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The 6 athletes competing in heat 4 were as follows:

Nick Best
Warrick Brant
Louis-Philippe Jean
Agris Kazelniks
Zydrunas Savickas
Laurence Shahlaei

Nick Best is someone I’d heard about, especially in the Arnold Strongman Classic, but never seen perform – this was about to be rectified. In fact, he set the fastest time in the Giant Farmers Walk of the 3 people in his race.

Savickas draws first blood

Of course when reigning champion Zydrunas Saviacks is around no lead is guaranteed to stay for long as he blasted his way to victory, beating Best’s time by over 8 seconds, with Englishman Laurence Shahlaei coming in a close second. This was similar to the same event on last year’s final where Savickas and Shahlaei finished 1st and 2nd then too.

Giant Farmers Walk Results

The second event was the Squat Lift and it was interesting to see that Savickas had some strapping on his left thigh. According to Shahlaei this group contained the 6 best squatters in the world so for him to retain his unbeaten record in this event was going to be difficult. In fact Best, Brant and Kazekniks all managed 10 reps, only to be beaten by The Big Z who got 11.

Shahlaei ties with Savickas

Shahlaei was last to go and while he managed to remain unbeaten he couldn’t beat Savickas and scored 11 reps too to share first place with the current World’s Strongest Man.

Squat Lift Results

Savickas now led the group, but only by one point to his nearest rival Shahlaei, who in turn was a handy 3.5 points ahead of Best. Somewhat surprising was Canada’s Strongest Man, Jean, and a finalist in last year’s World’s Strongest Man, being in last place.

Standings after the Squat Lift

The Africa Stone proved to be a nightmare event for Laurence Shahlaei as he only managed 54.2 metres. It looked like he never got his hands properly linked and therefore his grip was always weak and at risk of allowing the stone to slip, which it eventually did.

Best does Best

It was Nick Best who up ended winning this event with a great distance of 79.4 metres. A distance that made second place Savickas look short with only 62.1, though I think he may have been playing the strategic game and only trying to get past Jean to grab second place and valuable points. Savickas, nothing if not always consistent.

Africa Stone Results

After three events Savickas was clearly in the lead but Best was breathing down Shahlaei’s neck for the runner up spot and the second qualifying place – just half a point separated them.

Standings after the Africa Stone

The 4th event was the Overhead Lift and an event that may have Laurence Shahlaei kicking himself for the next 12 months. After managing 5 lifts he said he’d had enough, though it looked like he could have done more.

Savickas cruises to victory

Enter Savickas and an almost effortless 8 reps, most of them using just his arms alone. With Jean getting 7 reps it meant Shahlaei had to share the points for 3rd place with Brant, where as if he’d got that 6th rep he’d have secured all the points for 3rd place for himself. The shocker was Nick Best, who couldn’t manage one single lift.

Overhead Lift Results

Savickas now had an almost unsaleable lead and there was a handy 4 point gap from Shahlaei down to Best. Things were looking very good for these guys to qualify for the final once again.

Standings after the Overhead Lift

The Deadlift hold proved t be the turning point of this heat as the athletes had to hold up a car for the longest time possible. Shahlaei managed to hold on for just over a minutes before letting the car go, visually frustrated that he hadn’t got a better time.

Best is best, again!

Nick Best proved his worth again by holding on for a phenomenal time of 1 minute and 18 seconds – in fact he had to be told that he’d won before he’d let go! Thanks to a great performance from Jean, Savickas was pushed down to 3rd place.

Deadlift Hold Results

Savickas had now done enough to qualify for the final and defend his crown, but the battle for second place was hotting up as Best trailed Shahlaei by just a single point. Shahlaei would have to get an equal or better performance than Best because if Best beat him, even by just one place, then thanks to a track back and Best’s two victories, it would be the American that would take the second qualifying spot.

Best v Shahlaei

In the showdown between Shahlaei and Best it was Shahlaei who went off the quicker of the two but he was soon caught by Best who loaded the 3rd barrel quicker than Shahlaei. This would end up being the deciding factor as neither managed the 4th barrel. These two ended up as the 1st and 2nd place athletes in this event, with Best taking the honours.

Loading Race Results

In a cruel twist of fate Shahlaei and Best did end up the same points with Best qualifying thanks to his two previous victories compared to Shahlaei’s one. If Shahlaei had have got that 6th lift in the Overhead Lift he’d have been in second alone, and gone through to the final. Savuickas won the group, as everyone would have expected him to do.

Final Standings

Savickas did look to be a little troubled by his quad injury, but enough to stop him winning the group comfortably. He seemed to hold back on some events, but like the mighty Mariusz Pudzianowski he is known to save some energy for the final, and that’s where he puts in 110%. Shahlaei was bitterly disappointed not to make it through but he’s young enough to come back for a good few years yet. Best on the other hand is the oldest competitor at 40 and did very well to qualify for the final in his first World’s Strongest Man appearence.

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In the UK World’s Strongest Man (WSM) starts tonight, not sure about the rest of the world. On Bravo at 8pm is the first of 3 Giants Live competitions that usually talk about being qualifiers for the main WSM competition, even though we then see qualifiers from elsewhere. Confused? Yeah, me too, and the people involved in WSM probably too!

I haven’t updated it in months as I was scared of spoiling the competition as I did last year. There were so many visits to my blog from people searching Zydrunas Savickas that it didn’t take a genius to figure out who had won. Fast forward to this year and I can’t resist blogging about something I love so much, but to avoid having the result spoiled for the second year I won’t be looking at stats or comments until the final has been televised on New Year’s Eve.

For those wanting to see TV broadcast dates in the UK and US, take a look at the official website.

So, looking ahead to the 2010 competition, and what will we see?

Winner
I have my favourites, those being Derek Poundstone, Terry Hollands and Travis Ortmayer. I believe any of these is capable of winning but I can’t look past 2009 winner Zydrunas Savickas. When he’s on form, which is most of the time, he’s unstoppable as we saw last year. There’s no Mariusz Pudzianowski this year, at least that’s what I last read a few months ago, when he stated he’d not being competing in WSM but concentrating on his MMA career instead. Brian Shaw is another one to look out for, coming in third last year and he looked very strong in doing so. My heart says Poundstone, my head says Savickas.

Can anyone beat Hollands in the plane pull?
I asked this question to Kevin Nee at WSM Experience 2010 and he agreed that Hollands was perfectly built for this event and incredibly hard to beat. One thing to bear in mind is that last year he won the event even after injuring his hand in the Giant Farmer’s Walk, so watch out everyone, the plane could be taking off this year!

The Brits
If he’s fully recovered from his injury then Terry Hollands has to be the favourite of the Brits for success, though he’s struggled to match his 3rd place in 2007. Lauence Shahlaei finished 9th in last year’s competition but he surprised me by even reaching the final, and did fantastically well coming to second to Pudzianowski in the aforementioned Giant farmer’s Walk. Always close to the final and sometimes reaching it is dead lift specialist Mark Felix and we also need to look out for Darren Sadler, who despite being one of the shortest competitors in WSM, was a whisker away from making last year’s finals

That’s all for now – please leave a comment on any of the upcoming posts and I’ll promise to read and respond to them when I know who’s been crowned World’s Strongest Man 2010.

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Ever watch World’s Strongest Man on television and wish you could be there? Yeah, me too, but it’s not always easy to get to the exotic places they hold the annual competition. Anyone within travelling distance from London’s ExCeL will now have the opportunity to see the stars of World’s Strongest Man in late May.

World's Strongest Man Experience

On Saturday May 29th and Sunday 30th, the first ever World’s Strongest Man Experience will be taking place at the ExCeL as a part of SENI 2010 – The International Combat Sports Show. Courtesy of WorldsStrongestMan.com, here is some blurb:

Make sure you don’t miss out on your chance to see The first official ‘The World’s Strongest Man’ Experience! Experience the power of WSM over two hours of explosive head to head battles in the all-seater ‘Power Pit!’ arena, hosted by 2001 World’s Strongest Man, Svend Karlsen!

Those taking part in the event are:

Zydrunas Savickas (Lithuania)
World’s Strongest Man 2009, 3-time World’s Strongest Man runner up and 6-time Arnold Strongman Classic Champion

Terry Hollands (England)
3rd place at World’s Strongest Man 2007, England’s Strongest Man 2009, Britain’s Strongest Man 2007 and UK’s Strongest Man 2005

Mark Felix (England)
4th place at World’s Strongest Man 2006, runner up in All-American Strongman Challenge 2010 and Rolling Thunder Champion 2009 & 2008

Kevin Nee (America)
8th place at World’s Strongest Man 2007, runner up in All-American Strongman Challenge 2007 and 4th at America’s Strongest Man 2006

Darren Sadler (England)
3rd place in England’s Strongest Man 2009, 3rd place in Britain’s Strongest Man 2007 and Under 105kg World Strongman Challenge Champion 2006

Laurence Shahlaei (England)
9th place at World’s Strongest Man 2009, England’s Strongest Man 2009 and 4th place in Britain’s Strongest Man 2008

Jimmy Marku (England)
UK’s Strongest Man 2009, Britain’s Strongest Man 2008 and England’s Strongest Man 2008, 2007 & 2006

Sebastian Wenta (Poland)
Runner up World’s Strongest Man 2007, Highlander Challenge World Champion 2008 & 2007 and runner up Europe’s Strongest Man 2007

The events announced thus far are:

  • Dumbell Press
  • Car Deadlift
  • Farmers Walk
  • Shield Carry
  • Atlas Stones

Savickas has to be the favourite, especially with events like the Dumbell Press and Car Deadlift, though he’ll be up against arguably the world’s best WSM Deadlifter in the form of Mark Felix. The Shield Carry, most recently seen in the Super Series last year, is a nice nod back to World’s Strongest Man competitions of old and the Húsafell Stone.

Tickets are £25 each (less for children and there are family reductions) and can be bought from ticketmaster. I am unfortunately busy on the Saturday but will be there on the Sunday and I’ll hopefully see you there! I’m thrilled, after watching these guys on television for years, to be getting the opportunity to see them perform live – hopefully this is just the first of many more events like this.

For more information head over to the World’s Strongest Man Experience page on WorldsStrongestMan.com.

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According to Laurance Shahlaei’s official website he stands 6′ 2″ tall and weighs 140kg, but more importantly he’s England’s Strongest Man 2009 and the 9th Strongest Man in the World as of World’s Strongest Man 2009. Laurence was kind enough to take the time answer a few questions, and here is what he had to say.

Laurence winning the Squat Lift in his WSM heat

Did you watch World’s Strongest Man as a child and who were your favourites?

Yes I did. I have been a huge fan of WSM (World’s Strongest Man) since I was very young. Back then my favourites were Gerrit Badenhorst and Magnus Samuelsson

How did you get into the world of Strongman?

After watching BSM (Britain’s Strongest Man) and WSM in 2004 I got the bug and decided that’s what I want to do so I joined a gym in the January 05 and entered my first comp in the summer.

Can you remember your first Strongman competition and how did you do?

Yes, it was a novice contest with over 30 athletes taking part. I came 8th and was happy with my performance. I had never done any strongman events before the show.

How did it feel to just miss out on the World’s Strongest Man 2008 when you came 3rd in your heat?

I was a little down but it was good for me not to make the final first time as I was much more motivated to improve for 2009.

You won England’s Strongest Man 2009 – was that a tough competition for you and what was it like to be crowned champion?

This was a great win for me as I won by a large margin over some of the best guys in the UK but it was a little disappointing because Terry Hollands and Mark Felix didn’t compete so until we have all the top guys in one contest we won’t know who is the best.

In your heat of the World’s Strongest Man 2009 you dominated to win very easily – what was going through your mind when you saw just how much better you performed than the other 5 guys?

At WSM 08 I told myself to just focus on one event at a time and that’s what I have been doing ever since so I didn’t try to think of how great I was doing. At this level if you start thinking your great you can get lazy and the guys are so good you can go from 1st to last very quickly. My goal was always to place high on the first 4events as they were good events for me and I knew I needed to perform well on them to make the final.

You came 9th in your first World’s Strongest Man final in Malta in 2009, how do you think you did and where could you have done better?

To be top 10 in the world is fantastic but it’s still 8 places lower than my goal so as much as enjoyed it there is still lots of work to do. I need to really improve throwing, stones and my over head to beat the top guys as these are events I am dropping a lot of points on.

You have improved probably more than any other Strongman on the circuit in the last 12 months, can we expect the same progression in the next 12 months and what are your goals for the future?

Thank you. As long as I don’t get any bad injuries I will keep improving for a few years yet. My ultimate goal is to win WSM. I would also love to compete in the Arnolds.

Who in your opinion is the greatest Strongman of all time?

Mariusz Pudzianowski. He took the sport to a new level and he has won WSM more times than anyone else.

Thanks for your time and congratulations on a great performance at World’s Strongest Man 2009.

Thanks 🙂

Big thanks to Laurence once again, and for more information you can visit biglozstrongman.com – the home of Laurence Shahlaei, future World’s Strongest Man?

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Over at the World’s Strongest Man Facebook page the following question was asked:

What are everybodies predictions for WSM 2010? Will Zydrunas triumph again, or will Mariusz regain his crown? Or will one of the new promising Americans take the trophy?

A small comment turned into a lot more, so much so that I decided it was blogworthy – so here is my answer…

I had Derek Poundstone to win the 2009 event, and think he’ll be in the mix for 2010 as well.

If you consider that Travis Ortmayer was still getting over the flu which plagued him in the heats then he could certainly improve on the 5th place he got in 2008 and 2009.

Can you really look past Savickas and Pudzianowski though? If Pudz had done better in Giant Farmer’s Walk it would have been so much closer, and I think psychologically Savickas went away from that first event with a massive edge. Then if Savickas had done better in the Boat Pull he’d have won without the need for Atlas Stones. Will Pudzianowski, content with a record breaking 5 wins dedicate his time to MMA now?

Of the Brits it’s all about Terry Hollands, if you want to see a Brit victorious anyway. Hollands finished so well and look how awesome he was at the Plane Pull! More training on his weaker events and Big Tel will be a major force.

Brian Shaw is another one to look out for – 3rd place in his first ever final, and looked good for more points with another 12 months of experience – there’s a huge future for this guy.

There’s also a decent crop of newcomers – Laurence Shahlaei only achieved 9th in this year’s final but he came on so much in 12 months, that if he does the same again he could be a real force. Ervin Katona looked great in the heats, especially when considering it was his first appearance in World’s Strongest Man. More experience could see this guy a long way.

I think the 2010 heats will be fantastic, and the 10 guys who make it through to the final will have done so from working damn hard. To that end we could see one of the most competitive WSM finals ever – that’s a huge win for us, the fans!

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The World’s Strongest Man 2009 final was broadcast 4 days ago (in the UK), so now it’s time to look a bit closer at the numbers and see what we can gleam from that. First of all let’s look at the points scored by all competitors across all the events. You can click the image for a bigger, more legible version.

World's Strongest Man 2009 Final Results

One thing that stands out immediately is the 3 event victories by eventual winner Zydrunas Savickas, and when you see that he was runner up in a further 2 it’s clear that he was destined to lift this year’s trophy. If it wasn’t for such a poor performance in the Boat Pull, where he placed 8th, then his lead would have been even more than the 5 points it ended up being.

Of the 4 events that Savickas didn’t win, there were 4 different winners, which just go to show how open the field was this year. While it’s surprising after the last 6 years that Mariusz Pudzianowski was only victorious in 1 event, it’s just as surprising to me, given his form in last year’s final, the Giants Live Tour and his heat, that Derek Poundstone didn’t win any of the 7 events. In fact I’m surprised that Poundstone only finished 4th. Was he performing at his highest level or were the others just that much better on a more consistent basis?

Although he suffered from the flu during the heats, and it’s possible he hadn’t recovered by the time of the final, Travis Ortmayer was so good across all the other events that just one place better in the Giant farmer’s Walk, where he came last, would have seen him overtake Poundstone for 4th place overall. In fact a few more places better and he’d have climbed up to 3rd place and snatched Brian Shaw’s podium place. Speaking of Brian Shaw, what a fantastic performance in his first ever World’s Strongest Man final. The other competitors just have to hope there is no Boat Pull in World’s Strongest Man 2010 or that’s a guaranteed 10 points for Shaw – he’s that good.

The first 6 places are not too far apart, but the gap between Terry Hollands in 6th and Phil Pfister in 7th was a massive 12.5 points. Phil Pfister is no first timer at World’s Strongest Man, if you remember he famously beat Mariusz Pudzianowski in 2007 to become the champion. The level of competition was furiously high for World’s Strongest Man 2009, and Pfister’s points haul is clear evidence of that.

After looking at the numbers I was interested to see how the positions changed from event to event as the final progressed, so I plotted all the numbers into Excel and this is what we get. As before, click the image for a bigger version.

World's Strongest Man 2009 Final Progress

What stands out straight away is that only 2 competitors stayed in the same position throughout the duration of the final; Zydrunas Savickas in 1st, and Louis-Philippe Jean in 10th. In fact there wasn’t a great deal of position changing, most notable is Dave Ostlund’s gradual decline from his 2nd place finish in the Fingal’s Fingers to his eventual 8th place finish.

Travis Ortmayer dropped considerably after coming last in the Giant Farmer’s Walk but you can see how he claws his way back to 5th place after the Overhead Lift, where he stayed until the very end. Looking at the graph, after his disastrous (by his standards) 6th place finish in Fingal’s Fingers, Mariusz Pudzianowski was the most consistent performer. Had he performed better in that first event the whole competition could have gone a very different way, the psychological factor can never be under-estimated in World’s Strongest Man.

It’s interesting to see that after the Boat Pull the only position changes were that of Lauence Shahlaei overtaking Dave Ostlund for 8th place after the Deadlift, and then Ostlund retaking that 8th position again after the Atlas Stones. Those two aside, the positions for the 8 competitors stayed the same from the after the Boat Pull to the end.

If I can get access to the individual event results from previous competitions then I’d like to analyse those in a similar fashion. If you have those results then please email me or leave a comment. Any feedback, as always, is gratefully appreciated – I hope you enjoyed this different look at the World’s Strongest Man 2009 final, I know I did!

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So here we are, the culmination of 5 gruelling heats and the showdown we’ve all been waiting for. Would Pudzianowski get his 6th title? Would Poundstone go one better than his 2nd place of last year? Would Savickas improve on his three 2nd place finishes? Would Hollands or Shahlaei be the first Brit to win since Gary Taylor in 1993? So many questions, but only one thing was certain – in 60 minutes time we would know who the World’s Strongest Man 2009 champion!

Here are the 10 men in this year’s final, in order of how they qualified:

Derek Poundstone
Louis-Philippe Jean
Zydrunas Savickas
Brian Shaw
Mariusz Pudzianowski
Phil Pfister
Laurence Shahlaei
Travis Ortmayer
Terry Hollands
Dave Ostlund

Gone was the Medley as the first event from the heats, and straight into one of the toughest events in World’s Strongest Man – Fingal’s Fingers. What became clear right from the start is that with only an hour of broadcast time, which included advert breaks, we weren’t going to see all the guys compete in every event – in fact in a lot of the events we didn’t see most of the competitors’ efforts.

I had perennial favourites Dave Ostlund, Phil Pfister and Brian Shaw pegged as the front runners in this event and to a certain extent I was right, with Ostlund coming in 2nd and Shaw 3rd. However, up against Savickas, Phil Pfister could only manage 7th place. Savickas blew the field away by coming in first and beating Ostlund’s time in a new world record of 28.69 seconds.

Fingal's Fingers - Savickas v Pfister

The full results looked like this: 1st – Savickas, 2nd – Ostlund, 3rd – Shaw, 4th – Ortmayer, 5th – Poundstone, 6th – Pudzianowski, 7th – Pfister, 8th – Hollands, 9th – Shahlaei & 10th – Jean.

The 2nd event was the Giant Farmer’s Walk which saw some guys struggle quite badly, to the point where I wondered if the huge weights were too much. They were carrying 25 stone in each hand, maybe a drop down to 22 or 23 stone would have seen more people finish in a decent time and make the gaps between their times smaller. Pudzianowski dominated with a time of 25.05 seconds which was over 5 seconds faster than 2nd placed Poundstone. Worth a mention was Shahlaei in 3rd place, which in itself was a fantastic performance.

Giant Farmer's Walk

In the above picture you can see Terry Hollands coming in 2nd in his round of 5 competitors – he was in 1st but about 15 metres from the finish he stopped, allowing Poundstone to overtake. While Hollands did finish, we saw later that his hands has been torn to shreds by the handles of these huge weights.

Full results: 1st – Pudzianowski, 2nd – Poundstone, 3rd – Shahlaei, 4th – Savickas, 5th – Pfister, 6th – Hollands, 7th – Shaw, 8th – Jean, 9th – Ostlund & 10th – Ortmayer.

Points table now looked like this: 1st – Savickas (17), 2nd Poundstone (15), 2nd – Poundstone (15), 4th – Shaw (12), 5th – Ostlund (11), 6th – Shahlaei (10), 6th – Pfister (10), 8th – Hollands (8), 8th – Ortmayer (8) & 10th – Jean (4).

Terry Hollands pulling a plane!

If you had just injured your hands, can you even begin to imagine using the same hands to pull on a massive rope whilst tied to a plane in an attempt to pull that 44 tonne plane? That’s what Terry Hollands did in a time of 38.19 seconds – that was over 2 seconds quicker than Savickas in second which even by fully fit standards is astonishing. Add in the injury factor it’s almost impossible, but Hollands did it.

Full results: 1st – Hollands, 2nd – Savickas, 3rd – Ortmayer, 3rd – Shaw, 5th – Pudzianowski, 6th – Poundstone, 7th – Pfister, 8th – Ostlund, 9th – Shahlaei & 10th – Jean.

Points table now looked like this: 1st – Savickas (26), 2nd – Pudzianowski (21), 3rd – Poundstone (20), 4th – Shaw (19.5), 5th – Hollands (18), 6th – Ortmayer (15.5), 7th – Ostlund (14), 7th – Pfister (14), 9th – Shahlaei (12) & 10th – Jean (5).

The 4th event was the Overhead Lift but the coverage only allowed us 3 brief glimpses of the action and a total of 3 lifts – this event was obviously sacrificed for the necessary time taken up by advert breaks.

Full results: 1st – Savickas, 2nd – Poundstone, 2nd – Pudzianowski, 4th – Ortmayer, 5th – Shaw, 6th – Jean, 6th – Pfister, 8th – Ostlund, 9th – Hollands & 9th Shahlaei.

Points table now looked like this: 1st – Savickas (36), 2nd – Pudzianowski (29.5), 3rd – Poundstone (28.5), 4th – Shaw (25.5), 5th – Ortmayer (22.5), 6th – Hollands (19.5), 7th – Pfister (18.5), 8th – Ostlund (17), 9th – Shahlaei (13.5) & 10th Jean (9.5).

The 5th event was an event that is a bit of a throwback to World’s Strongest Man competitions of old – the Boat Pull. It is what it says – the competitors have to pull a boat up an incline using a very thick rope. Pudzianowski made up some important points here as he gained 2nd place compared to Savickas in 8th. The event was won by Shaw, and very impressively too.

Brian Shaw wins the Boat Pull

Full results: 1st – Shaw, 2nd – Pudzianowski, 3rd – Ortmayer, 4th – Hollands, 5th – Pfister, 6th – Shahlaei, 7th – Poundstone, 8th – Savickas, 9th – Ostlund & 10th – Jean.

Points table now looked like this: 1st – Savickas (39), 2nd – Pudzianowski (38.5), 3rd – Shaw (35.5), 4th – Poundstone (32.5), 5th – Ortmayer (30.5), 6th – Hollands (26.5), 7th – Pfister (24.5), 8th – Ostlund (19), 9th – Shahlaei (18.5) & Jean (10.5).

Savickas beats Pudzianowski

This is not something we are accustomed to seeing – Pudzianowski on his knees, a beaten man. However, that is exactly what happened in the Deadlift as he and Poundstone tied 2nd with 9 lifts, while Savickas grabbed maximum points with 11 lifts. It was looking like the Lithuanian’s title to lose now, with only the Atlas Stones to go.

Full results: 1st – Savickas, 2nd – Pudzianowski, 2nd – Poundstone, 4th – Hollands, 4th – Shaw, 6th – Ortmayer, 7th – Shahlaei, 8th – Ostlund, 9th – Jean & 10th – Pfister.

Points table now looked like this: 1st – Savickas (49), 2nd – Pudzianowski (47), 3rd – Shaw (42), 4th – Poundstone (41), 5th – Ortmayer (35.5), 6th – Hollands (33), 7th – Pfister (24.5), 8th – Shahlaei (22.5), 9th – Ostlund (22) & Jean (12.5).

The last event, as ever, was the Atlas Stones and one in which Savickas could win his first title, or Pudzianowski could win his 6th. With only a point between them, there was also a battle between Shaw and Poundstone for the 3rd podium spot.

Savickas puts down The 5th Stone

The Atlas Stones was won by Travis Ortmayer, as is to be expected, but Savickas got 2nd while Pudzianowski came 5th which meant that for the first time Zydrunas Savickas was the World’s Strongest Man. Shaw coming 4th in this event also meant he kept hold of 3rd place over all. Terry Hollands made an impressive late surge to come 3rd in the Atlas Stones – I truly believe there is a World’s Strongest Man title in this man’s future.

Full results: 1st – Ortmayer, 2nd – Savickas, 3rd – Hollands, 4th – Shaw, 5th – Pudzianowski, 6th – Poundstone, 7th – Pfister, 8th – Ostlund, 9th – Jean, 10th – Shahlaei.

The final standings for the World’s Strongest Man 2009 were as follows:

1st – Zydrunas Savickas – 58 points
2nd – Mariusz Pudzianowski – 53 points
3rd – Brian Shaw – 49 points
4th – Derek Poundstone – 46 points
5th – Travis Ortmayer – 45.5 points
6th – Terry Hollands – 41 points
7th – Phil Pfister – 28.5 points
8th – Dave Ostlund – 25 points
9th – Laurence Shahlaei – 23.5 points
10th – Louis-Philippe Jean – 14.5 points

This was one of the most stacked finals I have ever seen, with a higher level of strength than there has possibly been in any other strongman event before. I was disappointed that we only saw 40 minutes of action thanks to the advert breaks – either increase the length of the broadcast or reduce the number of competitors down to 8 like they used to have. However, if they decide to release a FULL version of the final on DVD, with some footage from the heats, then count me in for a copy.

We never got to see Savickas presented with his trophy, but we did at least see him with it:

Zydrunas Savickas - World's Strongest Man 2009

I’m counting the days until World’s Strongest Man 2010 and I’m looking forward to seeing guys like Poundstone, Ortmayer and Hollands come back and challenge for the title – all are capable of winning.

Now the final has been broadcast I can point you in the direction of a few treats on the official World’s Strongest Man website:

Interview with the World’s Strongest Man 2009 – Zydrunas Savickas
Blog published from Malta during World’s Strongest Man 2009
Photo gallery from World’s Strongest Man 2009

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