By JIMMY MCCARTHY
BROCTON - Nine heavy lifters took part in the strongman competition Saturday morning in the beating heat at the Portland Bicentennial. On-lookers watched as lifters, eight men and one woman, displayed their ability to hoist and throw heavy weights in the hot weather.
Participating lifters from Rochester, Pennsylvania and the local area put on a performance that wowed the crowd. The crowd continuously cheered and clapped for the lifters worked hard and struggled through the intense lifting. The crowd watching included one of the world's strongest men, and Brocton native, Don Reinhoudt.
Photo by Jimmy McCarthy
Andrew Gilley watches a keg after it is thrown into the air.
The first two events of the contest were a tribute to Reinhoudt, as they were the events that lead him to become the world's strongest man. Reinhoudt was a 4 time IPF World Power lifting Superheavyweight champion and considered to be the best power lifter of all time.
The Lifters first test was to lift a keg filled with water, ranging from 145 pounds to 225 pounds, above their heads cleanly. Many lifted it up above their heads like it was nothing, but when they were faced with the 225 pound keg, the struggles and muscle tensions began. It was a scorching hot day after all. Lifter Paul D'Antonio was the winner of the event, lifting the 225 pound with ease.
After a five minute break for the lifters to cool down, the second event of the day consisted of throwing a tire for the farthest distance. Each participant had two attempts. Winners of the event were D'Antonio who threw the tire at a distance of 41 feet and 3 inches, and second place Jimmy Norton who threw for a total distance of 40 feet 7 inches.
Other events included the keg throw, which consisted of throwing a 65 pound keg in the air as high as possible, and the zercher carry, which included lifting anywhere from 300 to 350 pounds.
Events at the Portland Bicentennial continue into Sunday with the grand parade at 1 p.m. and the retiring of colors at 6 p.m.
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