A resort muscleman will take on some of the world’s best strongmen this weekend.
Morecambe’s Graham Hicks goes into Britain’s Giants Live at the Gateshead International Stadium on Saturday, August 3, hoping to do enough to qualify for World’s Strongest Man.
The 27-year-old said: “Training’s going really well, I’m the strongest I’ve ever been.
“It’s helping build a bit of confidence and I’m quite excited about it.”
It will be a real test for Hicks as he looks to reach the pinnacle of strongman, this year being held in China on August 13, for the second time, with several international strength athletes joining the best of British.
Hicks said: “This year it’s not just a Britain’s Strongest Man, they call it a Britain’s Giants Live, because you’ve got other internationals in it as it’s an official qualifier for World’s Strongest Man.
“You’ve not just got the usual guys to beat from this country, you’ve got two big Americans especially. One of them’s over 30 stone.
“We’ve got them to contend with so it could be interesting.
“Officially it’s only the top three that qualify, but they might work it that the top so many Brits go through so as long as I’m in the top four British guys I should have a chance of going.
“I’m not really that bothered, I just want to make it. That’s always the goal.”
It represents another major event for Hicks and he admits this one, to be broadcast on Channel 5 later this year, will be particularly big.
He said: “I’m quite nervous about it because there’ll be a good few thousand people watching so even though I went to World’s Strongest Man there was only about 100 people watching it at once.
“That wasn’t nerve wracking so I don’t know what to expect.
“I’m excited but I hope the nerves don’t get the better of me.”
Hicks has only been a strongman for three years and knows he has come a long way in a short space of time.
He said: “It’s been a bit of a crazy path.
“Not many under 105 guys have ever made it to world’s, there’s only been one previous, Darren Saddler.
“Even he didn’t do it as quick as I did and I’m making quite a big impact.
“The first time I deadlifted was three years ago.
“It’s not long at all especially in the first year I didn’t really know what I was doing.
“Even now I’m still always learning and asking people questions.
“I’m just hoping to keep getting stronger every year. If I keep getting stronger I’m doing alright.”