World's Strongest Man 2019 Results: Martins Licis Earns 1st Career Win at Event

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistJune 16, 2019

Hafthor Bjornsson
Hafthor BjornssonQuinn Rooney/Getty Images

Martins Licis was crowned World's Strongest Man for 2019 on Sunday after powering to a grandstand finish in the final five events at Manatee Beach in Bradenton, Florida.

Licis, 28, became the third successive, inaugural WSM champion to be crowned after Eddie Hall and Hafthor Bjornsson won their maiden titles in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

Bjornsson was injured early in Thursday's opening round and later confirmed on Instagramhe had torn the plantar fascia in his foot. The Icelandic strongman qualified for Sunday's final in good time but was clearly feeling pain in certain events and failed to retain his crown.

Poland's Mateusz Kieliszkowski and Brian Shaw of the United States were also among the main contenders on Sunday as new names and old shone on the biggest stage in a memorable finals climax.


Podium Finishers

Event 1: Loading Race

1. Tom Stoltman (39.66 seconds)

2. Mateusz Kieliszkowski (40.52 seconds)

3. Martins Licis (43.87 seconds)


Event 2: Overhead Press—Medley

1. Mateusz Kieliszkowski (23.86 seconds)

2. Martins Licis (27.54 seconds)

3. Brian Shaw (31.8 seconds)


Event 3: Squat Lift—Reps

1. Martins Licis (9 reps)

2. Brian Shaw (8 reps)

3= Mateusz Kieliszkowski (7 reps)

3= Hafthor Bjornsson (7 reps)


Event 4: Deadlift—Hold

1. Hafthor Bjornsson (45.29 seconds)

2. Martins Licis (41.20 seconds)

3. Jean-Francois Caron (38.57 seconds)


Event 5: Atlas Stones

1. Tom Stoltman (10 pts)

2. Martins Licis (9 pts)

3. Jean-Francois Caron (8 pts)



Scottish brothers Tom and Luke Stoltman became the first siblings to qualify for the World's Strongest Man finals, and the former got off to a fine start by winning the Loading Race first up on Sunday. He was the only athlete to beat the 40-second mark with a time of 39.66 seconds.

Brother Luke didn't fare as well and finished seventh in the opening event, while Kieliszkowski took second and American Licis followed closely behind in third.

Kieliszkowski and Licis made it back onto the podium in the overhead press medley, except the former came out on top after rounding the circuit in 23.86 seconds, almost four seconds faster than any other lifter.

Shaw finished in a time of 31.8 seconds to take third and followed up with eight repetitions in the third event, the barbell squat. That was sufficient to take second and net another nine points, with only Licis (nine reps) performing better.

Bjornsson clinched a second straight fourth-place finish and powered through an early reset following his second rep to complete seven in total, level with Kieliszkowski and enough to add another seven points.

The static aspect of the car hold played into Bjornsson's hands considering his foot injury, producing his first win of the finals. He held on for 45.29 seconds, an emphatic 4.09 seconds longer than runner-up Licis to rejuvenate even the slightest hope of defending his crown before the final event.

The Mountain had to finish second or higher to keep his title vision alive, but Licis held a five-point advantage over anyone else in the field and held on past the Atlas Stones to maintain top spot.

The American's first podium finish in World's Strongest Man has also produced his maiden overall championship and a deserved result after showing remarkable consistency on Sunday.