A few contenders, like Hooper, seem stronger than others heading into the weekend’s Final.
Day Two of the 2023 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) promised fireworks, and it did not disappoint in its delivery. The second day saw the athletes work through the Conan’s Wheel, Kettlebell Toss, and climactic Stone-Off to determine the 10 places in the 2023 WSM Final.
Here’s where the leaderboard stands at the end of Day Two, along with a short recap of how each athlete fared at the end of the Qualifying Round.
2023 WSM Qualifying Round Leaderboard
|1||Pavlo Kordiyaka — Ukraine — Finalist||25|
|2||Tom Stoltman — United Kingdom — Finalist||20.5|
|3||Bobby Thompson — USA||20|
|4||Konstantine Janashia — Georgia||17.5|
|5||Pa O’Dwyer — Ireland||13|
|6||Eddie Williams — Australia||9|
|1||Oleksii Novikov — Ukraine — Finalist||23|
|2||Luke Stoltman — United Kingdom — Finalist||21|
|3||Gavin Bilton — United Kingdom||20|
|4||Thomas Evans — USA||18|
|5||Kristjan Jon Haraldsson — Iceland||15.5|
|6||Fadi El Masri — Lebanon||7.5|
|1||Mitchell Hooper — Canada — Finalist||29|
|2||Mathew Ragg — New Zealand — Finalist||22.5|
|3||Aivars Smaukstelis — Latvia||17.5|
|4||Mateusz Kielszkowski — Poland||14|
|5||Graham Hicks — United Kingdom||11.5|
|6||Spenser Remick — USA||10.5|
|1||Jaco Schoonwinkel — South Africa — Finalist||24|
|2||Brian Shaw — USA — Finalist||23.5|
|3||Rauno Heinla — Estonia||20.5|
|4||Adam Bishop — United Kingdom||14|
|5||Kevin Faires — USA||13.5|
|6||Gabriel Rheaume — Canada||9.5|
|1||Trey Mitchell — USA — Finalist||26|
|2||Evan Singleton — USA — Finalist||24.5|
|3||Eythor Ingolfsson Melsted — Iceland||22.5|
|4||Mark Felix — United Kingdom||12.5|
|5||Paul Smith — United Kingdom||11|
|6||Jean-Stephen Coraboeuf — France||8.5|
2022 World’s Strongest Man Day Two Results
Here are the Day Two results from each Qualifying Round Group, including each athlete’s individual finishes, any relevant corresponding time, and placing within the Conan’s Wheel and Kettlebell Toss. Plus, there’s an overall recap of the Stone-Off event featuring just the second and third-place finishers in each group.
Conan’s Wheel Recap
As one of the last events of the 2023 WSM Qualifying Round, the Conan’s Wheel tested the athletes’ core strength and endurance. They had the objective of holding up a 199.5-kilogram (440-pound) bar in the Zercher position while walking around in a fixed circle as far as possible.
The event’s winners would score the most “degrees” or loops around the circle. A full loop the length of the circle would be considered 360 degrees.
Former 2020 WSM champion Oleksii Novikov recorded the maximum distance with 847 degrees to become the winner in Group 2. Pavlo Kordiyaka, reigning Europe’s Strongest Man (ESM) champion, notched the second-most with 749 degrees as Group 1’s winner. Kordiyaka possesses the Conan’s Wheel World Record with a rotation length of 1,009 degrees from his 2023 ESM victory.
- Pavlo Kordiyaka — 749 degrees
- Pa O’Dwyer — 722 degrees
- Bobby Thompson — 649 degrees
- Konstantine Janashia — 633 degrees
- Eddie Williams — 614 degrees
- Tom Stoltman — 598 degrees
- Oleksii Novikov — 897 degrees
- Gavin Bilton — 557 degrees
- Luke Stoltman — 545 degrees
- Kristjan Jon Haraldsson — 524 degrees
- Fadi El Masri — 70 degrees
- Thomas Evans — 69 degrees
- Mitchell Hooper — 636 degrees
- Mathew Ragg — 628 degrees
- Aivars Šmaukstelis —575 degrees
- Mateusz Kieliszkowski — 538 degrees
- Spenser Remick — 470 degrees
- Graham Hicks — 425 degrees
- Jaco Schoonwinkel — 713 degrees
- Kevin Faires — 636 degrees
- Gabriel Rhéaume — 476 degrees
- Rauno Heinla — 572 degrees
- Brian Shaw — 411 degrees
- Adam Bishop — 292 degrees
- Eythor Ingolfsson Melsted — 629 degrees
- Evan Singleton — 589 degrees
- Trey Mitchell — 523 degrees
- Paul Smith — 518 degrees
- Mark Felix — 470 degrees
- Jean-Stephen Corabeouf — 143 degrees
Kettlebell Toss Recap
Some athletes needed a better performance in the vital Kettlebell Toss than others. After all, it would partly determine who qualified for their Group’s Stone Off.
This event pushed the competitors’ explosive power, presenting them with seven kettlebells that gradually increased in weight. They had one minute to launch as many weights as they could over a 4.5-meter (15-foot) overhead bar.
Here was how the weights progressed in size: 20.5 kilograms (45 pounds), 21.8 kilograms (48 pounds), 22.7 kilograms (50 pounds), 22.7 kilograms (50 pounds), 24 kilograms (53 pounds), 26.3 kilograms (58 pounds), and finally 30.8 kilograms (68 pounds).
Even while mathematically eliminated from the Finals by the time he stepped up to compete, Mateusz Kieliszkowski fared the best in the Kettlebell Toss. The Polish athlete finished all seven throws in a blazing 32.44 seconds in Group 3. In the process, he snapped groupmate Mitchell Hooper’s dominant four-event winning streak.
- Pavlo Kordiyaka — Six reps, 18.09 seconds
- Konstantine Janashia — Six reps, 19.93 seconds
- Tom Stoltman — Six reps, 21.99 seconds
- Pa O’Dwyer — Six reps, 31.71 seconds
- Bobby Thompson — Six reps, 35.67 seconds
- Eddie Williams — Six reps, 36.4 seconds
- Gavin Bilton — Six reps, 19.9 seconds
- Luke Stoltman — Six reps, 49.35 seconds
- Kristjan Jon Haraldsson — Five reps, 15.57 seconds
- Thomas Evans — Five reps, 28.68 seconds
- Fadi El Masri — Four reps, 20.61 seconds
- Oleksii Novikov — One rep, 9.56 seconds
- Mateusz Kieliszkowski — Seven reps, 32.44 seconds
- Mitchell Hooper — Six reps, 17.18 seconds
- Mathew Ragg — Six reps, 21.96 seconds
- Aivars Šmaukstelis — Six reps, 25.41 seconds
- Spenser Remick — Five reps, 24.31 seconds
- Graham Hicks — Four reps, 20.51 seconds
- Brian Shaw — Seven reps, 48.45 seconds
- Adam Bishop — Six reps, 32.29 seconds
- Kevin Faires — Five reps, 34.09 seconds
- Jaco Schoonwinkel — Six reps, 47.32 seconds
- Rauno Heinla — Five reps, 44.31 seconds
- Gabriel Rhéaume — Three reps, 14 seconds
- Trey Mitchell — Seven reps, 34.42 seconds
- Evan Singleton — Six reps, 28.81 seconds
- Eythor Ingolfsson Melsted — Six reps, 27.66 seconds
- Mark Felix — Four reps, 42.66 seconds
- Jean-Stephen Corabeouf — Two reps, 23.65 seconds
- Paul Smith — One rep, 28.62 seconds
Stone Off Recap
Finally, it was time to determine the other half of the 2023 WSM Finals field. With Novikov, Hooper, Trey Mitchell, first-time WSM Finalist Kordiyaka, and first-time WSM competitor Jaco Schoonwinkel winning their respective groups, the second and third-place finishes squared off head-to-head in an Atlas Stone battle to earn berths for the weekend’s Finals.
The participating athletes had to lift gradually heavier Atlas Stones over a bar separating them from their opponents. The weights ranged from 140 kilograms (308 pounds) to 200 kilograms (440 pounds). The last Stone’s weight would be lifted for reps until one of the strongmen could not continue.
Tom Stoltman, Luke Stoltman, Brian Shaw, Mathew Ragg, and Evan Singleton all earned places in the 2023 WSM Finals by winning their Stone Off. The 2023 WSM is Ragg’s first appearance in the contest. 2023 marks Singleton’s first time reaching the Finals in four consecutive WSM appearances — his 2020 and 2021 showings were interrupted by withdrawals due to injury, while he failed to pass the Qualifying Stage in 2022.
- Tom Stoltman — 3 stones — Winner
- Bobby Thompson — 3 stones
- Luke Stoltman — 7 stones — Winner
- Gavin Bilton — 7 stones
- Mathew Ragg — 8 stones — Winner
- Aivars Smaukstelis — 8 stones
- Brian Shaw — 11 stones — Winner
- Rauno Heinla — 11 stones
- Evan Singleton — 8 stones — Winner
- Eythor Ingolfsson Melsted — 8 stones
2023 World’s Strongest Man Final Athletes
Here are the 10 confirmed athletes in the 2023 WSM Finals:
- Pavlo Kordiyaka (Ukraine)
- Oleksii Novikov (Ukraine)
- Mitchell Hooper (Canada)
- Jaco Schoonwinkel (South Africa)
- Trey Mitchell (United States)
- Tom Stoltman (United Kingdom)
- Luke Stoltman (United Kingdom)
- Mathew Ragg (New Zealand)
- Brian Shaw (United States)
- Evan Singleton (United States)
Some of the more notable achievements in qualifying for the 2023 WSM Final include two-time defending champion Tom Stoltman surviving his Stone Off. The Scottish athlete will officially have the opportunity for a three-peat victory over the weekend. Meanwhile, after blitzing the 2022 WSM for a surprise Finals berth, Mitchell Hooper may seem like a bona fide favorite heading into the weekend and the person that might unseat Stoltman from his throne.
From a longer-term perspective, the legendary Brian Shaw extended his streak of WSM Final appearances to 15. In his last WSM before a strongman retirement later this summer, the four-time champion (2011, 2013, 2015-2016) will have officially made it 15 of 16 appearances in the Finals over his illustrious career. The only instance Shaw of ever missing the Finals was his WSM debut in 2008.
A Final Showdown
The 10 finalists in the 2023 WSM now get to enjoy a rest day on Friday before returning to compete in the Finals on Saturday, Apr. 22, and Sunday, Apr. 23, 2023. While many eyes might be on Stoltman in his repeat quest, on Hooper in trying to finish his meteoric climb up strongman’s summit, and on Shaw in his last WSM, it could be anyone’s contest to win.
Truly, until that last Atlas Stone is lifted onto its platform on Sunday, all bets are off for the 2023 WSM.
Featured image: Todd Burandt / Courtesy of World’s Strongest Man