The 2022 Giants Live Strongman Classic is set for July 9, 2022, at the Royal Albert Hall in London, England, and the contest just got more interesting. On April 28, 2022, Giants Live released the 2022 Strongman Classic event list. The one-day contest will feature the five events listed below:
2022 Strongman Classic Events
- Dumbbell Medley
- The Pillars of Hercules
- Farmer’s Carry for Distance
- Axle Deadlift
- Castle Stones
2020 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) champion Oleksii Novikov will attempt to defend his title, and several of the events lean to his strengths, notably the dumbbell medley.
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2022 Strongman Classic Roster
Below are the 11 athletes that are confirmed for the 2022 Strongman Classic. One athlete has yet to be named:
- Chieck “Iron Biby” Sanou
- Evan Singleton
- Paul Smith
- Andy Black
- Mark Felix
- Ken McClelland
- Oleksii Novikov — Reigning Champion
- Rob Kearney
- Adam Bishop
- Konstantine Janashia
- Spenser Remick
- TBD Wildcard
Check out the breakdown below for each event and who has historically excelled in each.
Novikov is, without a doubt, the favorite to hop to an early lead on the leaderboard in event one. The 2020 WSM champ has excelled in the heavy dumbbell since scoring the heavy dumbbell for reps world record on the World’s Ultimate Strongman‘s “Feats of Strength” series.
At the 2021 Rogue Invitational, Novikov was the lone athlete to lift all five dumbbells in the Cyr Dumbbell Ladder event. While athletes like Janashia and Singleton could also post some top times, if anyone is placing bets, Novikov should get the nod here.
The Pillars of Hercules
The Pillars of Hercules event, also known as the Hercules Hold, is a static hold for time with a gigantic leaning pillar in each hand. The event is highly strenuous on grip strength and how well each athlete can keep their lats engaged to maintain a reasonably comfortable position.
The heavier athletes with bigger hands are likely to perform well in this event. Iron Biby, the biggest of the athletes on the roster, will have an advantage as his center of gravity can potentially help him from teetering to one side. He has world record log lift shoulders on him and won this event in 2021.
If anyone were to bet against Felix in his signature event, they would likely end up in the red. Although Felix finished third in this event behind Singleton and Iron Biby in 2021, he still has Hercules Hold world record and is touted for having the strongest grip in the sport. Felix might take a shot at breaking his world record here, particularly if any of the other athletes post impressive times that Felix needs to beat.
Historically, strongmen are not privy to the clock when competing in this event and don’t know if their time is good enough for a win (though athletes later in the lineup will know the times scored by athletes who completed their attempts before them). While that is a disadvantage to the athletes, they are compelled to give their max effort during their attempts.
Farmer’s Carry for Distance
This is another event that will test the athletes’ grip strength, but this time in a way that requires fast feet. Black is notorious for his efforts in the Dinnie Stones and could translate that to a favorable farmer’s walk. Novikov, Bishop, Janashia, and Singleton are also beasts when carrying weight across a finish line. Notably, Novikov won the Frame Carry event in 2021, the closest analog to the Farmer’s Carry.
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Unless the rest of the roster really upped their deadlift game since the 2021 Strongman Classic, first place points will likely go to Bishop. Last year, the British deadlift specialist won this event with seven successful reps of 350 kilograms (771.6 pounds). Bishop is a historically consistent deadlifter in events that call for max reps, and he is no stranger to an axle bar.
What would a strongman event be if it didn’t close with the Castle Stones (also known as the Atlas Stones)? 2021 WSM champion Tom Stoltman is not on the roster for this contest, and that means the door is open for another athlete to score first-place points in the final event.
Stoltman won the Atlas Stone event at the 2021 Strongman Classic, but Singleton, Novikov, and Bishop also posted exceptional runs. While Stoltman got up five stones ranging from 100 to 180 kilograms in just under 17 seconds, the other three successfully loaded all five stones within 22 seconds. Given that even the narrowest of margins can make the difference in the Stones, this event feels like anyone’s game in London.
To The Royal Albert Hall
Even with the mystery of the final entreat lingering, the roster is stacked. Completing five events in one day is no walk in the park, so we’ll see if Novikov can maintain the momentum built from his win at the 2022 Europe’s Strongest Man and his runner-up finish at the 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic with a title defense at the Royal Albert Hall.
Featured image: @evan_trex_strongman on Instagram