Coast man carries crown as Queensland's strongest
SQUEEZING in early training sessions at 3am, or working out after midnight, has paid off for strongman Scott Hipwell after he was crowned Queensland's strongest man.
Mr Hipwell took out the open men's category of the four-round Queensland's Strongest Man 2014 series, and was handed the trophy after the final round wrapped up on the Gold Coast on Sunday.
The win caught Mr Hipwell by surprise. Giving away up to 70kg to some of his opponents, he only entered the open category to test himself out against some man-mountains.
"I didn't expect to win it at all," Mr Hipwell said.
"Initially I just went in it to see how I'd go."
After winning almost everything there was to win in the 90kg and under categories, Mr Hipwell entered the opens at 92kg and lifted up to five times his body weight for some events.
"It's all based around awkward stuff... it's a really hard thing to train for," he said.
As well as winning the state's strongman crown, Mr Hipwell has qualified for the world strongman competition to be held in the US early next year.
While he still hasn't fully committed to jetting overseas to compete, Mr Hipwell said he was leaning towards heading over to test his skill against the world's best as time ticked on.
"I probably will,'' he said.
"I'm getting a bit older now so I've got to take the opportunities when they come."
The owner of Muscle Hut at Birtinya said what was most encouraging in this year's competition was the growth of the sport, which he said had exploded in the past five years.
"In 2009 I think it was, we did a series with about 36 competitors in total," Mr Hipwell said.
"There were close to 400 competitors this year, and over 100 just on the Gold Coast."
He said the format of strongman events made it a fantastic spectator sport.
He said it wasn't every day people could turn up and watch men flipping cars or pulling trucks.
Strongmen Special Feats:
- Atlas Stones: athletes required to lift massive concrete balls onto various platforms the quickest
- Car Flip: depending on the event, athletes complete one flip, or a number of flips
- Farmers Walk: athletes pick up two different implements, and must walk or run with them for a set distance, or as long as possible
- Keg Toss: athletes must throw a number of kegs, usually of increasing weight, over a set height, as quick as they can
- Truck Pull: an athlete must pull a truck from a standstill, a set distance, as quickly as possible
- Tyre Flip: athletes must flip tyres, up to 500kg, either a maximum number of reps, or over a set distance as quickly as possible