CLARKSON — One of the nation's most difficult strength competitions will find itself in Clarkson this month.
"Patriot Strongman Challenge II," sanctioned by the U.S. Strongman organization, will take place at Clarkson High School on Saturday, Sept. 21.
The event is hosted by Clarkson resident Travis Cinfel, who himself competes in strongman competitions.
"I entered my first strongman competition in 2017 over in Davenport, Iowa, and loved it," Cinfel said. "I had then competed in two competitions in Alliance, Nebraska. All the events I could find were very long drives for me so I decided to host my own to give people in this area an opportunity to experience the sport of strongman."
Cinfel's event has divisions separated into teen, novice and masters, which is for individuals 40 years or older. Open classes include lightweight, middleweight, heavyweight and superheavyweight for both men and women.
Scoring in each division is determined by a combination of five events: axle press, farmer’s deadlift, truck pull, carry medley and log press.
During the axle press, from the ground, competitors pick up a barbell that is 2 inches in diameter. The barbell is then brought to the shoulders and pressed overhead for max weight.
Each competitor is granted three attempts.
In the farmer's deadlift, "farmer handles" are lifted from the ground, with the weight of each handle varying by division. Once the competitor is standing fully erect with the handle, a rep is counted. The goal for competitors is to maximize the amount of reps they get in 60 seconds.
The truck pull, which Cinfel noted would actually be tractor pulling, requires competitors to be seated with their feet braced.
The competitors then pull a tractor toward themselves via rope, and the competitor who pulls the tractor over a 75-foot distance the fastest will win.
The carry medley encompasses competitors carrying a loaded keg and sandbag one at a time across a 50-foot duck walk as fast as they can. The weights of each implement will vary depending on division and weight class.
In the log press competition, a log bar will be loaded to a weight, then cleaned from the ground and pressed for a max amount of reps in 75 seconds. For this event, weights also vary by division and weight class.
The points an individual competitor may compile varies based on how many participants are in each division. If there are 10 competitors in a weight class, the first-place participant receives 10 points, the second-place finisher earns nine points and so on. The first-place competitor in a five-man weight class would earn five points.
Points from the entirety of the five events are totaled in each weight class and awards are given to the top finishers.
Last year, 13 individuals competed in Patriot Strongman Challenge and as of Thursday, 24 individuals were signed up to compete for this year's competition.
The competition starts at 10 a.m. on Sept. 21. Cinfel said anyone is welcome to sign up the same day of the event and compete, but one must sign up for a U.S. Strongman membership.
A membership fee is $30 yearly. The entry fee for Patriot Strongman Challenge II is $50 ($25 for current and former military and first responders).
A pulled pork meal will be served during the event, with proceeds benefiting the Clarkson Christian Daycare under construction.