5 Prime Contenders to Watch on the 2023 World’s Strongest Man

This week, the person of the hour on the 2023 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) in Myrtle Seaside, SC, will possible be Tom Stoltman. The 2-time reigning champion seeks to develop into solely the third individual ever to seize three straight WSM titles. Nonetheless, with a loaded roster and stacked gauntlet of events standing in his means, Stoltman should overcome some difficult obstacles to defend his place on the prime of strongman and rating a legendary WSM victory.

Extra from Breaking Muscle:

From Stoltman’s hallowed pursuit of all-time strongman historical past to the final experience for one of many sport’s all-time legends, listed below are 5 prime 2023 WSM contenders to look at in Myrtle Seaside the weekend of April 19-23.

Tom Stoltman

  • Most notable accomplishment: Two-time WSM champion (2020-2021)

Stoltman is chasing historical past few have ever touched.

It’s been virtually three many years because the final three-peat within the WSM. Icons like Poland’s Mariusz Pudzianowski and Lithuania’s Žydrūnas Savickas got here near the accomplishment within the early elements of the twenty first century however finally fell brief. America’ Invoice Kazmaier (1980-1982) and Iceland’s Magnús Ver Magnússon (1994-1996) stay the one males to attain this hallowed strongman feat.

With a win within the 2023 WSM, Stoltman would be part of them. On this particular respect, he may have surpassed Pudzianowski, Savickas, and one other residing legend in Brian Shaw. He may have eclipsed each strongman to have repeated as WSM champion, however who couldn’t take it one other step additional.

Quite a bit is on the road for the Scottish celebrity. He may rise as much as meet the second.

Mitchell Hooper

If there’s a strongman who appears destined for WSM greatness, the dialog most likely begins and ends with Mitchell Hooper. The Canadian athlete first burst onto the scene when he blitzed the 2022 WSM Qualifying Round. Whereas Hooper finally misplaced fuel within the Last, it was obvious he was a part of the way forward for the game. Ever since, he’s lived as much as the hype and blazed a path straight by means of the center of strongman.

Per Strongman Archives, Hooper has certified for the rostrum in every of his final eight strongman appearances because the 2022 WSM. Furthermore, he’s gained 4 of his final 5 contests, together with the 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic UK (ASCUK), the 2022 Giants Live World Tour Finals, the 2023 Australia’s Strongest International, and the 2023 ASC.

Ought to somebody like Stoltman drop even a bit of bit off in efficiency close to the highest, it will be honest to imagine that somebody red-hot like Hooper steps as much as fill within the hole. Profitable his first profession WSM title can be an ideal option to cap Hooper’s latest run of sheer dominance.

Brian Shaw

  • Most notable accomplishment: 4-time WSM champion (2011, 2013, 2015-2016)

Throughout, 2023 is shaping as much as be an emotional and seminal second in Shaw’s strongman profession. The 2023 WSM is not going to solely be his last appearance in the flagship strongman contest — the following 2023 Shaw Traditional will probably be the legend’s last-ever professional strongman competition. That’s proper: Within the subsequent few months, Shaw will raise his final Atlas Stone.

In a aggressive setting, anyway.

Shaw seems to be reveling in his farewell tour, and justifiably so. He educated with the five other American strongmen participating in the 2023 WSM and is hoping a latest leg an infection is a harbinger of coming good luck based on his past competitive precedent. If Shaw wins a fifth WSM title, he’ll match Pudzianowski for essentially the most all-time.

That’d be one heck of a option to pen a closing chapter in his resume.

Extra from Breaking Muscle:

Mateusz Kieliszkowski

  • Most notable accomplishment: WSM runner-up (2018-2019)

The final anybody noticed Kieliszkowski in a WSM setting was virtually 4 years in the past, through the 2019 version. The “Polish Terminator” had simply capped a second-consecutive runner-up end, making it seem his ascent to strongman’s tallest summit can be inevitable within the 2020s. Nonetheless, accidents and their problems would muddle issues for Kieliszkowski. A late withdrawal from the 2022 WSM made it unclear when he’d once more thrive amongst a number of the globe’s strongest athletes.

After a latest 32-ton (64,000 kilos) truck pull in coaching, Kieliszkowski has professed he doesn’t have excessive expectations for his official return to the WSM. A sterling runner-up end within the 2023 ASC — his first strongman look in over two years — says in any other case. When the mud settles, Kieliszkowski may not win the 2023 WSM. The five-time Poland’s Strongest Man (PSM) champion’s (2015-2019) analysis of his personal capability might be extra correct than any outdoors perspective.

That stated, counting his possibilities out on paper may very well be a large mistake.

Oleksii Novikov

  • Most notable accomplishment: WSM champion (2020)

If one regarded up the definition of consistency in a dictionary, it wouldn’t be shocking to see an image of a roaring Novikov. In response to Strongman Archives, the Ukrainian competitor has certified for the rostrum in 18 out of 20 strongman competitions relationship again to September 2020. He has recorded seven victories in that very same time span, together with a 2022 Europe’s Strongest Man (ESM) title and a triumph within the 2022 Rogue Invitational. Consider Novikov’s WSM title to start the last decade, and it’s abundantly clear he has the pedigree so as to add one other WSM notch to his already loaded belt of strength accomplishments.

Sadly, a lat muscle tear might limit Novikov’s capacity to thrive beneath strongman’s brightest “lights.” It didn’t appear to have an effect on Novikov’s 2023 ESM runner-up performance in early April, however the severity of the possibly lingering damage is unconfirmed. Whereas purely hypothesis, a more healthy Novikov might need made it back-to-back ESM victories.

If Novikov is near 100%, he’ll possible be a big participant working towards the 2023 WSM title till the curtains come up. His general well being standing might decide whether or not Novikov wins outright or “solely” data one other podium end.

2023 World’s Strongest Man Roster

Right here’s a whole have a look at the complete lineup of rivals on this yr’s contest.

A WSM Battle for the Ages

None of those predictions and insights are to say that different rivals on the 30-person roster for the 2023 WSM roster don’t have an opportunity. It’s extra that the defending champion (Stoltman), the one different earlier WSM winners within the competitors (Shaw, Novikov), a younger celebrity (Hooper), and a longtime darkish horse in his return (Kieliszkowski) might current the absolute best possibilities for a win.

When the 2023 WSM weekend attracts to an in depth in Myrtle Seaside, it wouldn’t be a far cry to see this group of 5 males create fireworks.

Featured picture: @shawstrength on Instagram

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