|Wednesday, first day of finals|
"The Man of the Year", Svend Karlsen
After all difficulties he has been through, for example injuring himself in WSM '97 and being so sick the year after he couldn't even tie his shoelaces let alone compete in WSM '98, I believe all of ... ok, most of us ... wish him all the best this year ;-) Now I don't really believe any competitor sent him a 'get better soon so you can win the title' card...
But now it's very close with these
After day 1:
1. Ahola, Karlsen, 19pSamuelsson
|Svend and Jouko are in the lead after the
first day - Super Yoke (not 'Youko' this time!) and Deadlift.
Yoke - Valletta, 10am:
Deadlift - Hagar Qim (hope so - Temples in the background), 2pm:
This was a conventional style deadlift after
The level of results was extremely low this year said Jouko and complained also Samuelsson getting points for "free".
Magnus isn't in the lead now, but he's not totally out yet!
Some wondered what happened to Badenhorst. If it wasn't the food, maybe it was that the qualifying events didn't favor him for sure.
Oh and the nice people of Maltamag promised us even more pics! Also we should thank Hämeen sanomat, the leading sports newspaper in the world...
Sorry my reports come this late... check Ironmind for plain results.
|Full results added 25th November
|Thursday Sep 16th, second day of finals|
Magnus would want you to know that the show isn't over yet!
I also liked very much what Philip Pfister (4th in WSM '98) wrote on Diesel Power Forum, currently the best forum for strong men: "Svend is a very funny guy with a great sense of humor, always clowning around ---- a great strongman too but I sure hope my little finnish friend the giant killer wins this one!!"
Will be very close I'd say. The remaining events are what Svend does the best. Except for maybe Atlas Stones.
Today the guys pulled a boat uphill on dry land (some buy a winch for that, these guys save the money for a good meal afterwards). Samuelsson has aggressive technique which seems to work best in fast pulls, Jouko's technique, with straight back and all, suits better for heavier pulls. He hasn't improved in this one as he should have. Arm over arm isn't just about how tall you are, it's about good coordination and being able to adapt technique when the load starts moving faster and faster. See Ziljstra on video.
Jouko said there's nothing to explain - today four guys were better than him. "I'm not happy with my fifth place but not too disappointed either. I put everything I got on line. Also there are still events and days left."
Friday might be decisive for the competition: Atlas Stones which Jouko must win, then pulling a 80 ton airplane with harness and rope. "In the plane pull the big guys always start strong, but if everything goes well, guys my size improve in the end. The distance to pull is 30 meters and that's a real task", described Jouko.
The fact is, when pulling in a 45deg angle for example, you get tan(45)*bw=1 time your bodyweight pulling forwards, which equals to doing one chin-up. If Ahola has to do chins with 30kg extra to even keep up pace, I'm sorry to inform it will hurt him in the end also. Olafsson doesn't even need much strength, just a 70 deg angle. Still, I can't say I have nothing against this event. It's simply about who pulls it and who doesn't. There are events favoring lighter guys also.
... I just got a mail from Christine, and she reminded me that her favorites are almost all with Manfred's group now. World's Strongest Man has suddenly become just one competition among others, but the organizers had it coming. However, WSM is still a great show as the guys try to be at their best there.
Finally, let us welcome Australia's Strongest Man to join us in the web!
|Finnday Sep 17th, third day of finals|
|I used most of my finger strength
today for writing a short article in Maltamag,
when they in turn provided me more photos! (I even know the final results
As I said could be, Friday was decisive for the competition. Jouko hauled 18 points, placing 2nd in both events today, while Svend with more or less average performances (for him) got only 12 points. I believe Jouko's unequaled routine is what made the difference.
Actually I had hard time even believing that Jouko did as well as he did. I was waiting that Svend makes up in plane pull what he loses in stones. But this is no time for Svend to be disappointed either! Definately the best show from him since Helsinki '98, just that this competition will mean much more for his strongman career!
Cumulative scores after three days
Ironmind: "The Atlas stones featured a new
addition, a massive 163-kg stone, which was lifted by the top four finishers."
|Plane Pull with harness and rope
- Malta Int. Airport
25 meters (not 30), 83 tons. Virtanen and Ahola pulled it all the way, I'm not sure of the others. Janne was one second faster. Girard placed third.
|Saturday Sep 18th, last day of finals|
|Giant Log Lift for
reps (121kg on chest), Valletta Freedom Square, 10.00
1. Girard (17 reps)
Medley, Valletta Freedom Square, 11.00
1. Karlsen 41.00 s
Svend put up a good fight in the last events!
FINAL COMPETITION RESULTS:
|GALLERY (Latest additions thanks to Michael A. Caruana!)|
|Janne Virtanen afterwards about his 2nd place:
- It tasted sweet and gave me belief for the future. It's good to continue from this.
- Already next weekend I should be travelling to Estonia to international sumo wrestling competitions, but I might have to cancel that. Muscles got so sore here I might not be up to sumo ring too soon.
Jouko was too busy Saturday evening to comment much. We'll hear him later.