That bushy beard well-known P.E.I. powerlifter George Kinch is sporting? It’s going as soon as the Canadian Strongman championships are over.
“This is my play-off beard,” he insists.
The Canadian championships are Sept 22 in Waterloo, Quebec, and Kinch, having missed out on first place in the Masters division by a point last year, is on that big final push.
He provided himself with some added clarity and motivation in winning the Pictou-North Colchester Exhibition strongman competition on Friday, beating out eight other competitors for the title. Kinch earned 24 out of a possible 27 points to finish a half a point ahead of Nova Scotian Dillon Fraser. Fraser has been a regular at the Prince County Exhibition’s Strongest Man in P.E.I. competition.
It was a good competition with a very supportive crowd, Kinch said, noting spectators were on their feet, cheering on all the participants. “Literally, you can get extra steps or extra reps, get a little extra out of yourself with the crowd behind you,” he reflected.
The powerlifting coach at Westisle, he said he is also inspired by how hard his students train.
Kinch won the first event in Pictou, the Farmers’ Walk by 37 feet, averaging six feet a second in the 60-second time limit with a pair of 200-pound weights. He finished fourth in the 220-point max reps log press and was the only competitor to shoulder an awkward field stone four times in the 60-second time limit during the third and final event. Four competitors, including Fraser, had tied for second in that event with three successful lifts.
His nephew, Mitch Kinch, placed fifth in Pictou.
“It’s good to go in and compete, and still compete at a high level at the age that I am,” he acknowledged
At 46, Kinch was the oldest competitor in Pictou by 14 years. Last year he finished third in Pictou. He feels his second-place finish at the Canadian Masters provided him with the motivation that allowed him to win Pictou this year.
“I think it was a good thing I didn’t win (at Nationals), because it drove me to train as hard as I did all year long.”
He shrugs off suggestions that strongman competitions are hard on the body. “Sitting on the couch doing nothing is harder on the body,” he counters.
“It’s good to do it and show my kids and other people that age is just a number,” he said.
“You pique, especially when you stop doing something; I’m going to try to continue on as long as I can,” he added.
He already knows the events that are on the schedule for nationals and is adjusting his workouts to train for them specifically.
George Kinch will be driving to Waterloo with Mitch Kinch who has qualified for the super heavyweight class at Nationals.
One of the goals George Kinch will be working on for next year is to establish a new record in Pictou for the farthest carry in the Farmers Walk.