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Powerlifting's Downfall

Powerlifting Bench Press Techniques


Since 1998 powerlifting has become stagnant and actually deteriorated as an organised sport. The previous article takes us to the end of 1998. By that time the IPF, recognised by GAISF and various national sport councils, had lost its monopoly and premiere position as a federation.

The WPC, through the structural building of that organisation via the efforts of the European Powerlifting Congress (EPC), became the primary movement for the sport. Ernie Frantz, instead of enjoying the spread and growth of the WPC, made dictates and created personal conflicts within the federation. Carl Smith was directing the international development of the WPC and gained legal international recognition of the EPC. Along with this position comes the responsibility of credibility.

The loose standards of the WPC were attempted to be cleaned up. This was understood by many of the officials and those close to Mr. Frantz within his circle. The 1996 World Championships were held in Durban, South Africa. Mr. Frantz did not attend due to personal and alleged legal reasons. Three months earlier Mr. Frantz made a public scene in a Las Vegas restaurant stating he “owned” the WPC and could therefore do as he wished. For the Durban Championships he told his circle to “throw Carl Smith’s ass out” if he stood in his way. On the contrary, the General Meeting ran quite well and a major proposal of Smith was unanimously welcomed for the sport.

During the Championships the standards were raised resulting in the disqualification of some of WPC’s top names. Now move to the Worlds in Blackpool, England, 1997. These saw a large number of participants. However, the seed of conflict had been planted and was further cultivated at these Championships. The actions of both competitors and some officials resulted in a further deterioration of the organisation. This was unfortunate, as the EPC had in April of that year hosted its most successful European Championships and the best Championships ever in Austria. The WPC was further developed in 1998.

The World Championships were hosted in Austria. Unfortunately the conflict of the previous year resulted in an ugly division in Great Britain. This was sad as it created a conflict between the two persons in Europe responsible for the growth and development of the federation, David Carter and Carl Smith. The 1998 Championships were the zenith of the WPC and reportedly the best Championships in the history of the sport. Those manipulating and being manipulated by Mr. Frantz attended the Championships and created further havoc ending in an irreparable division of the WPC.

The EPC, choosing to retain its integrity, made a final effort to salvage the WPC. Until the final international Championships of that year in Innsbruck, Austria, the forefront persons of the present-day WPC created a scenario behind the backs of the officials. These persons were then dismissed from the Austrian federation.

There is still a movement in Europe called WPC-Europe, in spite of documentation the WPC was in fact not a federation but rather a private corporate body. A leader of that grouping, writes officially for himself and the WPC leftovers on an anabolic steroid website, attacking the WPF and its leaders. His attacks are ignored by the sport’s official side as well as personally as they result from a complex of greed, jealousy, hatred and hunger for power and recognition. On the same site this person gives suggestions and regimens for steroids while publishing shirtless photos of himself. Although “lies have short legs” and most now know the truth behind his antics, irreparable international damage has been done to the sport. The official federations, WPF and IPF do not profit from such behaviour as the sport is viewed in a shady manner.

The WPF thanks those integral persons who support it and the sport in their positive manner.

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