Hafthor Bjornsson Wins 2018 Europe’s Strongest Man

After weeks of buildup — especially around the event’s log lift championship portion — the dust has settled on the 2018 Europe’s Strongest Man contest. And perhaps predictably, we have the event’s first-ever four-time champion: Hafthor Bjornsson.

The event in Leeds, England, concluded yesterday. After being tested in the Max Log, Axle Deadlift, Farmer’s Walk, Car Walk, and Atlas Stones, the podium finishers are as follows:

1. Hafthor Julius Bjornsson (Iceland)
2. Konstantine Janashia (Georgia)
3. Mateusz Kieliszkowski (Poland)

Legendary strongman competitor Zydrunas “Big Z” Savickas came in fourth place overall.

Bjornsson seemed in control the entire event, especially after reigning World’s Strongest Man Eddie Hall was sidelined from the full event due to a recent ankle injury. Along with several other competitors — including relative newcomer Cheick “Iron Biby” Sanou — Hall only competed in the Max Log event. Leading up to the event, many speculated the star-studded field could give the current record of 228kg a good challenge. While several athletes succeeded in lifting the 213kg log — including Sanou, Hall, and Bjornsson — no one was able to establish a new record at 230kg, though Hall came somewhat close on his final attempt. Hall entered the arena with heavy support around his injured ankle. Check out his last attempt, embedded below.

Bjornsson’s successful lift at 213kg established a new Icelandic record and marks a big milestone in the lift for the strongman in his competition prime.

With no true live stream, information for international fans was often tricky to come by. Several Reddit users, including Éloi Fournier, kept detailed public notes on attempts and events in order to help fans stay plugged into the action.

In the end, it was once again the Hafthor Bjornsson show in Leeds, giving the Icelandic giant a resounding just weeks before the World’s Strongest Man contest begins on April 28th.

Featured image: @andrimarinn and @thorspowergym on Instagram


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BarBend's Co-Founder and Editorial Director, David is a veteran of the health & fitness industry, with nearly a decade of experience building and running editorial teams in the space. He also serves as a color commentator for both National and International weightlifting competitions, many through USA Weightlifting. David graduated from Harvard University and served for several years as Editorial Director/Chief Content Officer of Greatist.com. In addition to his work in the health & fitness industry, David has been a writer for Fortune and Fortune.com, as well as a contributor to Forbes.com, Slate, and numerous other outlets across the web and in print. He's especially passionate about the intersection of strength sports and quality, professional media coverage — overlapping interests shared by the BarBend editorial team and which drive their content strategy each and every day. David is a proud Kentucky native. In his free time, David is a voiceover actor and can be heard in animated films, independent shorts, music videos, commercials, and podcasts.