Tamara Walcott and Kent Fleming Announce the Launch of APC Walcott Wreckers

Powerlifter and strongwoman Tamara Walcott has been one of the biggest names in strength sports in recent years. Her impact has been felt on and off the platform.

Walcott is the all-time raw deadlift and total world record holder and has been active in strongwoman competitions. Now that she has reached world-class heights in strength sports, she wants to do the same for strength sports.

Kent Fleming has been a major player in the powerlifting world as an athlete and coach. He was the third man to squat 1,000 pounds raw and is the new owner of the American Powerlifting Coalition (APC). He has the same personal mission as Walcott: help the sport grow and provide a new stage for athletes to showcase their strength.

Fleming and Walcott have joined forces to host the inaugural Walcott Wreckers event, which blends powerlifting and strongman/woman events. This new contest’s debut is scheduled for Aug. 31, 2024, in Omaha, NE. It will feature raw powerlifting for amateurs and professionals and include strongman elements.

Walcott and Fleming joined BarBend to share why fans and athletes should make this event part of their calendars and their visions to grow the sport.

[Related: How To Watch The 2024 APF Asian Equipped Powerlifting Championships]

Editor’s note: the following interview has been lightly edited for readability.

BarBend: Why start promoting and organizing events?

Fleming: I’ve been in the sport since 2009. Powerlifting is so important to me. I love what it does and how it inspires people.

I’ve been coaching for over 10 years. I remember squatting 1,000 pounds; I felt like, “That was it?” I want to make lifters feel more special. Now that I am in this position, I want to make these individuals feel like they have accomplished something.

We’re taking the core values that the previous owners of the APC had to a new level. That is how the partnership with Tamara came into play.

Walcott: When I first got into this sport, I was training and working my butt off for 12 to 18 weeks for these events. I was breaking ground and records; when I broke the all-time raw world record, I thought to myself, “If cornhole and marble games can be on ESPN, so can powerlifting.”

However, I shouldn’t be the only one getting the sponsorships. I was standing there at that moment (after breaking the record) for all the little boys and girls who looked like me and thought they were plus-sized and not strong.

As a mom of two in my 30s, I think anybody can do this. I wanted to be in a position to create a stage so others could come to do this as well.

BarBend: Walcott Wreckers will feature elements of powerlifting and strongman. What will that look like?

Walcott: I am the driving factor for throwing the strongman element into it. Even after a full competition with only 30 days to prepare and my coach passing away, I was bitten by the bug.

We are putting the Sasquatch bar into the mix; it will be the last pull of the day in the competition. There will be the usual competition, but we are adding elements that the powerlifting community is not used to.

Pros will squat, bench press, and deadlift, but things will be in between. I will try to break two records: the deadlift and the Sasquatch bar. We will invite other strongman athletes to attempt as well.

BarBend: Amateurs will have an even better incentive. Care to explain?

Walcott: Yes, we are paying the winning amateurs. Champions will receive prize money. We are trying to pull new sponsors into this that don’t usually sponsor powerlifting events; big corporate America groups. We want to bring people…into the sport.

BarBend: Have you leaned on other promoters or organizers for guidance.

Fleming: I come from the Big Iron lineage. I’ve been around so many world record holders; Scott Nutter and Donnie Thompson. I’ve wrapped for guys at these meets and learned so much. I’ve eaten with them, picked their brains, watched them move at their events, and I plan on taking all of that and putting it into the APC.

BarBend: Has there been any consideration for future events after Walcott Wreckers?

Walcott: Walcott Wreckers will be annual. I want to create a space where athletes feel like WNBA or NBA players when they compete. Kent and I want this to be the WWE of powerlifting; the driving force making the sport bigger and grander.

Fleming: There will be more announcements about that at a future date, especially on the youth side with high school students.

BarBend: What are the long-term goals for Walcott Wreckers?

Walcott: I remember breaking the world record and getting a check for it, which I didn’t expect. That was a great feeling. I want others to feel that.

At the end of the day, I want this event to be about the lifters. Kent and my visions align: this needs to be about and for them. I want to share this stage with as many people as I can.

Right now, someone is in a garage pulling 700 pounds. We need to give them a big stage to do that on. Why not offer that platform and give them a chance to make money, too? Kent and I will create what we both want to see in the sport.

BarBend: You’ve mentioned bringing new eyes to the sport. What should fans and potential viewers know about Walcott Wreckers?

Walcott: I first got into the sport as someone’s mom in the Virgin Islands; I knew nothing about powerlifting. I realized that I wasn’t strong and big for nothing.

This could be how they get introduced to the sport and change their lives. I want people to tune into or come to this event knowing we care about them. We want them to come back here knowing they will be treated well from the warm-up room to the platform. We want them training hard and plan to make this one of the events they do every year. 

Fleming: I bombed my first meet because of the pressure. As I got into coaching, I could see the nerves coming through with the amateurs because this was so important to them.

Now that I have my organization and can impact the sport from this side, I want to provide a comfortable stage; affirming and encouraging. That is going to be a big part of the APC.

BarBend: Where can fans learn more about and follow Walcott Wreckers as it nears?

Walcott: @walcottwreckers on Instagram. Fans can also go to www.walcottwreckers.com. Tickets can be purchased online as well

Fleming: Athletes and fans can also check out the APC website and follow me on Instagram @big_kent_fleming.

Featured Images: @walcottwreckers on Instagram 

The post Tamara Walcott and Kent Fleming Announce the Launch of APC Walcott Wreckers appeared first on BarBend.


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