HE is one of the strongest men in Australia and lifts boulders for fun – now Ngarimu Ahipene has his sights set on the rest of the world.
Fresh off victory at this year’s Arnold Strongman Australia in the Under 90kg category, the Aubin Grove resident is currently preparing to represent Australia on the world stage.
He will head to Daytona, Florida in November for the Official Strongman Games, just two years after he stepped away from a successful crossfit team to take on the new challenge.
“Our team made it to the World Crossfit Games in 2017 so after that, I’d done everything I’d wanted to do and I took a pretty keen interest in strongman,” Ahipene said.
“I tried to go for the Arnold title at the beginning of 2018 and came 4th in my first competition, which I thought I wasn’t too bad.
“All of last year, I spent training strongman, then went over to Arnold this year and managed to win my division by the skin of my teeth.”
Strongman is similar to weightlifting and involves athletes competing in multiple events which combine strength, speed and endurance.
Ahipene said he enjoyed the challenge of the sport, in particular the creativity needed to lift oddly-shaped objects – such as atlas stones and monster dumbbells.
“You can use any technique to lift these objects, there’s not a whole lot of rules around how you get an object from ground to overhead or from point a to point b, whereas weightlifting is quite stringent on how the movements are executed,” he said.
Having previously competed at the 2017 World Crossfit Games in Wisconsin, Ahipene said he was relishing competing in the USA once again.
“I bought my tickets last week, everything’s getting a bit real, looking through the itinerary I got a bit excited,” he said.