Stoltman looks like a champion on a mission.
The 2023 strongman season hasn’t exactly gone according to plan for Tom Stoltman. The former two-time World’s Strongest Man (WSM) champion (2021-2022) not only lost a legendary “three-peat” to Mitchell Hooper, but also placed sixth during the 2023 Arnold Strongman Classic (ASC) and was the runner-up at the 2023 Giants Live Strongman Classic (GLSC) by a slim half-point margin. Now officially without a professional strongman victory in over a year, Stoltman’s win drought is the longest of his career since he initially ripped his way to the 2021 WSM title, per strong men archives.
On July 20, 2023, Stoltman shared a glimpse of how she’s preparing to break out of her recent competitive rut. The athlete posted a clip to Instagram. where he completed an 800-kilogram (1,763.7 lb) leg press. The revelatory feat of strength was even more impressive, considering that Stoltman he attached resistance bands to his machine and implemented breaks between reps for additional challenges. The lower body training session is part of Stoltman’s comprehensive preparation for the 2023 Shaw Classic (SC), which will take place August 19-20, 2023 in Loveland, CO.
A Car Leg Press is one of the flashier events of the 2023 SC, which is presumably what Stoltman’s preparation in the clip connects to. In the 2022 edition, competitors were tasked with performing maximum repetitions with a 2,000-pound (907-kilogram) car loaded on a custom-built leg press with the winning performance being 8 repetitions.
According to his Instagram profile, Stoltman is not in the habit of showing glimpses of his preparation before contests. In fact, most of Stoltman’s posts include competition highlights, photos, and collaborations with her older brother, Luke, a professional strongman. With Stoltman explaining what goes on behind the scenes, the athlete is seemingly deviating from the script and showing that he could mean business at SC 2023.
This would align with Stoltman’s reflective stance after the conclusion of WSM 2023, where he fell 4.5 points short of another historic title. Later, the strongman explained that he “gave everything he had” and was “proud” of his performance, but that ultimately it wasn’t enough to win.
SC 2023 will be Stoltman’s debut in the growing contest hosted by four-time WSM champion (2011, 2013, 2015-2016) Brian Shaw. If Stoltman wins on his debut, he will not only have defeated other notable competitors such as Hooper, WSM 2020 winner Oleksii Novikov and reigning two-time SC champion Trey Mitchell, but will also have earned himself the title of “The Strongest Man on Earth.”
That would be the way Stoltman would bounce back after a “slow” first half of 2023.
Here’s a full roster overview for the 2023 SC:
Shaw Classic 2023 Roster
- Trey Mitchell (United States) — Reigning two-time champion
- Brian Shaw (United States) — 2022 runner-up
- mitchell hooper (Canada) — 2022 third place
- Tom Stolman (United Kingdom)
- Lucas Stoltmann (United Kingdom)
- Oleksii Novikov (Ukraine)
- bobby thompson (USA)
- adam bishop (United Kingdom)
- graham hicks (United Kingdom)
- Pavlo Nakonechnyy (Ukraine)
- Thomas Evans (USA)
- Maxime Boudreault (Canada)
- kevin fairs (USA)
- Aivars Shmaukstelis (Latvia)
- Evan Singleton (USA)
- *Gavin Billton (UK) | *Replaces Mateusz Kieliszkowski
Here is a summary of the events of SC 2023:
Shaw Classic 2023 Events
- medley of logs
- Deadlift with Max Hummer Tires
- Mixture of truck and arm on arm
- stock market toss
- car leg press
- Atlas Stones
- Standing Bench Press
- Mixture of Fingal’s fingers and escalators
Including Shaw, Hooper and Novikov, Stoltman is notably one of four current or former WSM champions vying for the 2023 SC title.
The year 2023 hasn’t turned out quite as Stoltman originally envisioned, but it’s not too late to save it and make it memorable. This strongman superstar isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, and this leg press could be evidence of the tremendous power he’ll be displaying at SC 2023.
Featured Image: @tomstoltmanofficial on Instagram