Saturday, November 1, 2014


Brock Yost, left, and Kiel Hunter race up a hill carrying kegs during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Andrew Hagar of Millersburg concentrates during the tractor pull as he competes in the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Bobbie Sage, owner of Crossfit Raze gym, pulls a tractor in the 2014 Elkhart County 4-H Fair strongman competition. (Tori Fater)

Brock Yost, right, and Kiel Hunter race up a hill carrying kegs during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Madison Stewart nears the top of the hill carrying a keg during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

A race worker sweeps the track before the next competitor starts a heat of the tractor pull at the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Competitors race up a hill to the Farmstead barn during a heat of the keg race at the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Wesley Fluke races back to the start line to pick up the second keg during the keg race at the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Troy Campanello prepares to hoist a heavy keg onto a stand after carrying it uphill as he competes in the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Joseph Schultz, left, and Robert Lafollette start a heat of the Keg Race in the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. Schultz was an odd number competitor so Lafollette stepped in so Schultz wouldn't have to run a heat alone. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Joseph Schultz carries a keg up a hill during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Nick Moore of South Haven, Michigan hoists a heavy keg on to a platform at the top of a hill as he competes in the Strongman Competition at the Farmstead at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Tim Fair starts the Strongman Competition with the tractor pull at the Farmstead at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Lore McSpadden of New Paris goes all out as she competes in the tractor pull at the Farmstead at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

David Miller tugs on the rope as he competes in the tractor pull at the Farmstead at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Amanda Buck competes barefooted as she carries a keg up to the top of a hill during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Amanda Buck competes barefooted as she carries a keg up to the top of a hill during the Strongman Competition at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard/The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)

Andrew Smith of New Paris starts the tractor pull as he competes in the Strongman Competition at the Farmstead at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Saturday, July 19, 2014. Competitors compete at pulling a tractor, throwing heavy logs, carrying kegs up a steep hill as well as an obstacle course. (Jennifer Shephard /The Elkhart Truth) (Buy this photo)
Strongman competitors pull tractors, flip logs for bragging rights

Posted on July 19, 2014 at 8:08 p.m.

Locals did feats of strength for an admiring crowd Saturday, July 19, at the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds in Goshen.

Bobbie Sage, owner of Crossfit Raze gym, competed in the Strongman Competition for the fourth time Saturday.

She likes the event environment, she said. It’s fun and positive, and the competition is free, which is always good.

“As a gym we train for it,” Sage said. “It’s a good way to test our fitness.”

Sage has won her class before. She said she sees familiar faces every year at the competition, including one athlete whose score is always close.

“She’s always chasing me,” Sage said.

Because not many female athletes sign up for Strongman, women aren’t divided into weight classes. Sage estimated about 10 women signed up this year.

That leaves five classes: Women and heavyweight, middleweight, lightweight and featherweight men.

Spectators cheered on each competitor as the athletes pulled tractors up to 75 feet and sprinted uphill carrying kegs that weighed about 150 pounds.

For the tractor pull, competitors were harnessed to a 1956 diesel tractor and given 90 seconds to drag it down a 75-foot path.

Andrew Smith was the second to drag a tractor behind him, bending at a 45-degree angle to the ground while he pulled himself hand-over-hand along a heavy rope. 

“It wasn’t too hard after I got it going,” he said afterward.

After the tractor pull and and keg run events, the top 12 competitors from each weight class moved on to the log flipping contest.

Competitors lifted logs above their shoulders and pushed them upright, then ran along the log as it tipped to its other side. Each athlete lifted a log six times total.

The audience cheered for everyone, especially those who were struggling with the lift.

“Cheer him on!” yelled the announcer. “You got it!”

Spectator Brandon Gangwer competed last year and said he enjoys rooting for people and watching all of the events.

“What it takes to do ’em, man,” he said, nodding. “It’s a lot harder than it looks.”

Winners of the Strongman Competition have yet to be announced as of 8 p.m. Saturday.