first_imgLetterkenny is set to be a ‘stronghold’ of activity this weekend as the town hosts Europe’s Strongest Man contest – a real first for Donegal.More than 5,000 people are expected to visit Letterkenny for the event which will see competitors come from as far away as Norway to complete.The event is being jointly organised by former UK and World Strongman Dave Warner of Renegade Strongman in association with local fitness instructor, Nigel Drein of Motiv8 Fitness, with the Letterkenny Town Council on board as main sponsors. As well as being a huge draw for the people of Co Donegal, the event will also showcase Letterkenny and Donegal as television channel Setanta is also broadcasting the event live.Speaking ahead of the event co-organiser Dave Warner, says the fact that the entire weekend is free looks set to bring people out in their droves.“This will be a fantastic event, with international appeal and we are delighted to have the opportunity to bring it to Letterkenny. Set to attract up to 5,000 people, it will be an action packed weekend and FREE day out for all the family to enjoy.”Associate partners involved are Watson Hire, Diver’s Hyundai, Vikingr Clothing, the Clanree Hotel, Green Light Media, Raphoe Marquee Hire, official food partners The Vestry and official media partner Donegal Daily who will be keeping you up to date with coverage of the strongman activities over the two day event. Media Box are official PR partners for Europe’s Strongest Man under 90KG Finals. Managing Director Joanne Sweeney Burke says, “We are delighted to come on board to support this unique sporting event which will give Letterkenny a great boost.”Co-organiser Nigel Drein of Motiv8 Fitness says, “We are delighted to have the support of our associate partners and event sponsors in making this event, the first of it’s kind, a great success. Thank you to you all for coming on board and we look forward to a great sporting weekend”Up to 12 national winners from across Europe will descend on Letterkenny in a bid to lift the title of Europe’s Strongest Man Under 90kg 2012.A series of high-octane events will take place, kicking off tomorrow (FRI) at the Clanree Hotel at 7pm with the introduction of Europe’s Strongest Man Under 90kg.The first event getting under way at 7.30pm will be the ‘The Dead Lift – Sponsored by Hyundai. This event is a simple test of maximum power, lifting two huge axle wheels on a bar, rising and rising in weight until just one competitor is left. No suits or power shorts. (Belts – knee wraps permitted). The second event Conan’s Circle Sponsored by CBM Signs will get under way at 8pm. This event involves using a quad bike in the circle – farthest distance wins. (320kg). Day two of events will take place in the Bernard McGlinchey Park, Letterkenny from 12pm until 5pm. Activities will commence with the Opening Event at 1.00pm where Laurence Shahlai, also known as Loz, former World Strong Man Finalist and current joint holder of the Strongman deadlift world record, will act as MC and Event Presenter. The strongman finalists will be introduced and their 12 little mascots will accompany each finalist out onto the main platform, preceded by the Marching Band.Darren Sadler, nick-named Pocket Rocket and former World Strong Man will act as Head Referee for the high-octane competitor events as follows:1.15pm – Sponsored by Kelly’s Mountain Top Carry & Drag – A giant duck walk 215kg is lifted and carried 15 meters and is placed in a steel sledge. The sledge is then dragged back to the line. The fastest time or longest distance wins. This is a head-to-head event1.45pm- Sponsored by Paddy Snacks Press Medley – Dumbell – 75kg – axle 115kg log 130 kg 110kg steel block fastest time wins. Zuma Girls performance2.15pm Sponsored by LK Glass Beer Barrel Carry – 135kg filled beer barrel carried for a set distance. This is a head to head event.2.45pm – Sponsored by Sign of the Times Arm Over Arm – A rope pull event. We hope to pull a 4 X 4 & trailer or a motor home. This event takes place on grass over 20m distance.Pipe Band performance3.15pm – Sponsored by VikingR Clothing Squat – Each competitor lifts and squats with 210kg of steel train wheels. Highest number of reps wins. No suits or power shorts. Belts – knee wraps permitted.3.45pm – Sponsored by Watson Hire Stones of Strength – This is a head-to-head event where progressively heavier stones are lifted onto a platform. A head-to-head finale event will take place whereby stones are lifted onto a 4ft x 10ft platform. Heaviest stone 160kg.Zumba Girls performance4.15pm – Winner presentation – (we have amazing trophy and a winner’s sword – plus cash prizes)Medals presentation to all participants5.30pm Prizes, photographs and autographsSetanta Sports will broadcast Europe’s Strongest Man Finals Under 90kg taking place in Letterkenny on the weekend of 14-15 September. Regular updates on event activities can also be found on, associate media parter of Europe’s Strongest Man Finals Under 90kg.Don’t miss out on all the action logon to or follow us on Facebook and Twitter @ESMU90.THE COMPETITORS …THE COMPETITORS…THE COMPETITORSGavin Redmond aged 28 from Wexford. He’s an Architectural Technician weighing in at 90kg.“I have always been interested in weights even from young age. When I was 16 I joined a gym and never looked back. A few years later I realised that I would like to compete in something in the lines of weightlifting. I looked into powerlifting and bodybuilding but they just weren’t for me. One day,by chance, I went to a strongman competition and was surprised to find out that I was able to do some of the lifts in my own training. I had never considered training and competing in strongman because I always thought that its for huge guys lifting next to impossible weights. I was happy to find out that there are different weight categories and the under 90s suited me perfectly. I entered and won my first competition in 2011. It was a very small one but gave me the confidence and experience to continue on and enter and win the Republic of Ireland strongest man under 90 kg for two years in a row. I am only a new competitor with just under 2 years of experience and looking forward to the future that strongman world has to offer.”3Best lifts in competition:Frame carry-275kg for 20mSuperyoke-320kg for 20mPartial deadlift-290kgArram Eghoyan aged 28 from Chingford, is a PE Teacher. Height: 5ft 9. Weight: 87kg.“In the past I have competed in Powerlifting in the 82.5kg bodyweight class winning 7 World titles. This is only my second year doing Strongman. In my first year I finished 2nd at England’s Strongest Man u90kg, in my second year I finished 1st. I aim to push myself in International competitions and improve as a Strongman with each competition I do. I am a perfectionist when it comes to competing, and will always strive for the best possible performance in each event. As this is all relatively new to me, competitions often contain events I have never done before; I enjoy learning the science behind each event and working out the best way to train for it. I have had help from my sponsors NRG Fuel for which I’m incredibly grateful, they provide me with the highest quality supplements, allowing me to train and compete at a high intensity.”3 Competition History:2007 WPF Junior World Powerlifting Champion (82.5kg class)2010 WPF World Powerlifting Champion (82.5kg class)2011 England’s Strongest Manu 90kg Runner up2011 Britain’s Strongest Man u90kg 3rd place2012 England’s Strongest Man u90kg ChampionChris Jenkins from Wales.Best Equipped lifts :90kgSquat:372.5kgBench:240kgDeadlift:355kg82.5kgSquat 360kgBench 222.5kgDeadlift 322.5kgTitles:1999 NABBA junior Mr Wales (Barry Memorial Hall, Barry)1999 Welsh Open Karate champion mens / 90- kumite (Sophia Gardens, Cardiff)1999-2012 Welsh powerlifting champion (90kg)2000-2012 British powerlifting champion2006 GPC World powerlifting champion (90kg) (Ghent, Belgium)2008 WPC World powerlifting champion (82.5kg) (Palm Beach Gardens, Miami)2009 WPC World powerlifting champion (90kg) (Bournemouth, England)2009 silver medal, High Wycombe open judo championships (90kg)2009 silver medal, Swindon open judo championships (90kg)2011 Mr Olympia Pro invitational champion (100kg) (Las Vegas, Nevada)2012 Wales Strongest Man u90kg (Camarthen showground, Wales)James Ward 27 from Luton, England. Height: 5’9. Weight: 90kg“Three years ago I challenged myself by entering the Southern Qualifier for England’s Strongest Man under 90kg. I was fed up of weight training with no goals. I was drawn to the sport and wanted to see what I could achieve. I qualified for England’s final and went on to win the title Britain’s Strongest Man 2010 and 2011. One of the lifts that I enjoy the most and probably took to most naturally was log lifting, setting a personal best of 160kg in training in the latter part of 2011 I took part in the Log Lifting Championships and was able set an English and World Record for the under 90kgs with a lift 0f 151.1kg. My goals for the future are simple, to get stronger and improve as a Strongman and enjoy myself whilst doing so.”Yngve Raknerud aged 26 from Norway. He has a Batchelor in Physiotherapy and is currently studying to be an Engineer in electronics.“I started training strongman for 1 year ago after a long career in another sport. After 4months of training I placed fourth in Norway’s strongest man. 3 months later I got the official Norwegian record in atlas stone (180kg) and in apollons (130kg). After a year I competed at the Norwegian championship in single exercises. Here I won lifting 190 kg atlas stone to 1.05 meter at a bodyweight of 87,5 kg. I also placed second in log lift with 123 kg. In Yoke i placed 4th with 345 kg 5m.”Eduard Khanjyan from Finland. Born on 12.10.1985Length: 172cmWeight: 88kgFinnish Weightlifting Championships (Men’s division 2x 3rd, Juniors 5x gold.) Scandinavian Weightlifting Championships in juniors 2ndSquat: 260kgDeadlift 300kgShay Ryan. He’s a farmer by trade. Lives New Ross, Waterford. 2011 Under 90kg Champion – ( First ever to hold this title.) He pulled tug of war for Ireland in many world championships around over the world. Sweden, Africa, Japan. Currently representative of Ireland and all Ireland 105 champ. Very good at carry moving type event.Deadlift 285×2Squat 270 x 21 MINDAUGAS BRAZAUSKAS who will be competing in the ESM U90kg on the 14th & 15th of September.Date:1984/05/ 12From:Lithuania but now living in KilkennyHe came 3rd place in the Lithuania strongman competition under 105kg. His favourite events are db and log.Wallace Clarke aged 43. Born in Magherafelt, Co. Londonderry. Weights 86kgs. Height 5ft 7in. He is married with 3 daughters. He began Powerlifting at the age of 21 in the 75kg class. He was the Northern Ireland Champion for over 10 years and gained podium places in the British 75kg Powerlifting Championships. He was part of the team that won Four Nations Powerlifting Championships.Although he always had an interest, Wallace began his strongman career quite late in an athlete’s life, he competed in his first competition at the age of 37 in the 105kg Strongman competing against guys almost 30kgs heavier. When 90kg strongman was introduced, he didn’t look back. Wallace has gone on to represent Ireland twice at the British Under 90kg strongman finals.Wallace has a real love of the sport, and as long as he can stay injury free he hopes to keep competing.Favourite events: Car Deadlifting for Reps, Farmer’s Walk & YokeJeremy Vickers age 24 from Fort William Scotland. Currently working as a carpet fitter. He started weights when he was 19 and got into strongman 3 years ago. He has been runner up Scotland strongestman u90s the last 2 years and won it this year which he says was a dream come true. He also competed in the open Scotland strongestman which he qualified for in Feburay. He is looking forward to coming to Ireland with the other strongmen. His personal bests include 290 deadlift 260kg back squat x4reps 380 yoke 10 metersThomas White from Magherafelt, Northern Ireland. Weighing in at 90kg. Height 5’ 11”. Currently working as a Civil Servant. Enjoys Strongman, Powerlifting and Golf.13. Previous titles and achievements include:14. 2006 British Junior Powerlifting Championship – Winner – 82.5 kg class2009 Northern Ireland Deadlift Championship – Winner – 100kg class2009 Northern Ireland’s Strongest Man u105kg – 3rd2010 Northern Ireland Deadlift Championship – Winner – 100kg class2010 Northern Ireland’s Strongest Man u105kg – 3rd2011 Northern Ireland Deadlift Championship – Winner – 93kg class2011 Northern Ireland’s Strongest Man u90kg – Runner Up2011 Ireland’s Strongest Man u90kg – joint 3rd (forced to retire due to injury in the 5th event)2012 Ireland’s Strongest Man u90kg – Runner Up (following a wild card entry)Best lifts: 330kg in the Axle Deadlift. 150kg Atlas Stone onto a 4 foot platform15. Favourite events include deadlifting, Atlas stones and any arm-over-arm or pulling event.Shane Jerman, 22 years old, from Morecambe England. Height 5’7. Weight: 85kgSince a young age I have always loved challenging myself in sport and have always had a desire to be the best, whenever I find something I like I can’t help but look at the best in that area and strive to beat them, as long as I enjoy something I dedicate myself to it. My first big win in sport came at age 13 where I won the British u16 kumite in karate along with many other titles in martial arts up until 17 when I found the weights room.I had been training for a few years when a friend introduced me to strongman, I fell in love and competed in my first competition after 6 weeks of training and qualified for England’s Strongest Man u90kg, I ended up 7t h, looking back, to even qualify at that experience level was a huge achievement.The following year I qualified again and came 3rd on countback at England’s, I then won my first strongman competition The Olympic Dragons taking the title of “The Dragon” from my friend Kenny Cardwell. Since then I have won SAS classic u90kg, Northern England’s u90kg, Britain’s Strongest Man u80kg and came 2nd place in England’s Strongest Man u90kg I have never failed to hit the podium in the last 2 years of competing.I train with great strongmen in Ben France and Graham Hicks and have a great sponsor in VIKINGR and we are all close to achieving our long term goals and cannot wait to see what the future of strongman holds for us. Especially u90kg.Raw lifts305kg deadlift140kg log185kg bench press255kg squatAND NOT FORGETTING EUROPE’S STRONGEST LITTLE MASCOTS!Eleven children, aged between 4 and 17 years of age from throughout Donegal, will lead out Europe’s strongest men at the Europe’s Strongest Man Under 90KG finals taking place this weekend, September 14th and 15th in Letterkenny.Nominations detailed inspiring stories of some of Donegal’s strongest children who have shown great determination and resilience in their short lives to date, in ways that would put the strength of Europe’s strongest men to the test.Co-organiser Nigel Drein of Motiv8 Fitness says, “These children are nothing short of inspiring, who show strength that would challenge people four and five times their age. Some of these children have overcome barriers that we in all our years will never have met. We are delighted to have them involved in what will be a great sporting weekend and spectator event for all ages to enjoy.”Erin HarroldErin Harrold, is eight years old and from Ballybofey. She is in 2nd class in Dooish national school.She has two brothers Pauric aged 11 and Oisin aged 4 years. They love their sister and they always look out for her.Erin has spina bifida and is wheelchair bound. She is super active and can do anything she wants with her chair.Erin loves the limelight, shopping with mum and swimming. She is extremely photogenic as you can see and her Dad Kevin says, “she is a delight to have around. She will lift the spirits of anyone in her company.”Erin is the daughter of Kevin and Mary Harrold from Ballybofey.Livvy Curran“Livvy is a fun-loving, energetic child, who enjoys most things and is great to be around,” says her Dad Chris.Livvy is six years old and is from Ramelton. She is in 1st class in Scoil Mhuire in the town.Her Dad Chris says she deserves to be a mascot because “she enjoys sports but struggles to compete on the same level as her peers due to her condition Dyspraxia.”Dyspraxia is a difficulty with thinking, planning and carrying out sensory and motor tasks, affecting Livvy’s muscle tone, dexterity, speech intelligibility, balance and co-ordination.“We think Livvy would add her strength to the Europe’s Strongest Man Under 90kg Finals,” says her Dad Chris.Livvy is the daughter of Chris and Debbie Curran from Ramelton.Christian McCullaghWhen Christian McCullagh was born he was very ill. He spent 14 weeks in hospital.Christian suffered with a blocked bladder which meant his kidneys didn’t grow properly.Christian is now four years old and is from Raphoe. He just started playschool in September and is loving it.Christian is on dialysis five nights a week, for 10 hours a night. He has had 14 operations and procedures, and in March 2012 he got on the donor list.Christian’s Dad Gary is a match and has given up his work in order to give him one of his kidneys.Christian is peg feed and has to go to Dublin a lot. However, he has just started playschool.His mum Aileen says, ‘Christian is an inspiration and is always smiling. He has one big sister called Rocha.Christian is the son of Gary and Aileen McCullagh from Raphoe.Eoin McGinleyEoin Mc Ginley is 4 years old. Eoin was born at 26 weeks, weighing 700 grams in Fuerteventura where his Mum and Dad were on holidays. Sadly his twin brother Caolan only lived an hour.Eoin is from Drumbern in Milford and he just started pre-school last week.“We saw Eoin 24 hours after birth in a hospital in Las Palmas and he was fighting for his life and to me Eoin is stronger than any man of 90kgs, says his grandmother Bridget Wilhare.“Every day I see Eoin is a good day for me. He’s my pride and joy and when I think back on all that Eoin went through in those first four months of his life, I am in awe of the little guy.He is our “European Strong Man” as he was conceived in Austria, born in Spain and is really Irish!“If Eoin falls over and bumps/hurts himself, he never cried, he just gets up dusts himself down and rubs his head and gets on with whatever he was doing,” says Bridget.Eoin is the son of Brendan and Karen McGinley.Kyle GallagherKyle Gallagher is six years old and from Acres, Burtonport. He is a very energetic boy who loves all kind of sports and loves taking part in competitions.He is in high infants in St. Columba’s National School in Acres.Kyle would give anything a go and seldom dislikes anything. He has watched the Strongman competitions on TV recently and said to his Daddy, “some day I would like to be that strong and do what they do.”He took part in a superstars competition alongside his Dad Anthony, doing press ups at their local festival and he loved every minute of it.He is extremely competitive and gives 100% in everything that he does.His Day Anthony says, “it would be lovely for him to have the opportunity to be a mascot to see these strongmen in person and to watch them compete at the highest level.”Kyle is the son of Rosemary and Anthony Gallagher.Ruadhri McConigley“I nominate Ruadhri as a Strongman Mascot for the resilience he has shown and the pain he has suffered in his short life to date,” says his Dad Liam.Ruadhri is 14 years old and is a 3rd year student at Milford Community College.From two years of age Ruadhri has suffered from a condition called Scoliosis (severe curvature or spine). He attends Crumlin Hospital on a monthly basis to get a change of a full body plaster cast and this is done under anesthetic.He is due to have another operation at the end of year.“He struggles to recover at times, but he rarely complains,says his Dad.Ruadhri has been very keen to share his experiences of living with Scoliosis to other families through workshops organised by Crumlin Hospital.Ruadhri is the son of Liam and Margaret McConigley.Gavin FrielGavin Friel is nine years old and from Letterkenny. He is a character in every sense of the word. He is full of personality and is sure to bring a smile to the face of everyone he meets.A typical young boy, Gavin loves all things action and embraces every challenge to test his strength.His Mum Carolann Coyle says, “Gavin would be a great mascot as he is a little gentleman yet very strong willed and although he suffers from Asmatha, he does not let this hold him back in anyway.”Gavin is the son of Carolann Coyle and Paddy Friel.Cody LavertyCody Laverty is 10 years old and from Ballybofey. His Mum Cheryl says Cody would make an ideal mascot as he “embodies strength, determination and dedication, three key qualities that Europe’s Strongest men need to go head to head to lift the title.”A true sportsman in the making Cody plays rugby, football, and hurling for his local clubs. His determination was evident when he fractured both arms last year, yet returned to the training pitch eager to start the new season. He received the honour of player of the year on his return.Cody attends Sessiaghoneill National School in Ballybofey.He is the son of Cheryl and Barry Laverty from Ballybofey.Jake ColemanJake Coleman is six years old and from Stranorlar. He is a first class student at St Mary’s School, Stranorlar.Jake has big dreams and he tells his Dad Mick that he wants to be “a strongman, rockstar, dancer and also to play for Donegal when he grows up. Jake is a happy, outgoing, caring boy”He is the son of Michael and Paulina Coleman and he has one sister called Katie.Erin GallagherErin Gallagher is six years old and from Glenswilly. Erin was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia the week after her third birthday.She is a first class student at Glenswilly National School.Erin is now in remission and has just finished two and a half years of treatment. She attended Our Lady’s Hospital in Crumlin and spent many months at a time in hospital.Erin has been a true fighter over the past three years according to her Mum Colette.“What she has been through in the past three years was extremely tough. She has gone through more than some adults may go through in their entire lifetime and she just keeps smiling.”Erin is the daughter of Charlie and Colette Gallagher.Erika HigginsErika Higgins is nine years old and goes to Scoil Mhuire Gan Smal, Letterkenny.Her Mum Tina describes Erika as “happy to lucky and always happy.”“When Erika got her tonsils out she was in hospital for a few days. She was super courageous before and after her operation.”Tina says Erika is her best friend. “She is a kind lovably daughter who is always ready to dish out the hugs and kisses.“She is a great wee help with her 3 year old brother Matthew. She gets on great with all the children in her area and always looks out for them.”Erika loves horses and goes horse riding in her spare time. She is also a keen swimmer and goes every weekend to her lessons. Erika is a member of Encore Performing Arts Academy, she loves performing on stage and dancing around her room to one direction and Katy Perry.Erika is the daughter of Kieran and Tina Higgins from Letterkenny.EUROPE’S STRONGEST MAN EVENT TO DRAW HUGE CROWDS TO DONEGAL was last modified: September 13th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:European Strongest Manletterkennylast_img read more