World’s Strongest Man 2018 – Giants Live 5

Giants Live 5 – World Tour Finals

Gotta be honest, I’m not entirely sure what the World Tour IS. Is it like the Ultimate Strongman Champions League? Who knows. But the finals are here and now! Another huge lineup, including Big Z who is the defending champion that came from behind to win last year!

  • Tom Stoltman (Scotland) – 2nd place Scotland’s Strongest Man 2017
  • Vytautas Lalas (Lithuania) – 2nd place World’s Strongest Man 2012
  • Adam Bishop (England) – =3rd place Britian’s Strongest Man 2018
  • Mikhail Shivlyakov (Russia) – Russia’s Strongest Man
  • Mateusz Kieliszkowski (Poland) – 3x Poland’s Strongest Man
  • Matjaz Belsak (Slovenia) – 2x Slovenia’s Strongest Man
  • Konstantine Janashia (Georgia) – 2nd place Europe’s Strongest Man 2018
  • Iron Biby (Africa) – 4th place World Tour Finals 2017
  • Martins Licis (USA) – 4th place World’s Strongest Man 2017
  • Mark Felix (England) – 2nd place Britian’s Strongest Man 2015 & 2016
  • Zydrunas Savickas (Lithuania) – 4x World’s Strongest Man, 2017 World Tour Finals Champion

Like Europe’s Strongest Man this year, the lineup here wouldn’t look out of place at the World’s Strongest Man! Expect one hell of a competition right here!

Event 1 – Axle Press World Championships

We’ve had Deadlift and Loglift championships, now for the Axel championship! A massive bar, thicker than usual, simply has to be lifted overhead. The weight will continue to go up until we have a winner, and potentially a NEW record holder! 180KG seems to have been the best a number of athletes could muster, while a handful are currently at 195KG and about to go heavier! Belsak is the first man to attempt 207KG, which is 2KG above his own record. He gets it up but is unable to lock out. Great attempt from him, but he’s eliminated from this event. Iron Biby now, and he’s a MASSIVE presser! 207KG should go up, and even though it looks painful with how much he bends backwards on the lift, he does indeed get the lift. Licis also looks to match 207KG, but seems to give up before any real attempt. Perhaps he knew he wouldn’t get it and is simply saving himself. Kieleszkowski is up now, and is after a Polish record here. He tries but is unable to lock out as well. Good attempt. The mighty Big Z is last, and usually this weight would be no issue, but today he can’t seem to get it to his chest properly to give it any real attempt. That means that Iron Biby is the winner, but he wants to break Eddie Hall’s world record! Eddie is helping to psych up Biby, encouraging him to break the record! Its up to his chest, but he is unable to press it. He will get 1 more attempt, but the odds of making it a second time are slim to none, and he fails. Maybe next year!

Event 2 – Deadlift

A massive 380KG must be deadlifted as many times in 60 seconds as possible. Some big names have been and gone, with less than no doubt they would have wanted. Current first place goes to Janashia, the world deadlift champion from 2017, with 5. At this weight, anything over 5 will be incredible. Lalas and Stoltman go head to head first for us to see, and Lalas could be the man to take first here based on previous competitions. Stoltman does extremely well to get to 4, as deadlift isn’t typically his best event. Lalas makes 5 to tie for first, and that might be the winning number. Bishop and Shivlyakov will try and beat that though! They both look great, getting to 5 with 30 seconds still left, and plenty of time to rest up and attempt a 6th for the win. Shivlyakov waits longer to rest and does indeed get the 6th rep, while Bishop perhaps went too early and failed. Great lifting from both men though! Belsak and Licis now, and I can see Licis being the man to beat here. He gets to 6 with 30 seconds left, and easily gets a 7th, and then an 8th for good measure! Belsak only manages 3, which he’ll be disappointed with. Excellent lifting from Licis though!

Event 3 – Carry & Drag

A 250KG block needs to be picked up and carried down the 10m course. Then the athletes need to run back and drag a massive chain and anchor weighing 350KG down the entire 20m course! A tiring event that some guys simply won’t be able to finish. The key here is to lift the chain as high as possible to prevent less friction! Current 1st place belongs to Stoltman, with a time of 29.72 seconds. A great time, but probably won’t quite hold up in the end. Iron Biby and Kieliszkowski are the first men we get to see attempt this, and Kieliszkowski is off like the train we know he is with running events! The chain and anchor prove little problem for him as he takes the lead by a second over Stoltman. Biby struggles but gets it over the line before time is up. Next is Bishop and Janashia. I expect Janashia to do well here. Both men are neck and neck going to the chain and anchor, but its Bishop who goes over the line in the fastest time of 25.66 seconds, while Janashia only manages 35.17 seconds. Great job by Bishop! Only Licis and Shivlyakov can challenge that time now, and both men are definitely capable of it! However, neither beat the time, but Licis does enough for 3rd place, with Shivlyakov only in 7th.

3 events down and again only 2 more to go, so lets have a look at the overall scores!

Licis is comfortably in 1st place, while Bishop is doing extremely well holding on to 2nd place for the time being. Kieliszkowski is only a point and a half behind though, and he is definitely a man to watch out for. Unfortunately for Big Z, he has had to retire from this competition due to injuries.

Event 4 – Car Walk

1000lb car to be walked down the 20m course in the fastest time possible! Kieliszkowski has been close to the world record a couple of times now, and this could be his time! Shivlyakov is in the lead so far at just over 17 seconds. Biby and Felix go first for us, and Biby is off to a great start while Felix is really slow. 15.31 for Biby puts him into 1st place, while Felix is currently down in 3rd. Sub 15 seconds will be hard to beat, but Licis and Kieliszkowski could be the men to do it! Belsak and Lalas are up before them though, and we’ll see how they match up. Both are very fast, but Lalas drops the car half way and loses out on a potential win, and Belsak does indeed take first place so far! Still good enough for current 3rd for Lalas though! Next is Stoltman and Licis. Licis looks good while Stoltman is really struggling, but they both finish in 5th and 6th place respectively. Licis will have wanted a better place, but he’ll just have to make sure his final event is perfect. Now its Bishop and Kieliszkowski’s turn! Will we see a new world record? Kieliszkowski is moving like a rocket and takes first place, but not good enough for a new world record. Bishop gets a great time of just over 15 seconds but its only good enough for 4th!

Plenty of interesting placements after that event, so lets see how that effects the scores as we head into the final event!

Licis remains in first, but his lead is only half a point over Kieliszkowski in second place! Bishop moves down to third but could easily take overall first with a great performance in the stones. Belsak is still within reach of a podium finish as well!

Event 6 – Atlas Stones

5 stones. 140KG to 200KG. Platforms. We all know the deal by now, so lets just get into it! First place so far is Tom Stoltman with a time of 21.67 seconds! He won’t worry the top 3, but getting in between some of the top guys might be what makes or breaks a podium finish for someone! Belsak and Bishop now battle for 3rd place, and Bishop is going very slowly. Belsak gets them all up in the 2nd fasted time now, which might very well put him on the podium. Bishop is currently in 4th place and that could very well have knocked him off the podium. Time for the 1st place battle! Licis or Kieliszkowski? They are both flying, but Kieliszkowski gets all 5 up in 16.09 seconds for an incredible first place in the stones, and that seals his victory here too!!! Licis takes second in the event securing his 2nd place on the podium.

Wow! That time on the stones is absolutely world class! A poor performance from Bishop though, and I believe he has lost his podium place.

Kieliszkowski takes 1st place after perhaps the most impressive stone run of all time! Licis in 2nd by just half a point, and surprising to me is that Bishop remains in 3rd place and gets his podium finish after all!

So that concludes the Giants Live shows, and tomorrow we behind the World’s Strongest Man heats! Most of these men will no doubt be there, and some of them will be one hell of a force to be reckoned with!

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