The 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic (ASC) UK is set for Sept. 23-24, 2022, as part of the 2022 Arnold Sports Festival UK in Birmingham, England. The second edition of the strongman contest will feature 12 athletes competing in six events over two days. Below are the 11 confirmed athletes at the time of this article’s publication:
2022 Arnold Strongman Classic UK Roster
- Kim Ujarak
- Bobby Thompson
- Ervin Toots
- Rauno Heinla
- Paul Smith
- Konstantine Janashia
- Pa O’Dwyer
- Jerry Pritchett
- Ryan Bennett
- Gavin Bilton
- Mitchell Hooper
- Winner of the 2022 Scotland’s Strongest Man contest
The final athlete on the roster has not yet been determined. Still, a 12th athlete will qualify for the competition via the 2022 Scotland’s Strongest Man contest one week before the 2022 ASC UK and extend the roster to an even number.
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2022 Arnold Strongman Classic UK Events
Six events for the 2022 ASC UK will test athletes’ strength, speed, and stamina. Below is a breakdown of each event:
Super Yoke — 500 Kilograms (1,102.3 Pounds)
Yoke walks in many strongman contests are part of a medley and bear lesser weight to not entirely gas out the competitors. When the yoke has a dedicated event, the weight increases, putting the strongmen’s midlines and footwork to the test.
The yoke at the 2022 ASC UK will weigh 500 kilograms (1,102.3 pounds) — deemed “The Beast Yoke,” a reference to 2017 WSM champion Eddie “The Beast” Hall‘s previous all-time deadlift world record of the same weight. After his performance at the 2022 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) contest, it would be surprising if anyone could prevent Hooper from claiming first-place points in this event. He has the speed necessary and has shown the strength required to move such a large and clunky implement with agility.
Deadlift for Reps — 370 Kilograms (815.7 Pounds)
A classic deadlift for reps event, this one is destined for the post-show highlight reel. The roster is a who’s who of deadlift aficionados. Assuming Pritchett and Heinla’s health is 100 percent, they will be front runners heading into the event. However, Janashia is also a beast with a barbell and would surely like to turn his thus far lackluster year in competition on its head. Hooper has made significant strides in training, preparing for his busy competition schedule, and could post a juicy rep count.
Bag Over Bar
Tossing a series of sandbags designed to appear like Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s head, according to Laurence Shahlaei, will favor the athletes who are quick on their feet and know how to extend their hips properly for precise trajectories with each toss. Assuming Hooper has experience with the expected weights in this event, it is tough to bet against him in any timed event. Bilton’s height could be an advantage, placing him at the top of this event.
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[Related: Strongwoman Rhianon Lovelace Breaks World Deadlift Record at 2022 Berkshire’s Strongest Contest]
Heavy Dumbbell for Reps — 100 Kilograms (220.5 Pounds)
There isn’t a standout dumbbell presser in the roster as it stands, but there are several strong overhead pressers that could train this event specifically to improve their performances. Thompson and Smith are strong when moving weight overhead; although in Thompson’s case, a log press is different from a dumbbell press, the strength is there and could translate if the technique is refined.
Leg drive is tantamount to a strong performance in this event, and some athletes might find themselves a few reps shy of their target, given the events from day one of the competition.
Arnold Stone Carry
An event inspired by the Dinnie Stones, which is a farmer’s carry for distance using unevenly weighted stones. For this event, the stones will be visually reminiscent of Atlas Stones; one weighing 130 kilograms (286.6 pounds) and the other weighing 160 kilograms (352.7 pounds). The handles in each stone will be similar to those of the Dinnie Stones, so the grip will be immensely uncomfortable for the athletes during their respective heats. Per Shahlaei:
This one is going to be grit, determination, and pain.
Tough to argue with that given the nature of the event and the clunkiness of the implements. The broader-shouldered athletes theoretically will have an easier time as their structures might line up in such a way that the stones don’t clunk against their legs, but at the end of the day, this event will be nasty for all involved, and the winner will be whoever can bear the most punishment.
The final event is a classic Atlas Stone race for time with the five implements ranging from 120 kilograms (264.6 pounds) to 200 kilograms (440.9 pounds). Platforms will decrease in height from five feet to four feet. Predictions for the Atlas Stones, as usual, are difficult as those in the mix for the podium will know how many points they need heading into the event. The athletes who are out of the running for a podium finish may not go as all-out as they otherwise would.
Still, the Atlas Stones is a nail-biter of an event when first place overall is on the line and should be an exciting finish to the contest.
BarBend will update this article when the winner of the 2022 Scotland’s Strongest Man is determined and that athlete confirms their entry to the 2022 ASC UK.
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