Martins Licis Wins Arnold Classic Europe (Watch His Epic Deadlift Set)

Over the weekend, the Arnold Classic Europe took place in Barcelona, Spain. The sports filled weekend ran from September 28th and through to the 30th and hosted a ton of world-renowned strength athletes, which included several professional strongmen who went head to head in the Arnold Classic Europe Pro Strongman competition.

This competition is a big deal because it has the potential to qualify athletes for next year’s Arnold Sports Festival USA, which takes place every year in Columbus, Ohio, and serves as the Pro Strongman World Championships.

This year, Latvian strongman Martins Licis walked away with the first place finish and $10,000 USD in prize money. Overall, Licis put on a strong performance and crushed an epic deadlift set of 365kg/804 lbs for eight reps, a video that’s making serious waves across social media.

Last year, Matjaz Belsak won the Arnold Classic Europe, but unfortunately tore his bicep during this year’s competition. We’re still waiting for more details to be released on the severity of his injury, and the event is discussed below in Licis’ Instagram description.

Author’s Note: The video below highlights Licis’ 365kg deadlift set for eight reps. For those experiencing viewing issues on mobile — check this link!

In Licis’ Instagram post recapping the competition, in which he is handed the trophy by Arnold Schwarzenegger, he writes, “With @schwarzenegger , receiving my prize for winning first place at the @arnoldsports festival! Hats off to @belsakstrongman! He would have beaten me if it were not for his bicep tear! Although I competed well, I had a horrible yoke carry which lost me a lot of points, and almost the entire contest…

It was my birthday the day before, and I got lost in the streets of Barcelona for hours with my good friends @reddpanduhh and @_danalyn (by the way, THANK YOU guys for all your support. You really came through for me in keeping ”it” together, cheering at me for events, and keeping me fed/hydrated!” cont. 

An epic deadlift set, a sizable cash prize, and a Arnold Classic Europe Pro Strongman win —it’s safe to say Licis had a pretty great birthday weekend!

Feature image from @martinslicis Instagram page. 


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Jake holds a Master's in Sports Science and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. Currently, Jake serves as one of the full time writers and editors at BarBend. He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and has spoken at state conferences on the topics of writing in the fitness industry and building a brand. As of right now, Jake has published over 1,100 articles related to strength athletes and sports. Articles about powerlifting concepts, advanced strength & conditioning methods, and topics that sit atop a strong science foundation are Jake's bread-and-butter. On top of his personal writing, Jake edits and plans content for 15 writers and strength coaches who come from every strength sport.Prior to BarBend, Jake worked for two years as a strength and conditioning coach for hockey and lacrosse players, and was a writer at the Vitamin Shoppe's corporate office. Jake regularly competes in powerlifting in the 181 lb weight class, and considers himself a weightlifting shoe sneaker head. On the side of writing full time, Jake works as a part-time strength coach and works with clients through his personal business Concrete Athletics in Hoboken and New York City.