The Rudridge Ultimate Strongman Giant Weekend reached its finale over the weekend when the UK’s Strongest Man 2017 was named during an action-packed three-day contest in Belfast.
The audience at the sold-out event was treated to an epic display of awe-inspiring disciplines, including the Ship’s Anchor and Chain Drag, the Giant Log Lift, and the Stones of Strength, which tested the ultimate in stamina, strength and skill of the athletes taking part, many of whom consume up to 10,000 calories a day during competitions.
Laurence Shahlaei, from Cheltenham in Gloucestershire, took the title of UK’s Strongest Man and the XIV CNP Trophy for the first time, beating Tom Stoltman from Scotland and Pa O’Dwyer from Ireland who placed second and third respectively. Laurence, aged 34, won by just two points in a nail-biting battle to the finish having suffered an injury to his quad muscle in the penultimate event.
Commenting on his Facebook page, Laurence said: “Pleased with a solid performance placing first in seven of the last nine events after taking it easy on day one … Happy to be going home with another title to my name (UK’s strongest man 2017). Few days taking it easy then upping my game for the next big show.”
In addition to the UK’s Strongest Man, the winner of the Ultimate Strongman Master World Championship, sponsored by Blackbox Document Solutions, was announced as Žydrūnas Savickas from Lithuania. The event included the phenomenal Hanson Truck Pull, which saw contestants hauling 13.2 tonnes of metal more than 20 metres.
Alan Betteridge, Director at Rudridge, who are sponsors of the weekend, said: “Congratulations to Laurence and Žydrūnas on their well-deserved victories.
“Once again the event was a huge success and made for incredible viewing. The sheer power of the contestants and their tenacity for completing some of the toughest and most challenging tasks imaginable really is incredible.”