Featuring over 30 participants, the 2023 World’s Strongest Man contest wrapped up this past weekend in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. So, in a recent Big Loz YouTube video, former Europe’s Strongest Man (ESM) champ, Laurence Shahlaei, and his wife, Liz Mason, broke down 15 stats about the WSM competition.
The 2023 World’s Strongest Man took place from Apr. 19-23 with over 30 contenders from 14 nations making their way to the event. There were several notable names on the roster, including Ukrainian sensation Oleksii Novikov, the British strongman brothers ,Tom and Luke Stoltman, and legendary 4x champion Brian Shaw.
Ahead of the show, Shaw announced it would be his final appearance at the WSM contests. Having won the title on four occasions (2011, 2013, 2015, and 2016), Shaw was looking to level the record of five-time WSM winner Mariusz Pudzianowski. However, he underwent surgery and nearly lost his leg in preparation for the competition, but managed to recover fully in time. In the end, Shaw finished in seventh place.
Maxime Boudreault was planning to participate in the event, but got forced to withdraw due to a fracture in his shin bone caused by an incident two months ago. Pavlo Nakonechnyy was also gearing up to make his maiden appearance at the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. Unfortunately, he picked up a knee injury and pulled out of the event a few weeks ago. America’s Thomas Evans got the chance to replace Nakonechnyy.
Following a very successful qualifying round, Jaco Schoonwinkel ended up getting injured on day one of the finals after trying to perform an overhead press of 115-kg (253.5 pounds). The setback appeared to be serious as it forced him to the sidelines. Meanwhile, Mitchell Hooper took the lead early with Novikov and Tom in the distance behind him. Following the second day, Hooper emerged as the winner of the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. He secured the coveted title in his second showing at the event. Tom slotted in second place with Novikov taking bronze.
15 Stats & Facts about the 2023 World’s Strongest Man
In a recent YouTube video, Laurence Shahlaei and Liz Mason shared their analysis of the 2023 World’s Strongest Man with 15 stats.
- The first time a contender won four final events out of six — Mitchell Hooper delivered an incredible performance throughout the whole contest. He won eight events combined; four in his group in the Qualifying stage and another four out of six events in the Final. His win in the Reign Shield Carry was a result of Pavlo Kordiyaka getting his performance docked, which pushed him down the rankings. However, Hooper is the first man to win four events since the six-event format has been introduced to the WSM
- Top 3 featured contenders from three different nations for the 11th year in a row — Champion Hooper represented Canada in first place whereas Tom Stoltman represented the UK. Novikov, however, carried the flag of Ukraine to round up the podium at the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. It marked the 11th year in a row where each of the top three finishers was from a different country.
- Two athletes tied in a timed event — Tom and Evan Singleton both recorded a time of 32.27 seconds to get second place in the Bus Pull event. It’s only the second time in the WSM history that two contestants clocked in at the exact same time, down to one-hundredth of a second. Previously, Travis Ortmayer and Brian Shaw tied in the Plane Pull event at the 2009 WSM.
- Two Ukrainians were in the Final — The Final featured two Ukrainians for the first time ever. 2020 WSM champ Novikov extended his impressive run with another Final appearance and Kordiyaka entered the finals in only his second showing at the contest.
- New Zealand gets the first athlete in the Final — Mathew Ragg created history by being the first athlete to represent New Zealand in the finals at the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. Eventually, he placed ninth behind Brian Shaw and Luke Stoltman, respectively, after Schoonwinkel’s withdrawal.
- Three WSM wins in a row were missed for the fifth consecutive time — Former champion Tom Stoltman was targeting to score the third straight win at the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. It marked the ninth time an athlete attempted the feat and the fifth time straight it did not work out. Only Bill Kazmaier and Magnus ver Magnusson hold the honors of winning three in a row. Since Stoltman got dethroned by Hooper, he missed out on the three-peat.
- Three USA athletes in the final — There have been three athletes that represented the USA in the Final in every edition of the show since 2017. Veteran Brian Shaw, Trey Mitchell, and Evan Singleton continued the impressive streak for their native land by featuring in the finals of the WSM this year as well.
- Canada joins the list of countries with a WSM champ — The country of Canada got its first WSM champion in Mitchell Hooper this year. They become the 13th country to win gold in the history of the event. Previously, Tom Mcgee came close with a runner-up finish but it wasn’t until Hooper’s win that Canada joined the list. Countries with WSM winners: U.S.A., UK, Iceland, Netherlands, Wales, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Scotland, and Canada.
- Hooper becomes the eighth youngest winner ever — Mitch Hooper became the eighth youngest winner of the WSM competition at the age of 27-years-old. Out of a total of 24 champions, Jon Pall Sigmarsson holds the record for being the youngest winner ever at 24-years-old, with Novikov in second at 24 as well.
- All 2nd place athletes retained an advantage in the Stone-Off — Every athlete in second place managed to retain their advantage in the stone-off. The format came into effect in 2021. 13 of the 15 athletes who did the stone-off in second place made it through to the final. The only two exceptions were Kevin Faires and Bobby Thompson at the 2022 WSM.
- Hooper turned in a strong performance but did not beat the best — Hooper turned in a strong performance with four event wins in the Final. However, it was not the most dominant performance ever seen in the history of the WSM competitions. Mariusz Pudzianowski pulled off the most convincing victory of any athlete with 66 out of a possible 70 points (94.3%) in 2003.
- Hooper’s international streak continues — After making his International debut at the previous WSM, Mitch Hooper continued his dominant run of getting a podium finish in every international competition he participated in, which is 90 percent. Out of the 10 he competed in, he came out on top of 5 of those and had only been out of the podium once.
- Shaw and Heinla set a new record for Stone-Offs — Shaw and Rauno Heinla went up against each other in the Stone-Off event to qualify for the Final. Both athletes set the record for the most reps performed in the contest, having lifted 11 stones each. While they both lifted 11 stones each, Shaw won as Heinla was the first one unable to lift the stone anymore.
- Shaw sets history with 15th straight qualifications to the Final — Brian Shaw left no stone unturned in his final WSM appearance. He created history by qualifying for his 15th consecutive final, the most of any athlete ever. He also raised his record for the most WSM event wins to 62 with a win at the Kettlebell Toss.
- Mark Felix becomes the oldest WSM participant — Mark Felix set the record for the oldest man ever to compete at the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. He participated in the group stage at the age of 57 years and two days old. He also broke his own record for the most appearances at WSM with his 18th appearance at the event.
2023 World’s Strongest Man Mitchell Hooper gave fans a look into the first training session after the 2023 World’s Strongest Man. Although it was just a light workout focused on getting a pump, it signals that Hooper is already getting prepared for his next competitions.
You can watch the full video below.
2023 WSM Contest Coverage
- 2023 World’s Strongest Man Results
- 2023 World’s Strongest Man Results — Day Two Finals
- 2023 World’s Strongest Man Results — Finals Day One
- 2023 World’s Strongest Man Results — Day One Qualifiers
- 2023 World’s Strongest Man Results — Day Two Qualifiers
Discover comprehensive coverage of the 2023 World’s Strongest Man competition at our WSM coverage hub, featuring exclusive interviews, final results, event recaps and in-depth analysis: FitnessVolt.com/wsm
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