Derry plans for World’s Strongest Man contest

Strongmen Jonathan Kelly, left, and Chris McNaghten get to grips with the Mayor of Derry Ald. Maurice Devenney during the launch of Irelands Strongest Man 2011 with current UK strongest man Glenn Ross and Jim Roddy, City Centre Initiative. The event will take place on Derry's Walls on the 1st and 2nd of July. (1006PG11)
Strongmen Jonathan Kelly, left, and Chris McNaghten get to grips with the Mayor of Derry Ald. Maurice Devenney during the launch of Irelands Strongest Man 2011 with current UK strongest man Glenn Ross and Jim Roddy, City Centre Initiative. The event will take place on Derry's Walls on the 1st and 2nd of July. (1006PG11)

The World’s Strongest Man competition could be on its way to Derry for 2013, the ‘Journal’ can reveal.

Plans are underway to bring the internationally renowned strongman competition to the city following this week’s announcement that the two-day Ireland’s Strongest Man 2011 contest is to be held in Guildhall Square on July 1-2.

Unveiling the national contest on Tuesday, veteran World Strongest Man competitor and the reigning UK’s Strongest Man Glenn Ross, said he is hoping to help bring the lucrative international showpiece to the city to mark the City of Culture year. “We’re hoping for a nice build up with the Ireland Strongest Man competition in the city this year and to get big crowds and good feedback.”

Jim Roddy, of the City Centre Initiative, said the Ireland Strongest Man competition would be a big stepping stone in helping bring the world’s strongest men to the city. “We have the Ireland’s here this year and next and hopefully the world strongest man will be held here in 2013. The World’s Strongest Man has been held in very exotic places in recent years and to think that could be in Derry in 2013 would be fantastic for the city. Hopefully we can put on a very good show here and convince the organisers to bring the world competion here.”

RTE has already signed up to televise next month’s Ireland’s Strongest Man event and Mr Roddy said the popular event will help boost local trade.

Mr Ross, who promotes the Ireland’s Strongest Man contest, explained that the strength extravaganza - with eight “ultimate tests” - will kick off on Friday July 1 at 6pm and resume the following day at 12 noon.

“Truly the best in Ireland will be ready to do battle at the City Walls,” he said. “It’s the biggest strongman event in Ireland, where the strongmen will battle it out for the coveted Finn McCool trophy. From four to 84, everyone will enjoy this. It’s one of the most watched sports worldwide with over 150 million viewers watching the World’s Strongest Man.”