Oleksii Novikov Wins 2022 Giants Live Strongman Classic

The Ukrainian strongman goes back-to-back at the Royal Albert Hall.

Oleksii Novikov successfully defended his title at the 2022 Giants Live Strongman Classic. Novikov stood atop the podium at Royal Albert Hall in London, England, on Saturday, July 9, 2022. Canada’s Mitchell Hooper finished as the runner-up, and third place went to Evan Singleton of the United States. The top three finishers earned invites to the 2023 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) contest, though Novikov has a lifetime invite as a former WSM champion. The final standings are below:

2022 Strongman Classic Results

  1. Oleksii Novikov — 54 points
  2. Mitchell Hooper — 42 points
  3. Evan Singleton — 41.5 points
  4. Maxime Boudreault — 38.5 points
  5. Paul Smith — 36 points
  6. Eddie Williams — 34 points
  7. Spenser Remick — 32.5 points
  8. Gavin Bilton — 30.5 points
  9. Rob Kearney — 28 points
  10. Mark Felix — 28 points
  11. Ken McClelland — 20 points
  12. Andy Black — One point | withdrew due to injury


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by GIANTS LIVE: WSM Arena Tour (@giantslivestrongman)

[Related: Watch The Stoltman Brothers Train With Bodybuilder Nathan De Asha]

Dumbbell Medley

The athletes’ goal was to lift all five circus dumbbells, weighing 80 to 120 kilograms, overhead to a lockout until the judge gives a down signal. The man that could lift all five weights in the fastest time possible would be the winner.

Dumbbell pressing is a Novikov trademark, and he was considered the favorite going into the event. He started the contest at Royal Albert Hall by picking up the first event win by three seconds over second-place finisher Rob Kearney. They were the only men in the lineup to lift all five dumbbells. Hooper rounded out the top three in Event 1. Andy Black suffered an injury and officially withdrew from the contest. The details of that injury are unknown as of this writing.

  1. Oleksii Novikov — Five in 38.38 seconds
  2. Rob Kearney — Five in 42.21 seconds
  3. Mitchell Hooper — Four in 31.46 seconds
  4. Paul Smith — Four in 43.36 seconds
  5. Gavin Bilton — Four in 46.27 seconds
  6. Spenser Remick — Four in 52.70 seconds
  7. Maxime Boudreault — Four in 69.81 seconds
  8. Ken McClelland — Three in 59.3 seconds
  9. Evan Singleton — Two in 13.13 seconds
  10. Eddie Williams — Two in 18.10 seconds
  11. Mark Felix — One in 8.06 seconds
  12. Andy Black — One in 15.08 seconds

Hercules Hold

Also known as “The Pillars of Hercules,” the men were tasked with holding the 160-kilogram pillars up with their arms outstretched to their sides for as long as possible before losing grip strength. Mark Felix holds the world record in this event but finished out of the top five in this contest.

Australia’s Eddie Williams pulled off the upset, lasting 72 seconds before releasing the handles. Paul Smith and Hooper took second and third, respectively. Novikov finished in fifth place in this event.

  1. Eddie Williams — 72.01 seconds
  2. Paul Smith — 67.1 seconds
  3. Mitchell Hooper — 64.65 seconds
  4. Evan Singleton — 64.04 seconds
  5. Oleksii Novikov — 58.11 seconds
  6. Mark Felix — 53.59 seconds
  7. Gavin Bilton — 52.34 seconds
  8. Spencer Remick — 52.16 seconds
  9. Maxime Boudreault — 50.21 seconds
  10. Ken McClelland — 47.53 seconds
  11. Rob Kearney — 35.95 seconds

Farmer’s Walk

For the third event, the competitors had to carry two 150 kilogram (330 pounds) implements for max distance within a 60-second time limit. The longest distance in the shortest time would determine first place. Novikov and Boudreault were both moving at an incredible pace, carrying the implements at least one meter per second. The 2020 World’s Strongest Man managed to hold on for three more meters than the Canadian, thus giving him his second event win. Paul Smith claimed the bronze spot by finishing two meters behind Boudreault.

  1. Oleksii Novikov — 63.3 meters
  2. Maxime Boudreault — 60 meters
  3. Paul Smith — 58 meters
  4. Evan Singleton — 55.5 meters
  5. Eddie Williams — 53.25 meters
  6. Mark Felix — 52.35 meters
  7. Spenser Remick — 44.15 meters
  8. Ken McClelland — 41.4 meters
  9. Mitchell Hooper — 29.6 meters
  10. Rob Kearney — 20.5 meters
  11. Gavin Bilton — 15 meters

Axle Deadlift for Reps

Next up was the Axle Deadlift for Reps event. The men had to pull 360 kilograms (793.8 pounds) up to a lockout position for as many reps as possible within 60 seconds. The judge had to give a down command for the rep to count. 

Novikov’s momentum at this point was too much to overcome because his confidence was very high. The defending champion of this contest completed seven reps before time expired. To his credit, Hooper kept the contest interesting by finishing one rep behind the Ukrainian strongman. The 56-year-old Felix finished in third place with five reps.

  1. Oleksii Novikov — Seven reps
  2. Mitchell Hooper — Six reps
  3. Mark Felix — Five reps
  4. Evan Singleton — Four reps
  5. Spenser Remick — Four reps
  6. Rob Kearney — Three reps
  7. Maxime Boudreault — Two reps
  8. Gavin Bilton — Two reps
  9. Paul Smith — One rep
  10. Eddie Williams — One rep
  11. Ken McClelland — One rep

Atlas Stones

Per strongman tradition, the last event at Royal Albert Hall was the Atlas Stones. The stones weighed in a range of 120 to 200 kilograms (264 to 440 pounds). The man who could lift all five stones to their respective pedestals without them falling off claimed first place. Canada’s other representative in this lineup, Boudreault, blitzed through all five stones within 24 seconds. Evan Singleton would finish less than two seconds behind him for second place. Novikov finished only one-hundredth of a second behind Singleton, but his effort was still good enough for him to stand atop the podium as a two-time Strongman Classic champion at the end of the day.

  1. Maxime Boudreault — Five in 24.03 seconds
  2. Evan Singleton — Five in 25.59 seconds
  3. Oleksii Novikov — Five in 25.6 seconds
  4. Gavin Bilton — Five in 27.23 seconds
  5. Eddie Williams — Five in 34.31 seconds
  6. Mitchell Hooper — Five in 35.58 seconds
  7. Spenser Remick — Five in 51.24 seconds
  8. Rob Kearney — Four in 23.21 seconds
  9. Ken McClelland — Four in 23.94 seconds
  10. Paul Smith — Four in 31.78 seconds
  11. Mark Felix — Three in 24.56 seconds

The next Giants Live event will be the 2022 Giants Live Open and World Deadlift Championships. That contest will be held on Aug. 6, 2022, at Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff, Wales. 

Featured image: @giantslivestrongman on Instagram