Author Topic: Wag Bennet: the embassador of bodybuilding  (Read 8688 times)

Offline Sergio

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Wag Bennet: the embassador of bodybuilding
« on: November 26, 2012, 09:17:48 PM »
Mr. Ambassador - A Tribute to Wag Bennett, Maestro of Bodybuilding
 
Few men can come close to the practical involvement, knowledge, expertise and sheer love of the game possessed by Wayne (Wag) Bennett. Wag has known personally every physique star and personality of note over the last six decades. His gyms and homes were visited by all the famous bodybuilders and strength athletes. A list would be a complete A to Z of the iron game.

A prime example of his influence on our sport must be his and ex-wife Dianne's altering the course of bodybuilding history when they, through sheer serendipity, became surrogate parents back in 1966 to an unknown young Austrian muscle builder who arrived on their doorstep in Forest Gate, East London. This weary youth, clothed in an old, ill-fitting corduroy suit and looking, as Dianne recalls, like Li'l Abner from the comics, introduced himself in a thick Austrian accent as one "Arnold Schwarzenegger." Through the Bennetts' benevolence he made his home with them for four years or more, usually sleeping on their sofa. He fitted in "quite nicely thank you" with Wag and Dianne's six children-Jayne, Scott, Luke, Clair, Grant and Leigh.

One of the saddest letters I have ever received was from a distressed Wag, apologizing for his tardy reply to a note of mine and telling me: "At the moment I am in a complete daze. My most beloved daughter, Leigh, came home from California on Christmas Day (1978) as a surprise for me and three days later died in my arms. Wag." Soon after, in her muscle journal Body power, Dianne Bennett published a beautiful, moving essay called "Peace" that Leigh had written. She died of an asthma attack precipitated by a prescribed medical treatment.

Arnold's granite profile was to become the most recognized image in the world through his muscle and movie fame. He has always remained close friends with Wag and Dianne, generously repaying their kindness in various ways. He once bought Wag an E-type Jaguar sports car, a.k.a. "Wag's Jag." Through his huge range of connections Wag has met and associated with many world-famous names from pop star idols to politicians, including Arnold's in-laws, the Kennedy clan.

Wag's background business life and source of income was his well-known cycle and motor engineering company at 85 Silvertown Way, Victoria Docks, London, but the love-nay, almost magnificent obsession-of his life, apart from his close family, has always been his gyms and weight training. He was featured in early issues of Health &: Strength and Henry Atkins's quality magazine, BodyCulture. Even then he used impressive poundages when posing for exercise illustrations. Wag competed in and won the Mr. South Britain 1952 and was a finalist in the '52 Mr. Britain. The same year (1952) he moved south to Portsmouth, training under Bob Woolgar's guidance. Later he ran one of Bob's gyms.

In the early '50s Wag Bennett and Mr. Universe Reg Park were the only two men in UK capable of bench pressing 400 pounds. Both Reg and Wag pushed the power and made the magic 500-pound bench-press mark. Wag admitted his style was "a little loose," but remember there were no bench-press suits in those days.

Wag has trained with weights all his life. At his peak he weighed 203 pounds at 5'11" with a 51-inch chest and arms and neck over 18 inches. His powerful thighs were 27 inches. Wag always considered squats the most essential exercise in any bodybuilding or powerlifting program.

Wayne, known the world over as "Wag," married Dianne Woolgar, daughter of Bob and Vina Woolgar, in 1964. When he returned to London, his renowned address was 335 Romford Road or "free feree five" as Arnold used to say. During his long and illustrious career Wag has been involved and participated in every aspect of the iron/bodybuilding game as coach, competitor, title holder, power man, gym owner, judge, official, author and magazine publisher.

The British magazine Peak was Wag's baby. For its premier issue in May 1969 the honor of cover man went to his friend, Rick Wayne, then Mr. World. The publication boasted an impressive list of international contributors. Despite frustrations and setbacks Wag always held p.c. above politics, although at times even he had difficulty avoiding the petty squabbles among the various factions and associations. Whomever he supported, however, he did so with 100 percent enthusiasm and drive.

Wag was active in the Health & Strength League and NABBA. He organized the Bodybuilders International Guild, a.k.a. BIG, at the same time as Peak mag and BABBA, a British amateur federation. He strongly supported the IFBB, eventually becoming president for UK, and then EFBB, the English branch. His protein product, Pinnacle, was a pioneering tasty food supplement, enthusiastically endorsed by Arnold Strong. Even I got results with it!

Along with Dianne, Wag literally traveled the world on behalf of the IFBB and its ever-expanding empire. As the decades rolled by, he continued to serve physical culture. His and Dianne's contribution to bodybuilding was rightfully recognized and honored by the OHF Awards Hall of Fame in March 2002 in London. All accolades were well and truly deserved. I enjoyed the honor of being with him that day. Wag Bennett, Mr. Ambassador of Body-building, we salute you!
 
From http://www.fitflex.com/wag-bennett-bodybuilding.html

Offline Sergio

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Re: Wag Bennet: the embassador of bodybuilding
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2012, 09:26:00 AM »
The Wag's gym was phantastic!! Incredible. The union of old trasining style and dozen of machines also. 
Look here:
http://www.seemydomain.com/wagbennett/
« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 01:28:06 PM by Sergio »

Offline Sergio

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Re: Wag Bennet: the embassador of bodybuilding
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2016, 05:18:00 PM »
Right corner, below. You can read: the first Man in england to press 500 lbs. I don't remember when Hepburn (from Canada) did it, but it's strange that Reg Park was a friend of Weg and he always said he was the second Man after Hepburn. Anyway, it's not the first time I read it.

Offline Sergio

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Re: Wag Bennet: the embassador of bodybuilding
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2016, 01:44:02 PM »
With Reg Park, late years