South Normanton strongman Craig Stone back to set a new British record

South Normanton powerlifter Craig Stone made his competitive comeback by breaking the British deadlift record in the Global Powerlifting Committee Masters Pro Show in Luton.

Thursday, 24th March 2022, 2:43 pm
Updated Thursday, 24th March 2022, 2:47 pm
Craig Stone with young protege William Deakin.

But he made a shaky start and said his recovery was down to backing from a youngster he is training, who he believes will hit the big time in the sport.

Stone, 47, is a two-times world champion, two-times European champion, four-times British champion and Scottish and Welsh title winner, and also holds British and European records.

“Getting back on the platform after a while following Covid and things, I had a few nerves. I missed a couple of lifts – it does happen,” he said.

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“If I am being totally honest it wasn’t my best performance and I missed two lifts - my second at 260kg and my fourth at 267.5kg.

“But I had a young lad there, William Deakin, who I'm training up with my Team Stone UK and he is incredible for 21, and he pulled me to one side and gave me a bit of a slap and a shake and told me to sort myself out.

“I carried on and I did manage to break the British record at 265kg and set a new PB of 267.5kg, thanks to William.

“I did get very disheartened after missing the second lift, but I had my wing man there from start to finish.

“This guy was unconditional throughout, so thanks for putting my head straight, also my coach Delroy McQueen for all his hard work preparing me for this event, Full Power Fitness and support from my loving family.”

On Deakin, he added: “I have been training him for five or six months.

“He is from Heanor and we train at Full Power Fitness there.

“William is an exceptionally strong lad. He is benching 150 and squatting 165 at 21.

“He has a massive future ahead of him. He has his first competition in Scotland in three weeks and just needs to iron his nerves out in time.”

Stone is now back to full fitness after a difficult few years.

“Before Covid I nearly died,” he said. “ I had kidney problems with medication I was on.

“I survived but went down to 85k in body weight and had all that to put back on. It was a painful gain, but my coach Delroy got me there.

“Also I snapped my left tibula a few years ago and the five bolts and two plates I have in there came loose which also knocked me off for a bit. It's been a bit of a struggle but you only get out what you put in.”

Stone is now preparing for the European Championships in July in the Czech Republic and said: “I am going to attempt to break the British and European deadlift records in a single lift.”