a loss. Those of you who know Eric personally, may have some idea of how much money he has lost
The wraps were added to hopefully get another group of lifters to fill out the meet
How this goes will determine what is in future meets.
I look forward to the pleasure of judging many new records next year

Bob

I will be moving to VA in Sept and have to get a feel for the new command see how supportive they will be but Im in if al goes well. Reeper USMC

No knee wraps, it's just causes more division where less elite lifters will face each other.

J Hack.

... all things are possible to him that believeth.

In for 220 w/wraps.

Just wanted to post an enormous THANK YOU for ERIC TALMANTS : kindness, time, personal sacrifice and effort that he puts forth in order to put together the Raw Unity Meets.
What goes on behind the scenes and the months of preparation he puts forth, in order to accommodate all of the lifters should be recognized. Eric is AWESOME and makes it possible for RAW lifters all over the country to congregate and compete in such a prestigious event.
Thank you Eric for your involvement in the sport and making RUM such an enjoyable event.
You are truly wonderful.
Sincerely, Lisa Shapiro

I am curious where all these whining complainers have been for the last 6 years? Did you show up to compete, support, donate money or do anything to benefit the promotion of the ideals embodied by the meet? If not, then STFU. You had your chance to cast your vote, to make your voice known. By doing nothing you said you dont support the meet, so who cares what you have to say now. You didnt supoort it then, you dont support it now, your support, or lack thereof, means nothing. We push forward anyways.

To say there will be less competition somehow is ignorant. I hate to say it, but any direct competition in the previous RUMs has been dismal. Its been a valient effort, but the turn out and support has been far less than anticipated. Yet, in one fell swoop, the RUM 7 now has more support and confirmed lifters than any previous year.

You want it to be no wraps, then send in your entry and show support, or make a donation to the no wrap winner's pot. Otherwise, your opinion means nothing and your time is better spent, and just as effective, as making political rants and memes on facebook.

This is 10% Luck, 20% Skill, 15% Concentrated Power of Will... 5% Pleasure, 50% Pain, and 100% Reason to Remember the Name!

mcdougal wrote:
jamie mcdougal
I agree there will be a lot of talent but the head to head competitions may be lacking. Example Brantley Thorton that has the highest 181 total with wraps and Jamie Lewis highest total without wraps, will one of those lifters decide to crossover to wraps or ditch the wraps for head to head competition? This is what I am envisioning being an issue. If Brantley is used to wraps and a mono-lift then he has the advantage from the get go, whereas if they both wear sleeves only and have to walk it out,,then the advantage swings to Jamie. This will be an issue more than everyone is thinking of now but will be prevalent after the meet. Just trying to look at it from a lifters perspective having an equal playing field considering all-time records are separated but current rankings are combined.

I fail to see how this is even an issue. Without the day 2 w/ wraps, none of the wrapped lifters would show up to challenge the no wrap guys. Why not, because its been 6 years already and they havent expressed any interest. What would happen if it stayed no wraps? You might get some of the same lifters who came before and still no head to head competition between the 2. Its the first year. Give it a shot and see what rivalries develop. Dan Green and i have already tossed around the idea of doing BOTH days- day 1 at 220 and day 2 at 242. Im pretty sure we are both crazy enough to be half serious about it!