Many people who follow the sport of strongman have missed the Arnold Strongman Classic. Fans weren’t permitted to attend the 2020 contest, won by Hafthor Björnsson, due to Ohio officials placing restrictions at the beginning of the pandemic. The contest in 2021 was canceled altogether.
This contest will return in 2022, and it’s scheduled to take place during the weekend of Mar. 4-5, 2022 in Columbus, OH. Organizers released the list of individual events that the athletes will compete in on Dec. 24, 2021, on Instagram.
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- Max Barbell Squat
- 275-Pound Monster Dumbbell Press
- Austrian Oak Log Press for Max
- Timber Frame Carry
- Stone to Shoulder for Reps
Day 1 — Friday, Mar. 4, 2022
Day one will feature one new event and one that’s more familiar to ASC fans and athletes.
Max Barbell Squat
This is a new event for the ASC, and it’s similar to what fans would see in powerlifting. There will be three squat attempts per athlete, and each attempt will be judged based on depth and form. The weight will ascend during each attempt. The strongest squatter will win the event.
Any competitor can win any event, but some athletes are stronger in certain lifts. For example, J.F. Caron is best known for his deadlifting prowess, but he’s also an adept squatter. At the 2021 World’s Strongest Man, he moved 317.4 kilograms (700 pounds) for 11 reps to win the event. It will be interesting to see what the Canadian can do for a single at this contest.
275-Pound Monster Dumbbell Press
The 125-kilogram (275-pound) dumbbell must be lifted from the floor up to the shoulder and then pressed overhead with one arm to a lockout. The competitor can drop the weight and reset when the judge gives the signal. The competitor that performs the most reps in 90 seconds will be the winner.
The favorite for this event is Oleksii Novikov. The 2020 World’s Strongest Man set the world record for the most reps with a 100-kilogram (220-pound) dumbbell by hitting 11 in 75 seconds during the 2020 World’s Ultimate Strongman “Feats of Strength” series. This dumbbell will be 25 kilograms heavier, but Novikov will have more time and, as of October 2021, has a 338-pound dumbbell press under his lifting belt.
Day 2 — Saturday, Mar. 5, 2022
Day two will feature three of the five events for this year.
Austrian Oak Log Press for Max
The second day of competition will also begin with a max effort event. This is the standard log press max performed in other strongman events. The starting weight will be determined at the beginning of the event. Like the max squat, this event will have an ascending weight system.
There are some strong pressers in this contest, but the favorites here would likely be Luke Stoltman, who holds the British record with a lift of 221 kilograms (487 pounds). American record-holder Bobby Thompson is an alternate for this contest, but he’s another threat should he be called up to compete.
Timber Frame Carry
Athletes will have 30 seconds to carry the 400-kilogram (880-pound) wooden frame up a 35-foot ramp. Lifting straps will not be permitted in this event, so the men will have to rely on their grip strength and speed to log the fastest time possible.
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The returning Mateusz Kieliszkowski won this event in 2020 by carrying the frame (weighing 392.4 kilograms) in seven seconds, which was a world record. This frame will be a little heavier, but the other men in the field may want to watch him during this event.
Stone to Shoulder for Reps
The Stone to Shoulder is not a new event, but it will feature a new stone. Instead of the traditional Atlas Stone, the athletes will have to lift Odd Haugen’s legendary Tombstone, weighing 185.9 kilograms (410 pounds). It must be lifted from the ground up to the shoulder. The judge will give a good signal before the man can drop the stone to go again. The most reps performed in two and a half minutes will determine the winner. No tacky will be allowed, but competitors can use tacky towels.
2019 World’s Strongest Man Martins Licis began his meteoric rise by winning the 2019 Arnold Santa Monica contest. His five rep performances in this event took him to that title. However, that event was conducted with an Atlas Stone. He’s likely familiar with the Tombstone, but it will be interesting to see how the athletes handle this particular implement.
Don’t Miss the 2022 ASC
Tickets to attend the 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic are available on the Arnold Sports Festival’s website. Tickets for Friday cost $75, and Saturday tickets cost $95. Gold VIP and Platinum VIP packages are available for $349 and $499, respectively. Note: Prices may vary due to service fees.
Information for how to stream the event is not yet available. BarBend will update this article as more information becomes available.
Featured Image: @novikov_strong_wsm on Instagram