Perkins used all three of his squat attempts to rewrite the record books.
On May 20, 2023, during the 2023 USA Powerlifting (USAPL) P3 Grand Prix, powerlifter Austin Perkins scored a 305-kilogram (672.4-pound) raw back squat. The mark is an all-time raw World Record in Perkins’ 75-kilogram competitive weight class, officially surpassing his peer Taylor Atwood by two kilograms (4.4 pounds). According to Open PowerliftingAtwood achieved the past raw record squat mark of 303 kilograms (668 pounds) in the 75-kilogram division at the 2021 USAPL Raw Nationals.
Perkins wore a lifting belt and utilized wrist wraps and knee sleeves — which still qualifies as raw in a sanctioned powerlifting context — to help achieve his record mark.
In a caption of one of Perkins’ recent Instagram posts, he recaps what went into attaining his raw World Record squat. The athlete steadily built up towards the achievement through his meet performance and needed all three attempts to break the new boundary after a 280-kilogram (617.4-pound) first squat and a 295-kilogram (650-pound) second squat.
Perkins wrote that after a personally disappointing performance at the 2022 USAPL Virginia Pro in December 2022 (a contest he still won in the raw 75-kilogram class), he was motivated to improve the depth of his squats. He also made a grip adjustment, placing his hands wider and getting his barbell in a lower position so the athlete could enjoy more of a “vertical” squat.
Here’s an overview of Perkins’ top stats at the 2023 USAPL P3 Grand Prix. In addition to his World Record squat, the athlete notably scored all-time raw competition bests on his bench press (195 kilograms/429.9 pounds), deadlift (325 kilograms/716.5 pounds), and total (825 kilograms/1,818.8 pounds).
Austin Perkins (75KG) | 2023 USAPL P3 Grand Prix Top Stats
- Squat — 305-kilogram (672.4-pound) | All-Time Raw World Record
- Bench Press — 195 kilograms (429.9 pounds) | All-Time Raw Competition Best
- Deadlift — 325 kilograms (716.5 pounds) | All-Time Raw Competition Best
- Total — 825 kilograms (1,818.8 pounds) | All-Time Raw Competition Best
Note: At the time of this writing, Perkins’ record squat mark is official but has not yet been reflected in databases like Open Powerlifting.
Even with a new World Record and all the work he put into it, Perkins didn’t seem satisfied with his closing note. If anything, he characterized this specific meeting as something that might be just the beginning. The powerlifter appeared to tease his next competitive appearance at the 2023 USAPL Equipped Nationals on June 17, 2023, in Dallas, TX.
Perkins was the 75-kilogram runner-up in his last Equipped Nationals berth in 2021. His tenor made it seem he was dead set on a victory this time around.
“To cap things off, this was the most confident on a squat I had ever been,” Perkins wrote of his raw World Record squat. “There weren’t any unknown variables come meet day which I loved. We went in and hit numbers we knew were going to be easy enough. [I’m] following the same protocol for Nats [the 2023 USAPL Equipped Nationals]. Can’t wait to see what we do when we’re actually pushing limits.”
Featured image: @the75KG on Instagram