In 2021, Lucy Underdown set a record by becoming the first woman to deadlift 300 kilograms (661.4 pounds) in a contest setting. Over the following years, she proceeded to make her mark in strongwoman contests, including multiple podium placings in the UK’s Strongest Woman competition (2021-2023) and a victory at the 2023 Official Strongman Games (OSG) European Championship to become Europe’s Strongest Woman.
Her latest record-setting performance during the 2023 World Deadlift Championship (WDC) should have been no surprise to anyone following her trajectory in the strength sport. Underdown became the first woman to deadlift 318 kilograms (700 pounds).
The World Deadlift Championship took place as an adjunct competition during the 2023 Giants Live World Open (GLWO). While some athletes only participated in the WDC, athletes in both contests performed the deadlift in progressively heavier rounds and scores from the WDC-only competitors did not affect athlete rankings in the GLWO.
Underdown completed the deadlift using only a pair of lifting straps for support. While a lifting suit was allowed under strongman rules, she opted against using one and relied on her own pulling power.
With her latest World Record, Underdown broke her own deadlift record of 305 kilograms (672 pounds) set during the 2023 UK’s Strongest Woman contest in May. The 318-kilogram (700-pound) deadlift is officially the heaviest deadlift pulled in competition by a female strength athlete in either strongwoman or powerlifting.
While competitive powerlifters are not allowed to use lifting straps, the heaviest deadlift in a suit belongs to Becca Swanson who pulled 314.9 kilograms (694.4 pounds) during the 2005 World Powerlifting Congress (WPC) WPO European Semi Finals.
The Rest of the Competition
Aside from Underdown’s continued deadlifting dominance, the WDC and GLWO delivered on other fronts. In the men’s deadlift competition, Graham Hicks came out victorious with a massive 470-kilogram (1,036.1-pound) pull.
Hicks’ winning deadlift didn’t set a World Record or capture the Giants Live standing offer of $50,000 to anyone completing a 505-kilogram (1,113.3-pound) deadlift. However, his performance still bested fellow strongmen including 2022 WDC champion Rauno Heinla and Ivan Makarov — both of whom peaked at 455 kilograms (1,003.1 pounds) during the competition.
The primary contest — the 2023 Giants Live World Open — was won by Evan “T-Rex” Singleton. It was his second GLWO title, having previously won in 2021. It is also his second contest win of the 2023 competitive season, adding to his victory at the 2023 Giants Live Strongman Classic in July.
Underdown’s Next Step
After claiming yet another record, Underdown hasn’t officially announced her next competitive plans. However, in a recap posted to her Instagram following the contest, Underdown made it clear she’s not taking her continued excellence lightly.
“I started this journey [five] years ago and I never thought I’d get this far! But I’ve got much more to give! … I’m strong. I’ve always been strong and I work really [expletive] hard! I love this sport and I can’t wait to help pave the way for the women!!”
Featured Image: @lucyunders_strongwoman / Instagram