Smith qualifies for World Powerlifting Championships

Robert Smith attempts a lift.
Staff Writer

Robert Smith thought he was just filling a void in May when he decided to participate in a national powerlifting meet.

He saw the 60-69 age league list was a little short so he decided to help out and give it a try.

Smith ended up successfully completing eight of nine attempts and became an automatic selection for the world team. He will travel to Sweden in October for the World Powerlifting Competition.

The competition steps up significantly for Smith, but he looks forward to the opportunity.

“We’re hoping to do well,” Smith said. “Since we are on their home turf, the Swedish teams are really loaded. In my class, one of their entries is someone who has won it twice before and holds the world record so it’s going to be hard to outright beat him. He would have to beat himself somehow. There is another guy who’s qualifying total is close to mine.”

Smith has pretty good numbers. He sports a 529-pound squat, a 396-pound bench and a 518-pound dead lift.

Even though he anticipates a challenge, Smith sets his goal high.

“I am hoping to finish on the podium,” Smith said. “I think I’m very competitive against the rest of the lifters in that group.”

Smith teaches in the math department at Mississippi State. He came to Starkville in 1986.