Woods wins Old Belize Strongman contest

Friday, 18 August 2006

By William Ysaguirre - Freelanc Writer

William “Billy” Woods won the first ever strongman contest organised by the Belize Body Building & Body Fitness Association and the Old Belize Museum and Cultural Centre at Cucumber Beach on Sunday August 13.

He captured the title of the nation’s strongest man when he posted the best time of 4 minutes 21 seconds in a gruelling test of strength with six events.

He had to haul a 9,000lb 2006 model of a TOYOTA 3.0 D-4D 4x4 Hilux pickup truck over a prepared course in soft beach sand, flip a 500-lb tractor tire, fill the back hoe shovel of a Caterpillar tractor with 10 big rocks, haul or carry a pneumatic jack-hammer a distance of 40-feet and lift it on to a stand. He then had to flip upright 10, 55 gallon drums of ESSO oil lubricant from Gentrac, each weighing over 350lbs. Finally he had to stack five 1100-245 steel radial truck tires on to a pole.

Richard Archer was the first to try his hand at these Herculean tasks and he clocked 11:07 minutes. Mike Tsai was next and he managed to complete the course in 8:25 minutes.

Woods was the third contestant and after him came Tsai’s brother, Tom, who came closer to equaling Woods time, clocking 4:52 minutes. Floyd Rojas of Corozal was next and he had the second best time of 4 minutes 29 seconds.

Nelson Nolberto was the sixth contestant and was leading both Woods and Rojas at the end of the oil drum event when he began the tire stacking, but he lost crucial seconds when the second tire missed the post and he spent time figuring how best to get it on to the pole. He clocked 4:49 to finish in third place.

Guy Neal, the seventh contestant, seemed to be doing well until the tire stacking, and he clocked 4:59 minutes.

A heavy downpour drenched the scene at this point, but this did not discourage Greg Wade who accepted the challenge to attempt the six feats of strength in the pouring rain.

Unfortunately in doing so he accepted a physical handicap as the rain made getting a grip on the slippery wet rocks and drums that much harder and slower, and he clocked 5:05.

He might have done much better if the objects he had to lift were dry, but we shall have to await the next strongman competition to see.

Francis Woods, founder and proprietor of the Old Belize Museum, presented the prizes to the first, second and third winners of the competition.

A bodybuilding competition was also held and was won, perhaps predictably by the reigning Mr. Belize, Dion Danderson.

All proceeds of the event were donated to the Belize chapter of the Salvation Army.