Competed in 1985 Over The Top Regional Championships (Denver).
1976 WPAA World Championships - 4th.
1979 AWI World Pro Championships - 4th.
1980 AWI World Pro Championships - 4th.
12 time CO #1 Overall Champion (2nd All-time)
12 Years undefeated in CO (2nd All-time).
Heaviest bench press (600 lbs).
Ranked #1 WPAA Colorado - 219#, 220+#.
Ranked top 10 in the US. (WPAA).
Ranked top 10 in North America (WPAA).
CO All-time Team: 1990, 2000, 2010.
1976 Colorado Armwrestler of the Year.
1980 Colorado Armwrestler of the Year.
Dennis Yaklich, Larry Telea,
More about Steve
"My most memorable match was at the World Championships in Las Vegas with a former World Champion. The match lasted a long time and resulted in a chipped bone in my elbow. Dennis Yaklich from Pueblo was my toughest opponent. He was one of the strongest men I have ever seen." "I started competing in power lifting in 1975 and entered the 220# novice class taking second place. I vowed never to lose again. Shortly after, I competed in the 242# class and won every meet and took outstanding lifter at every contest. My goal was to set the World Record in the bench press and win the World Armwrestling Championships. I was ranked in the top 5 in the World in Powerlifting for about 3 years along with Jon Cole and a few others. In 1980 I attempted to set the World bench press record at the Senior Nationals which was 573#. I successfully lifted 578# but was called for moving my head. Years later, attempting a 605# bench press at Gold's Gym in Denver, I tore my pectoral muscle and ended my Powerlifting and Armwrestling career." Set state power lifting record at 565# bench, 780# squat, 760# deadlift.
1996 Des Gronwald
Competed: 1982 - 1987, 2010 - 2013.
Ft. Lupton, Colorado.
States: (4) CO, CA, NM, TX.
Check out Des competing at the 1987 WPAA Rocky Mountain Regionals............
Clay promoted and refereed for many years with the Colorado Armwrestling Association and was a representative and referee for the WPAA. He put Armwrestling tournaments on for outreach programs in Federal prisons. From Clay: " My first tourney was the 1977 WPAA Rocky Mountain Regionals at the Northglenn Mall. I didn't place and tore my arm up pretty good but I couldn't wait until the next tournament. I trained with two different tables (one with a pulley with weights and one with tension springs). I practiced with my 5 brothers every chance I got.....especially my brothers Clint and Carey who competed for many years. I have competed in many great tourneys through the years.....the WPAA Tri-State Regionals in Farmington, NM were great competitions with many states represented. The 1985 Over The Top Regional qualifier in Denver was one of the most stacked competitions I have ever been to. I was eliminated in a long match with Dave Patton who was one of the strongest men I have ever pulled against. The Texas State Championship was one of my all time favorites.....it was fun taking out the different Texas team members in my weight class. All of the different TX teams had matching shirts and were not at all happy about the CO guy beating them. The WPAA World's in New Orleans was also one of the best events I have ever pulled at. I finished top 8 and secured a spot on the 1984 WPAA North American Team which was a true honor. The Colorado tourneys were always loaded with a lot of top competition. I had some great matches with Kevin Fanger and Dwight Collins who were my toughest opponents. Before I got into the sport I played a lot of baseball and softball for many years. I started my company, Ctech in 2004 which makes custom injection molding. Now that I am retired from Armwrestling I spend my time playing softball, hunting, fishing, and working on my hot rods."
1998 Casey keyes
City/State: Ordway, Colorado.
States: (3) CO, NM, KS.
Check out Casey competing at the 1990 WPAA Rocky Mtn Regionals.......
7-time World Police/Fire Finalist (4 Gold, 3 Silver).
Ranked #1 CO WPAA - 193#, 219#.
Colorado All-time Team - 1990.
2010 Comeback Armwrestler of the Year.
More About Casey
"I work as a Prison Guard at Arkansas Valley Correctional Facility in Crowley, CO. I have been pulling all my life in one way or another starting with armwrestling other kids and even coaches in school and then as a bartender working in bars in the 70's. My first organized match was 1977, or 1978 in Sharon Springs, Kansas, which I won and then I broke my arm in 1980 armwresting against Mike Moss in a tournament in Idaho Springs, CO. I did not wrestle again untill 1988 in the WPAA Rocky Mountain Regional Championships from '88 - '93, I placed 1st and/or 2nd each year but do not recall which place which years and since I jumped from middle to light heavy I'm not sure of the classes. My most memorable matches were against (Bad) Brad Balderston, also Clay Stadler who I was always impressed with for his technique and sportmanship, the one year I wrestled Clay I think he jumped up into my class since I was heavier than him, I won but believe me I did not take him lightly. I also had the honor of getting to know Mel Terry but never put my arm up against him since we where in different weight classes. (Thank Goodness!!!)"
1999 Kevin Fanger
City/State: Erie, Colorado.
States: (4) CO, MO, NV, CA.
Check out Kevin competing at the 1987 WPAA Rocky Mountain Regionals............
(CA) 1993 Universal Studios International Championship - 4th.
(CA) 1997 World Wristwrestling Championship - 3rd.
(NV) 2004 Ultimate Vegas International Master's Champion.
CO All-time Team (1990, 2000, 2010,).
Ranked #1 CO WPAA (169#, 193#, 219#, 220+#)
Ranked #1 CO WAF (176#, 187#, 198#, 220#, 242#, 243+.) Tied for 2nd All-time.
4-time CO #1 Overall Champion. (1991, 1992, 1993, 1994).
3-time CO Armwrestler of the Year. (1992, 1994, 1995).
Ranked in the top 10 in the US. (WPAA)
7-time WPAA Rocky Mountain Regional Champion. (Tied for 3rd All-time)
7-time CO State Champion. (Tied for 3rd All-time)
4-time AAA Yukon Jack Regional Champion. (Record)
State Champion in 6 different states (CO, WY, MO, SD, IA, NE) (Tied for 3rd All-time)
Chris Anderson, Pat Beare, Travis Berggren, Robert Baxter, Chris Chandler, Larry Dodge, Greg Fanger, Kevin Fanger, Lonnie Fisher, Matt Girdner, Rodney Gregg, Spencer Graves, Dwayne Hanel, Kevin Harris, Chuck Kendricks, Casey Keyes, Don McClary, Sterling Miles, Kody Merrit, Tom New, Jamie Petrich, Paul Rosas, Brent Rogge, Dean Sain, Rich Simpson, Tony Piccholdi, Arnie Teunissen, Mel Terry, Jason Vale, Emlyn Williams, Billy Weise,
2007 Emlyn Williams
Location: Castle Rock, CO.
States: (11) AZ, CO, WY, OH, NV, CA, ID, GA, IL, MO, NM.
Countries: (2) USA, Curacao.
Check out Emlyn's HOF video and Emlyn competing at the 1990 WPAA Rocky Mtn Regionals...........
Andy Authier, Mike Apodaca, Brad Balderston, Devin Bair, Travis Berggren, Simon Berriochoa, Sylvio Borque(Canada), Bob Brown, Chris Chandler, Shawn Dempsey, Bob Easter, Lane Facer, Ed Goble, Greg Fanger, Kevin Fanger, Chris Gobby, Kevin Harris, Dwayne Hanel, Tony Kitowski, Chris Kaufman, Corey Miller, Trenton Meyer, Mike McGraw, Tom New, Keith Powers, Eric Peterson, Cobra Rhodes, Paul Rosas, Russ Stark, Mike Selearis, Rich Simpson, Kimon Schneider(Switzerland), James Smith, Dean Sain, Eric Wolfe.
More About Emlyn
How did you train for Armwrestling?: Weight training and table time with my buds Rich Simpson, Matt Girdner, Brad Balderston, and Jeff Ames.
Favorite technique?: Top Roll.
Most memorable match?: Left hand loss to Rich Simpson in the Overall at the 1999 CO State Championship. Right hand win in the final of the 2002 USAF National Championship against James Smith.
What weight classes did you pull?: WAF - 176#, 187#, 198#. WPAA - 169#, 193#.
Toughest opponent?: Chris Chandler.
First tournament and how did you place?: 1986 WPAA Rocky Mountain Regional's at Buckingham Square Mall in Aurora. Placed top 8. Eliminated by Kevin Fanger.
Unique fact?: I was lucky enough to be able to pull in all the big tournaments that I knew of during my career.
Occupation?: I work for Pepperidge. I own my own route.
Hobbies?: Before Armwrestling I raced Motocross. I work out 4 days a week and spend as much time as possible with my two kids.
Biggest Armwrestling accomplishment?: Winning the 2002 USAF National Championship in MO.
Best advice?: Don't let the moment overwhelm you.
Biggest obstacle faced?: Trying to be the best Dad I can be.
Other notables in the sport or anything else you would like to say?: I was lucky to have turned Pro in Motocross when I was 17.
2008 Matt Girdner
Location: Parker, CO.
States: (17) AR, CO, CT, HI, NV, ID, WY, NE, MO, CA, IL, IA, GA, SD, NM, OH, KS.
Countries: USA, Poland.
Check out Matt's HOF video and Matt competing at the 2004 Zloty Tur International Championship.....
1997 (CA) World Wristwrestling Championship - 3rd.
1998 (ID) AAA Main Event International Champion. (242)
2003 (GA) GNC International Championship - 3rd. (243+)
2004 (NV) PAC Ultimate Vegas International Champion. (243+)
2004 (Poland) Zloty Tur International Finalist (2nd/3rd) (243+)
2005 (NV) PAC Ultimate Vegas International Champion. (243+)
2005 (CT) PAC Mohegan Sun International Championship - 3rd. (243+)
2014 (CA) UAL 8 International Championship - 4th. (243+)
2002 (IL/USA) WAF World Championship Silver Medalist. (242)
2018 (NM) NM State 243+ Round Robin Finalist.
The most dominant Armwrestler in Colorado history.
Ranked #1 in CO (198#, 220#, 242#, 243+#)
Ranked Top 10 in the US. (WAF)
Ranked Top 10 in North America. (WAF)
Ranked Top 10 in the World. (WAF)
Ranked #2 Overall in the World. (Pulling John website 2004)
Ranked top 10 Greatest Heavyweights of All Time. (World of Armwrestling website.)
Pro Armwrestling Hall of Fame. (Merle Meeter/Denise Wattles)
Featured in the movie "Pulling John".
Appeared on the "Best Damn Sports Show" winning the 2005 Ultimate Vegas International Championship.
14 top 4 finishes at the National Championships (AAA, USAA, USAF) - 2nd All-time in Men's division.
13 top 3 finishes at the National Championships (AAA, USAA, USAF) - Tied with Brent Norris 1st All-time in Men's division.
11 top 2 finishes at the National Championships (AAA, USAA, USAF) Men's Colorado record.
9-time National Champion. (USAA/USAF/AAA) - Men's Colorado record.
13-time CO #1 Overall Champion. (record) (1995-2005, 2014, 2015)
National titles in 3 organizations (record tied with Margie Ciaccio and Emlyn Williams)
Undefeated in CO 13 years (record) 1995-2005, 2014, 2015.
2014 Comeback Armwrestler of the Year.
Colorado All-time Team. (2000, 2010)
7-time Colorado Armwrestler of the Year - 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2015. (record)
John Brzenk, Travis Bagent, Ron Bath, Ryan Espy, Allen Ferreira, Mike Gould, Ibragim Ibragimov, Matt Kingsporn, Tom Nelson, Steve Phipps, John Ruggerio, Alexey Semerenco, Bob Shaffer, Buzz Sullzan, Michael Todd, Robbie Topie, Don Underwood, Dan Victor, Eric Woelfel, Wayne Withers, Craig Wirth, Paul Walther, Nick Zinna.
More about Matt
Favorite training technique: “Hand and wrist work.”
Favorite technique: "Hook Drag."
Most memorable match: "Loosing to Marcio Barbosa at Worlds".
Tournament/accomplishment you are most proud of: "Watching my kids arm-wrestle."
Toughest opponent: "Alexey Voevoda, never beat him."
First tournament and how did you place: "Hawaii. 1st place."
Unique fact: “I’m very humble. I don’t do a lot of talking. Just train my head off, get to the table and pull every match as if my life depends on it.”
Biggest Armwrestling accomplishment: “Beating Travis Bagent, Ron Bath, and John Brzenk.”
Best advice: “Never quit.”
Biggest obstacle faced: “My self-confidence. Get up, get to the gym, and keep training. Finish!”
Other notables in the sport or anything else you would like to say: "Thanks to everyone that helped me achieve so much. Brad, well I should say the entire Balderston family, lots of road trips!, Brad,Emlyn Williams, Rich Simpson, Neil Bell, ......I know that I am forgetting some names , but thanks to all!
2010 Rich Simpson
Location: Thornton, CO.
States (13) CA, CO, ID, IL, KS, MO, NM, NV, NE, ND, OH, SD, WY.
Kevin Bongard, Robert Baxter, Brad Balderston, David Bieler, Bob Brown, Travis Berggren, Chris Chandler, Bob Easter, Ron Ermini, Chris Futhey, Don Fritche, Lane Facer, Scott Flemming, Ed Goble, Matt Girdner, Spencer Graves, Ryan Hutchings, Kenny Hughes, Kayne Hemsing, Dwayne Hanel, Chris Kaufman, Matt Klingsporn, Sonny Larson, Scott Lohmann, Scott Partington, Lance Pentland, Eric Peterson, Keith Powers, Steve Rau, Dean Sain, Russ Stark, James Smith, Jeff Thomcheson, Michael Todd, Tony Villa, Eric Wolfe.
USAA, Colorado ArmSports, Mile High ArmSports, New Mexico ArmSports.
More About Rich
First tournament and how did you place? - 1988 WPAA Rocky Mountain Regionals. I won 2 matches. (One against Cary Stadler who was one of the best middleweights in the state at that time).
Hobbies? - Golf, Hunting, Camping, Drag Racing.
What weight classes did you pull? 198# and 220#.
What did you do for training? - A little gym, a little table-time, a little pulley.
Most memorable match? - Dwayne Hanel at the 2000 USAA Wyoming State Championship. The match lasted 2 minutes, 30 seconds.
Toughest opponent? - Emlyn Williams.
Tourney win you are most proud of? - 1997 AAA Colorado State Championship pulling "Bad" Brad Balderston in the finals.
Anything else you would like to say? - I pulled for over 10 years before I won my first Colorado State title, now I am tied with Emlyn Williams with a record 10 Colorado State titles. I am also very proud to be part of Team Colorado.
First tourney and how did you place? My first tournament was actually in Albuquerque in 1980 when I was 14 at a mall. I entered with my brothers and I was the only one who went to finals. I won over adult women twice my size. There was no weight class.
Most memorable match or tourney?: It was at a restaurant probably about a year into my adult arm wrestling journey. My final opponent of the evening easily outweighed me by 30 lbs and was much taller, and she had a reputation for breaking arms. My family including my daughter was with me and was crying not wanting me to wrestle. Now of course I had to win twice so that was kind of traumatic. It turned out that I did win both matches and my family went wild!! I also met my husband there that night. We divorced many years later but that night was a great night.
Toughest opponent?: See last question. She was tough. I don’t remember her name.
Favorite technique?: Mental technique: dressing in tight, kind of girly outfits. This seemed to make my opponents think I was whimpy. Physical technique: being fast.
What did you do for training?: I did some weightlifting and I had a table to train on. My daughter, from time to time, would bring her high school guy friends over for me to practice with. They stopped coming after awhile. Ha ha ha
Before Armwrestling?: No sports but always active.
Occupation?: I am a graphic designer and fine artist.
Anything else you would like to say?: I have been invited to participate at a “meet a professional” day representing the sport of arm wrestling at our local YMCA this summer. I’m proud to have been an arm wrestler despite the naive thinking most people have about the sport.
2017 Rick Cisneros
City/State: Denver, Colorado.
States: (9) CO, NE, WY, NV, AR, UT, ND, NM, AZ.
Countries: USA, Finland.
Check out Rick HOF announcement on Facebook........
Refereed in multiple National Championships for the USAF & USAA.
2000 USAF National Championship Finalist.
Represented Team USA at the 2000 WAF World Championship in Finland.
2003 USAF National Champiionship - 4th.
2006 USAF National Championship Finalist.
2006 Reno Reunion Pro/Am Finalist.
2007 Reno Reunion Pro/Am Finalist.
2007 USAF National Championship - 3rd.
2010 World Police & Fire International Finalist.
First Senior WAF refereee in Colorado history.
Refereed at multiple USAF National Championships.
Refereed at the USAA National Championships.
Refereed in a record 11 different organizations (Mile High ArmSports, Colorado ArmSports, New Mexico ArmSports, West Texas ArmSports, United States Armwrestling Association, United States Armwrestling Federation, World Professional Armwrestling Association, American ArmSports Association, National Armwrestling league, Ultimate Armwrestling League, World Armwrestling League.)
More about Rick
Rick is a decorated veteran of the United States Navy, a 25 year decorated veteran of the Aurora Police Department, and is the owner of Ricky Bobby BBQ. Rick has been Co-director of Colorado ArmSports and Mile High ArmSports and head referee in 2001. He has brought in numerous sponsors and new hosts and helped promote over 100 MHA events in 4 different states. From Rick:...."I started arm wrestling while I was in the Navy overseas on a WESTPAC cruise in pubs and bars 1976. I came home and continued to arm wrestle in Lyons Colorado in bars with very little structure and rules. My hobbies are sculpting wood, wood working, Drag racing, metal car art, 4x4 my 1972 Blazer, snowmobiling, ATVing, river fishing, yard work and gardening (my quiet place), air brushing helmets and vehicles, pen and ink drawing, pencil drawing just to name a few. My most memorable puller to referee was Travis Bagent…. loud, funny, gets in his opponents head, smack talker…… and believe it or not has been very respectful towards me. Most memorable MHA tourney….tough one. There were many. The tourney in Lyons Colorado. Murphy’s Law came into effect. “What can go wrong will go wrong and at the worst possible moment.” I almost quit the sport and I had to do a lot of soul searching to keep my composure and continue to referee. That was a bad one. On the good side there were plenty. Southern Colorado tournaments in Alamosa were always fun. Lots of heavy weights and an all around good competition. Most proud of…. Becoming a Senior WAF Referee, Colorado Armwrestling Hall Of Fame inductee, and representing Team USA at the WAF World Championships in Finland. Of all the pullers I have met and refereed, one thing is certain, their commitment to the sport, their competitive nature and respect they have in themselves as well as their family is second to none. Good, honest people. Having said that, all of the men, women and kids in this sport has made me a better man."
2018 Brandy Stark
Location: Manitou Springs, CO.
States: (12) CO, MO, NV, FL, UT, SD, ID, CT, CA, NM, IL, VT.
Check out Brandy's HOF announcement on Facebook......
(OH) 2007 Competed at USAA Arnold Classic Championship.
(CO) 2010 MHA World Police/Fire Megamatch Finalist.
(CA) 2011 Competed at UAL 2 Championship.
(CA) 2014 Competed at UAL 8 Championship.
(CO) 2006 MHA Colorado State Supermatch Champion (Kevin Harris)
(CA) 2015 WAL CA State Supermatch Champion (Jake Smith)
2005 Colorado Rookie of the Year.
2-time CO Men's #1 Overall Champion (2008, 2011).
Ranked #1 CO - 198#, 220#, 242#, 243+#.
Colorado All-Time Team (2010).
Co-Director, Colorado ArmSports 2004, 2005, 2006.
Co-Director, WPAA Rocky Mountain Regionals 2006.
Co-Host, 2006 USAF National Championship (Denver).
Co-Director, 2005 Workout West Challenge with over 100 kids/teens entries. (One of the largest in US history.)
Emlyn Williams, Rich Simpson, Bill Ballinger, Kevin Harris, Mike West, Justin Mynatt, Corey Miller, Jake Smith, Gaylon Russell, Chris Kaufman, Justin Kaufman, Travis Berggren, Mark Clay, Larry Ermini, Jason Perrin, Robbie Burnett, Doug Allen, Jamie Sheldon, Randy Weaver, Steven Green,