Thursday, October 30, 2014


Bobbie Sage of Elkhart approaches the barn during the keg carry race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Friends of John Stoll from left: Joshua Mullet (with sign), David Mohney and LaMar Barkman cheer for him as he competes in the keg-carrying race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Andy Buck, right, and Omar Espinoza run up the hill carrying a keg to the barn at the Farmstead during the keg carry race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Phil Scott of Elkhart carries a beer keg up a steep hill to the barn at the Homestead as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Karen Walton lifts a heavy stone block to start the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Grant Anglemyer leads his heat in carrying a beer keg up a steep hill to the barn at the Homestead as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Moses Padilla concentrates as he lifts a heavy log during the new log-flipping contest as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Mike Trondle, right, of Mishawaka tosses a heavy stone block and sprints back to the starting line in the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Karen Walton makes a final pull on the sled during the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Fans of the competitors take photographs of the beer keg race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Lucas Wickey, left, of Middlebury and Jacob Rupley of Granger pull sleds back to the start line as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Amanda Buck competes barefooted as she pulls a sled back to the starting line during the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Omar Espinoza shows the exertion on his face from carrying a heavy beer keg during the keg carry race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Mike Trondle, right, of Mishawaka picks up speed as he runs pulling a sled in the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Amanda Buck, right, and Karen Walton start the keg carry race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Omar Espinoza approaches the barn during the keg carry race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Grant Anglemyer races to the top of a hill and the Homestead barn carrying a beer keg as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Omar Espinoza stops at the end of a log to pick it up and flip it over as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Karen Walton, right, laughs with Diane Haas after they competed in the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Daniel Laughlin picks up a heavy stone block to place it on a sled at the start of the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Justin Biggs of Osceola pulls a sled weighted with heavy stone blocks as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Daniel Laughlin concentrates as he pulls a sled back to the starting line of the sled pull race as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Evan Young of Munster hoists a 100-pound beer keg onto a platform at the top of a hill as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)

Competitors race to the top of a hill and the Homestead barn carrying a beer keg as part of the Strongman Competition events at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 20, 2013. The competition featured a sled pull, keg carry race and log-flipping contest. (Truth Photo By Jennifer Shephard) (AP)
Small number doesn't hold women back at fair's Strongman competition

Posted on July 20, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on July 20, 2013 at 4:59 p.m.

GOSHEN — The number of women competing in the Saturday, July 20, Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair was down from previous years, but the level of competition was still high.

Only four women competed in this year's Strongman Competition, down from eight or nine a year ago.

Bobbie Sage, owner of CrossFit RAZE gym in Elkhart, said several who had signed up for the contest did not show up.

Sage was one of the four women competing at varying levels of preparation and style. It was her third time competing in the fair's Strongman competition.

She said the gym has programs that train specifically for Strongman competitions, so those who train at the gym generally have a good idea what to expect come competition time.

Diane Haas of South Bend was competing for the first time in the fair's event.

She signed up with her husband and had been training at home doing many of the same events that were featured Saturday morning.

“We have a keg at home so we had that to practice with,” Haas said. “We don't have a hill at home, though, so it's much different here,” she added with a laugh.

Competing in the fair's Strongman for the second time, Amanda Buck of New Paris, took an interesting approach to the event, deciding to compete without shoes.

A scary moment occurred when Buck dropped the keg during the keg carry event, but the keg did not fall on her feet and she simply picked it up and continued to carry it to the top of the hill.

Buck, who also convinced her brother Andy to compete this year, said she just likes hauling things and thought the Strongman Competition was a good outlet for that desire.

“I love being barefoot,” she said. “I hate wearing shoes.”

Buck said her training regimen, besides hauling things at home, also includes pushups and pull-ups before every meal.

Though their numbers may have been down at this year's competition, the women's category of the Strongman was clearly composed of some strong women.

“It would be nice if there were more girls,” Haas said, but added, “it's competitive even with it only being four girls.”

“(The competition) is great, we love it,” Sage said. “It's always really positive. People are always really positive, so it's a lot of fun.”