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Bill Kazmaier
Don Reinhoudt
Fred Hatfield
Jon Davis
Paul Anderson
Steve Pulcinella
Tommy Ingalsbe
Siegmund Breitbart
Chief Ironbear Collins
Ed Coan
Cynthia Morrison
Kim Bergman
Gary Mitchel
Mark Keshishian
Jim Voronin

Jamie Harris
Anthony Clark
Shannon Hartnett
Vince Anello
Curtis Leffler
Lester Maslow
Larry Pacifico
Bryan Neese

The American Strength Legends News Board

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Links to strength-related events that have happend or are about to happen

Posted September 29, 1998

A sad day for powerlifting
Jamie Harris Retires!
It is with a sad and heavy heart that ASL reports the following news: Jamie Harris has announced his retirement. In preparing for what he had hoped would be his chance to break the 800 pound barrier in the bench press, Jamie has suffered a major injury. Last Saturday, while doing heavy skull crushers on an EZ-Curl Bar, Jamie's left tricep became swollen and as a result blood covered his arm from his elbow to his hand. Upon examination by doctors, it was determined that his tricep had not been ruptured or detached. Therefore, no surgery is necessary or likely. However, Jamie has told ASL that he plans on retiring from powerlifting and will not compete in powerlifitng again. Also, sadly, the Monster Factory Gym, Jamie's brain-child, has been closed. This gym was a real powerlifter's gym. There wasn't one cardio-machine or abductor/adductor machine in sight. Heavy weight with serious lifters was the rule not the exception. However, it should be noted that Jamie's wholesale supplement company is still open for business and is accepting orders right now. Follow this link for more info on Jamie's supplement business. What's in the future for Jamie? The WWF hopefully. Jamie wants to renew his professional wrestling career. Once this tricep injury heals, Jamie will wrestle professionally in the local level and hopes to make it up to the WWF. I am sure that ASL speaks for all of us fans when we express our regrets at hearing the bad news and wish you, Jamie, the very best of luck in the future.
A full profile of Jamie Harris will soon be on ASL. Stay tuned.

Posted September 27, 1998

You asked for it and here it is- a strongman competition
Texas Strongman Championships
Doug Pruitt, organizer of the Texas Strongman Championships, wrote ASL to say the following:

"The Texas State Strongman Championships will be on Oct 17th and 18th if needed. In Austin,Tx at Zilker Park starting at 10:00 am on Saturday.

The events are going to be:
(Day 1)
#1: Keg load (there will be 4 kegs on the ground load into a truck about 15' away, this is a timed event)
#2: Log Toss(most likely this will be a large log or stump about 3'x 2'
#3: 55 gal Barrel walk ( the Barrel will be filled with sand or some other non-liquid, this is a timed event)
#4: Harnessed Vehicle pull (40' pull of a 24' or 26' delivery truck, this is a timed event)

#1: Deadlift from the knee (no straps)
#2: 56lb hammer throw
#3: Truck push (40'push of a 24' or 26'delivery truck this is a timed event)
#4: Keg over head lift (there will be 4 kegs on the ground you must pick it up and overhead press to a full lock out and then move to the next in line and you must start with the lightest, this is a time event)
#5: Samson Barrow /heavy wheel barrel race ONLY IF A TIE BRAKER IS NEEDED WILL THIS HAPPEN (40' race with as much weight as the barrow or wheel barrel will hold safely, this is a timed event)
If only one day is used because of the amount of entries we will, at the Rules meeting, vote on the events that we will drop due to time and day light.
There are two weight classes for men 210lbs and up and 210lbs and below and for women 150lbs and up and 150lbs and below. If there is any other info someone needs, please Email through my web site posted below of this page and I will Email, snail mail or fax you a entry form and info sheet. Also there will be teams.
So come and lift or just come and watch this will be something you won't want to miss ! ! !

Posted September 24, 1998

The latest about the 1998 WSM Competition
The list of competitors semms pretty firm now. In case you haven't read who they all are, please follow this hyperlink to the IronMind Enterprises site. Dr. Strossen and Dean Higginbotham are doing a great job in keeping us all up to date on the latest news. If you care to look at the names you will notice a few prominant names missing. Gary Mitchell was invited to the WSM this afternoon, but had to decline due to work-related committments. Chief "IronBear" Collins was invited yesterday, but due to previous committments he will be unable to attend. It is true that Phil Martin "tore a disk through the fault of his employer and is probably sidelined from strongman and highland games for life." (source Chris Mavromatis) This is quite a loss to both disciplines of strength athletics as Phil is one tough and respectable competitor. In addition, Jim Voronin, at the time of this posting, has not been asked and could not compete this year due to his school-related commitments. Tommy Ingalsbe is hurt.

On another note, on the same weekend as the WSM 1998, there will be a premier strongman competition in North Dakota's Scandinavian heritage festival featuring none other than Gary Mitchell, Chief IronBear Collins, Jorma Ojanaho and several other marquee athletes. As a special treat, 4 time WSM Magnus ver Magnusson will officiate. Details to come soon.

News from the other side of the pond.
Philip Wright wrote ASL to say that Glenn Ross of Northern Ireland, Bob Weir and Frazer Tranter have been invited to the 1998 WSM in Morocco.

Posted September 22, 1998

The latest about the Full Strength Weekend
The poster says it all. It's going to be awesome.

Posted September 16, 1998

The latest about Jamie Harris
As previously reported by ASL, Jaime Harris had to postpone his record attempting bench press because he was not able to get the required number of certified APF officials necessary to certify his lift. He has rescheduled history for October 3rd at the APF Powerhouse Open. In talking to ASL, Jaime said that his bench shirt was working "down to a tee. It's perfect." While visiting Jamie, ASL learned that Jamie weighed a massive and thick 380 pounds. Jamie also reported that at his gym, the Monster Factory, he benched a new personal best of 775 pounds. He is well on his way to 800+. He feels confident that he will set the new record. Once agian, good luck Jaime!!

Posted September 15, 1998

The latest about the Full Strength Challenge
Manfred Hoebrel emailed ASL to give us this list of competitors for the Full Strength Challenge. Manfred calls the following list his "Top 20." As of September, 14 1998, the following peopled have committed themselves to the competition:
1. Karl Gillingham
2. Wade Gillingham
3. Mark Keshishian
4. Douglas Ahr
5. Kris Assaley
6. Ralph J. Williams Jr.
7. Odd E Haugen
8. Whitfield Baskin
9. Terry Brennan
10. David Mills
11. Gary Mitchell
12. Ken Brown
13. Tim Vaughn
14. Joe De Angeles
15. Phil Makdisi
16. Michael Gillert
17. Harold Collins
18. Fabrice Nahmiash
19. Bryan Nesse
20. Steven Brian Bell

However, invites to the WSM have started to go out so this list can change.

Posted September 13, 1998

The latest about the Full Strength Challenge and this year's WSM
Well it seems that the pool of potential invitees to the WSM has narrowed by one. Jim Voronin has emailed ASL to announce that he cannot participate in either the Full Strength Challenge or the WSM 1998 if he was invited. Jim has several important commitments including his teaching job and his desire to defend his WPC Powerlifting Championship. Good luck at the World's Jim

Posted September 12, 1998

The latest about Jamie Harris
Jaime Harris had to postpone his record attempting bench press because he was not able to get the required number of certified APF officials necessary to certify his lift. He has rescheduled history for October 2nd. In talking to ASL, Jaime said that his bench shirt was working "down to a tee. It's perfect." He feels confident that he will set the new record. Good luck Jaime!!

Posted September 5, 1998

Five Americans will be at the WSM
Just as the headline indicates, Charlotte Brickle has decided to select five Americans to compete in the heats of this year's World Strongest Man. Who will they be? Good question, Charlotte doesn't even know yet. Needless to say, many of the US top strongmen will forgo the Full Strength Challenge because it is too close to the date for this year's WSM in Morocco.

Posted September 4, 1998

A tribute to a great (strong) man
I, Justin McShane, feel compelled to write this and have diverged from my normal policy of "not being involved."

I want to tell you all about a man named Curtis Leffler. As first reported by, (and something that I have independently confirmed by asking Gus Rethwitch), Curtis Leffler has passed away. He was in the midst of preparing for a contest and died of a heart attack.

Curtis as many of you may remember was a competitor in the WSM in 1995 in the Bahamas. He caught a lot of guff from everyone when it seemed that his grip strength was not up to par in the farmer's walk and had some difficulty with the McGlashen Stones. I just wanted to point out a fact that he shared with me at the 1998 Arnold Classic. Not a big man for excuses, Curtis nevertheless told me that he had been invited (more like begged) to compete in 1995 less than 2 days after the NPC Nationals. He was extremely dehydrated and not in the best physical condition having practically starved himself for over a week to get down to "super freaky cut condition." So, here he was fresh off a plane from the New Orleans competition into another competition that he had never even seen before, he quickly found out how dehydration and 100 degree temperature could sap one's strength.

To place his nay-sayer's thoughts to rest, a month before the Arnold Classic 1998, he took part in the 1998 Hawaiian Strongman Challenge in which he placed third ahead of Magnus Ver Magnusson (a fact that he was very proud of).

At the Arnold Classic, he teamed up with Gary Mitchell to compete against Berend Veneberg and Uli Schwartz in an expo. It looked like a lot of fun and Curtis surely did dispel any rumors that he was not on par with the other strongmen.

After his expo, I had the pleasure of meeting him. It is true that he is a very soft-spoken and kind man. Unlike some of his other colleagues, he didn't have a large sign at the Tribe Quest booth announcing his presence. He met me with a strong and firm hand shake, a big hello and a smile. I didn't introduce myself as American Strength Legends, just as Justin McShane, a fan. He took a good deal of time out to talk to me about his strongman aspirations. He talked about the tough choices he had to make soon because he said that he loved strongman, but was afraid that he could not achieve all he could because of his bodybuilding commitments. He was stuck, he said. I like the most annoying fan on the planet asked him for a picture with him. I started to get out my wallet expecting to pay 10 or 20 dollars that many of his colleagues were charging. He said, "Justin, I don't charge for my friends." I was impressed because autograph signing and picture taking is a major, major source of income for many of his colleagues in the Bodybuilding world. I'm glad that I got the picture that I did although he makes he look so very, very small.

It is a great tragedy and a great loss to both bodybuilding and strongman. I will remember Curtis Leffler for a long, long time NOT because of his strongman and bodybuilding performances, which are memorable, but because of the 45 minutes he took out of his busy life to talk to a stranger about his life and treat me with respect. He was only the third strongman that I met that ever asked me about me and my dreams and aspirations. It takes a lot to impress me and I must say that Mr. Leffler did impress. I am sure that I share all of our sentiments when I say that our prayers are with his family and friends at this time.

I had entered into communications with him to be profiled at American Strength Legends and I pledge that he will be up in the not too distant future.

See Curtis at the Arnold Classic

Curtis Leffler and Justin McShane

Some of his competitions include:
1995 NPC National Men's ChampionshipsSeptember 30, 1995 at New Orleans, Louisiana5th Heavyweight

1995 World's Strongest Man Competitor

1996 NPC USA Mens ChampionshipsJune 28-29 at Long Beach, California10th Heavyweight

1996 North American Bodybuilding Championships - MensSeptember 6-7 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada7th Heavyweights

1998 Hawaiian Strongman Challenge3rd beating Magnus Ver Magnusson

Posted September 1, 1998

Kim Bergman does it again!
Kim Bergman wrote to American Strength Legends this evening to share with us her great news. Once again Kim is head and shoulders above the rest. She wrote, "I just got back from Atlanta where I won the Coastal USA Bodybuilding Championships! It was a really big show! I won the heavy weight class, then won the pose down for Over All Champion!!! They gave out other awards also, and I was awarded Best Abs, and Most Muscular female! Pretty cool, huh? I'm not sure what's next! I may get ready for a National Bodybuilding show, or I may do the World Powerlifting Championships next year! It's nice to have the option. For now, I'm just going to savor the victory, and enjoy a nice pizza and a cold beer. Hee Hee." Way to go Kim. It is rare, indeed, for a powerlifter to do well in the bodybuilding world or for a bodybuilder to do well in the powerlifting world.

Posted August 17th, 1998

Kim Bergman the bodybuilder!
Kim Bergman wrote to American Strength Legends this evening to share with us her great news. Kim won the Heart of Dixie Bodybuilding contest and is preparing for the Costal USA contest in two weeks. Way to go Kim. Pictures will be up soon on her picture page.

Posted August 17th, 1998

The results from the Michigan Renissance Fair
This past weekend a strongman competition was held at the Michigan Renaissance Fair. The results are as follows:
1st place: Jouko Ahola
2nd place: Heinz Ollesch (by one point)
3rd place: Wayne Price
4th place: Gary Mitchell
5th place: Chief IronBear Collins
6th place: Joe DeAngelis
Magnus ver Magnusson officiated. Pictures and a review to come soon.

Posted July 26th, 1998

The results of the World Muscle Power Classic
Gary Mitchell and Mark Keshishian write that, "results from world muscle power -as follows: Jouko Ahola, Ramond Bergmanis, Mark Phillipi and Brian Bell." Gary's back is feeling better. They also report that "Jouko has just about every implement there is (i.e.-13 stones, basque circle, power stairs, 5 logs, a car to carry, 150kg canisters for farmers walk training-just to name a few) We found Jouko was probably the nicest strongman we have met so far besides us of course." Ha Ha.

Posted July 25th, 1998

The location of this year's World's Strongest Man
This year's World's Strongest Man Finals will be held in Morrocco. (source Charlotte Bickle)

Posted July 25th, 1998

World Muscle Power Classic-Day#1
It is my sad duty to report that Gary Mitchell was injured during the second event this weekend. The first event was the truck wench where Gary did well. The second event was a log-related event where the log was on the ground and one end was lifted up while the other end was on a pivot. It was here that Gary hyper-extended his back and possibly herniated his #3 lumbar disc. However, he did the McGlashen stones which was the third event. He was able to put up three of the stones despite his herniated disc. Juoko Ahola devastated the world record and lifted all of the stones in 19 seconds. Event four was the log press where Gary didn't do too well due to his back. Mark Phillipi did show up and so far has done well. Check back here tomorrow to see the final results from day 2.

Posted July 22nd, 1998

A preview of the World's Strongest Man Finals?
Gary Mitchell has been invited to an invitation only strongman contest at the Michigan Renaissance Festival over the weekend of August 15th and 16th. It is sanctioned by Manfred Hoebrel and the AFSA. Those who have confirmed to be at the event include: Jouko Ahola, Heinz Ollesch, Curtis Leffler, Mark Phillipi and Chief Iron Bear Collins. It looks like it could be a sneak peak to the Worlds

Posted July 21th, 1998

An update on Anthony Clark
Tom McCullough of APA Texas and organizer of the APA combined Nationals wrote to ASL to say, "Big News! Anthony Clark called me tonight and finally told me he will be lifting in the APA Nationals. He is doing all three lifts and plans on setting a new all-time total record." Good luck to Anthony and to all of the lifters at the APA Nationals. Thanks Mr. McCullough for the scoop.

Posted July 16th, 1998

An update on the World Muscle Power Championships
The World Muscle Power Championships (WMPC) is produced by Doug Edmunds in Scotland. The WMPC is second only to the World's Strongest man in terms of prestige. This year's winner gets an automatic invite to the World's Strongest Man Contest.
Gary Mitchell will represent the USA. As many of you remember him from watching ESPN, Gary competed in the US Stongman Finals last year in Primm Nevada. Unfortunately, he had to withdraw on the last day of competition due to an unfortunate bicep tear that happend to him after the first event. He competed in the WMPC last year where he put on a very impressive display of will power finishing in fifth place despite tearing both of his biceps. He has won the Virginia's Strongest Man contest twice and on his third year (his second title defense), he blew his knee out in the log press while being well ahead on points. Before his strongman career, Gary was a superheavyweight powerlifter. He recorded an impressive 903 squat in the APF. He also was declared the USPF national champ, but was not selected to compete in the IPF World's due to threatened legal action by some of his fellow competitors. However, Gary is in tip-top physical shape for his second turn at the WMPC title. He is setting new PR's every workout in the gym and weighs a hefty 310 pounds. Good luck Gary! If you wish, you can write emails of support to Gary care of this address American Strength Legends will make sure that he gets them.

July 25th-26th: The World Muscle Power Championships.
This contest is divided into a Highland Games competition and a strongman competition.

Scheduled to compete on Saturday in the Highland games are the following:
Ryan Vierra and Shannon Hartnett (representing the USA),
H. Mac Donald (representing Canada),
P. Hellier (representing England),
K. Thompson (representing New Zealand),
F. Brebner and C. Bryce (representing Scotland).

Scheduled to compete on Sunday in the Strongman contest are the following athletes:
Gary Mitchell (representing the USA),
Jouko Ahola (representing Finland),
A. Pintinas and Raimond Bergmanis (representing Lithuania),
M. Rossiter and S. Green (representing New Zealand),
Mike Abdullah (representing Japan),
Russ Bradley (representing England),
L. Bowers,
Dynamite Tourtchinsky (representing Russia),
Wayne Price (representing South Africa)
Brian Bell (representing Scotland)

The events for the strongman contested are announced as follows:
1. Winch pull
2. Super Yoke
3. Basque circle with a car
4. Anvil hold
5. Overhead lift with new metallic logs
6. Medley which will include a block weight
7. Tire Flip
8. Anvil carry
9. Tree trunk lift

Posted July 16th, 1998

The latest from Kim Bergman
Kim Bergman wrote to American Strength Legends to report: "The bodybuilding is going great!! I checked my bodyfat this afternoon..... and it is 6.69%. My weight is 160!! I've got 4 more weeks until the contest!! This low carb diet is "heck"!! I've found that powerlifting was harder "in the gym," but bodybuilding is harder "outside the, etc." Good luck Kim.

Posted July 14th, 1998

Jim Voronin does it again
American Strength Legends spoke to superheavyweight powerlifter Jim Voronin who told ASL that he "won (the APF nationals) with a 2242 total, and went 8 for 8. Squat: 909, Bench: 600 (reverse grip due to my pec) and Dead: 733." Good job Jim and good luck at the worlds in Austria.

Posted July 10, 1998

American Strength Legends talks to Jamie Harris
Yesterday afternoon, American Strength Legends talked to Jamie Harris. Jamie has his own gym called Harris' Monster Factory in West Elizabeth, PA. He stated that he will be breaking the 800 pound barrier in the bench come this September. He said, "the date of the meet is on September 19th in Zanesville, OH at Brent Traceys APF Ironhouse open." Good luck Jamie.

Posted July 10, 1998

Gary Mitchell is going to Scotland
Gary Mitchell will be heading off to Scotland on July 24th in order to compete in this year's World Muscle Power Classic. The meet is put on by Doug Edmunds and qualifies the winner for the World's Strongest Man Contest. This will be Gary's second trip to the World Muscle Power Classic. Good luck Gary.

Posted July 7, 1998

The latest on Eddie Coan
American Strength Legends just got off the phone with Eddie Coan. He was not allowed to lift this weekend. The court for sports arbitration, which is founded and funded by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), ordered a stay on his suspension "due to the irrepairable harm it was doing. So that I could lift this weekend." (source Eddie Coan) The USAPL chose to ignore the decision. The findings of the court were legally binding to the USAPL because it is the recognized affiliate member of the IPF. This leaves them open to all sorts of legal complications. Eddie is taking it all in stride and says that now he can focus on the final decision. The final decision as to his status will not be made until July 31st. He told me that he trained as though he was going to lift that weekend. Also, rumors that he would be lifting in the AAU Worlds are false. "It was never a consideration," said Eddie.

Posted July 6, 1998

The latest on Anthony Clark
American Strength Legends received an email form Mindi Toth, Anthony Clark's fiancee, she writes that Anthony "did 815 two weeks before the meet in York-no problem. The whole gym saw it and it was awesome." Too bad it wasn't in competition.

Posted July 4, 1998

Eddy Coan's not lifting this weekend
Eddy Coan's appeal before the International Court for Sports Arbitration was not resolved. "A final decision has been deferred until the end of July." (source: Mike Armstrong) So Eddy will be missing this year's nationals as well as the IPF worlds.

Posted June 28, 1998

The 1998 York Barbell Strength Spectacular
Vince Anello, Ruthie Schaeffer, Don Reinhoudt, Bill Kazmaier, Larry Pacifico and Bev Francis and Mary Jeffrey in abstenia were inducted to the York Barbell Hall of Fame. A transcript of their acceptance speeches will be here shortly on ASL
Powerlifting: the IPA World Cup was run by the legendary Mark Challiet and his wife Helen. Big names, big numbers like Tony Kamand, Steve Brodsky, John Black Jr., Matt Dimiduk and J.R. Hunt.
Anthony Clark was inducted on Saturday before he benched. He was awarded 765 pounds after the fact and missed 805 twice. Ever the good sport, I overheard him talking to the head judge and Anthony Clark agreed that the head judge had called him correctly. He told me that "there's always next time." He also said that the Arnold Classic meet when he got down to 307 pounds did effect his lifting. He got back up to 337 pounds for the meet.
They also mis-qued his perferred lifting song on attempt two (his first attempt at 805 pounds). They played some annoying song that really got his buddy spotters POed because they were jumping up and down trying to get them to change it, but the sound technician must have been too tired to notice. Anthony even raised four fingers in the air in a vain attempt to get them to move it from song 1 to song 4 like they were supposed to. So, maybe that was a contributing factor. But attempt three, they got the song right. Spiritual Quest was playing, he was pretty psyched up, but on the eccentric part of the movement the bar got out of the grove of his shirt. He really struggled hard to bring it back into position which he did finally. Then he hit it and got stuck about four inches from lock out. Nevertheless, they were good efforts. Plus, his attempts weren't until nearly 9pm at night, much later than I think he had assumed.

Posted June 24, 1998

Eddy Coan in court
Eddy Coan is set to have a heraing before the court of arbitration for sport in Denver on July 2nd to appeal the IPF's decision to ban him. That is two days before the Seniors. Good luck Eddie. (source: Eddy Coan)

Posted June 22, 1998

The 11th Annual Aronld Schwarzenegger Classic
The dates have been announced for the 1999 Arnold Classic. As alsways, it will be held in Columbus, OH. This year it will begin on March 5th and last until March 7th. Hope to see you all there

Posted June 21, 1998

Strongest Man Alive Contest Postponed
ASL has learned from extremely reliable soureces that the The Strongest Man Alive Contest has been temporarily cancelled due to unforseen rules and regulations involvi