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Team Focus Wins the Starting Strength Challenge National Title!

by Meaghan posted April 28, 2016

The Focus team was ECSTATIC last Sunday when Starting Strength Challenge organizer, Dana Varrone, announced that we had won the Long Island City meet title for the SECOND year in a row.

Focus Team wins!

Coach Brent Carter did an amazing job coaching us along the way and judging the event; and, little did he know, he’d soon have even more reason to be proud.

Focus’s own Louie Tejada won Best Male Lifter for the second year in a row with an impressive 485-lb. squat, 185-lb. press and 575-lb. deadlift.

Lou deadlift

And that was after being sick all week! He came VERY close to getting his goal weights of a 500-lb. squat and 600-lb. deadlift, and there’s not much doubt that he’ll get those numbers next time.

But the best news was yet to come: Yesterday, the Focus Team found out that we ranked FIRST in the NATION against ALL other teams competing at several other sites across the country in the Starting Strength Challenge last weekend.

To give you some context, here are some of our highlights from the CrossFit Gantry, Long Island City meet:

Newbie lifter and FPTI Master Course student Lauren Cafrelli went 9 for 9 in her first meet, ranking among the top female lifters with a 250-lb. squat, 107.5-lb. press and an impressive 315-lb. deadlift. All PRs but she was playing it safe; she had a lot more in the tank!

lauren c


First-time competitor Dominique Colarossi had a strong showing as well, with a 225-lb. squat, 80-lb. press and 260-lb. deadlift PR!

Dom PR deadlift


Focus Personal Training Manager, Ryan Heffernan, also made his first appearance in a meet, squatting 380, pressing 165 and deadlifting a solid 400 lbs.

ryan heff


Nick Law-Yue had a good day as well, with a 340-lb. griiiind of a squat PR, a 160-lb. press and a 375-lb. deadlift.

Nick L squat


Jen McCombs had a heart-wrenching deadlift grind as well, pulling a PR weight of 235 lbs. but unfortunately getting called on a hitch.

Jen Deadlift

Still a GREAT effort though! She finished with a 170-lb. squat, 55-lb. press and 220-lb. deadlift.

Most of us dislike the press, but Angelica Virga rocked it!

Angelica press

She ended up with 85 lbs., along with a 165-lb. squat and 190-lb. deadlift.

As for me, I finally got my 255-lb. deadlift PR.

Meaghan DL

But I credit the platform… I also ended up with a 200-lb. squat and 75-lb. press. A little disappointed with the press so I’ll be working on the hip whip for sure.

Focus also brought four clients who did quite well. Long-term company client, friend and head of Public Relations, Harris Theophanous, did an amazing job competing in his first meet as a Masters athlete. He finished with a 255-lb. squat, 115-lb. press and 270–lb. deadlift, and a big smile as usual.

Harris squat


Jessie Contour also had a great day, finishing second overall for females and putting up some of the heaviest lifts among the women there!

Jessie press

Jessie’s final numbers were 270-lb. squat, 90-lb. press and 315-lb. deadlift. Not too shabby for being sick all week!

Focus Barbell Class client Jack Hedges finished with a 315-lb. squat, 145-lb. press and 355-lb. deadlift.

Jack squat


And Andrew Scott finished with a 305-lb. squat, 130-lb. press and 365-lb. deadlift.

Andrew squat


It was a great time and we couldn’t be prouder of each other! Special thanks to all who came out for support, to those who sent it from afar and to the meet staff who made it all possible. Shout out to Focus trainer and meet photographer Pete Troupos for the pics.

Stay strong and we’ll be back to defend our title in October!


Filed under: news, press and promo, sports, strength training

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