California’s Strongest Man 2017  

On March 25th, ECWC and the Freak Factory hosted it’s 9th California’s Strongest Man contest in Huntington Beach. The show also marked the 15 year anniversary of the first California’s Strongest Man hosted by the Freak Factory at March Air Field. The sun was shining as usual in sunny Southern California and we had a beach full of spectators there to find out who would be California’s Strongest Man and Woman for 2017.
As usual, the show ran fast and efficiently with the biggest team of pro strongmen on staff including America’s Strongest Man x 3 – Sean Demarinis, NAS National Champions – Cameron Gardner and Casey Garrison, World’s Strongest Man Finalist – Martins Licis and O.G. Pro Strongman and CSM promoter – Scott Brengel. California’s Strongest Man was ready to go!!
The show kicked off with the choose your weight for reps Log Press. ECWC Strongman competitors Liefia Ingalls, Emily Elliot and Tommy Yannuzzi took the win in the HW Women’s, LW Women’s & LW Men’s divisions. Tommy hitting an easy 305 lb log for 3 reps, Liefia hitting 155 lbs for an easy 8 reps in about 30 secs… While Alberta’s Strongest Man – Brad Shepard pulled the win by hitting 330 lbs for a double. 
The second event was the fan favorite – KEG TOSS!! The competitors had to toss 6 kegs over a 15.5 ft post for time. Top honors went to ECWC Strongman competitors – Ashley Crawford and Emily Elliot in the women’s divisions and in the men’s LW division – Alberta’s Strongest Man and new comer – Derrek Cox finished all 6 kegs in 32 secs, and William Ramirez blazed the course for the HW’s in just under 16 secs.
That brought us to the midway point on the 2 inch handle Farmer’s Walk for 200 ft. Only 3 women had the grip to finish the 200 ft. with ECWC squirrels – Liefia Ingalls and Ashley Crawford both finishing the course in 26 secs for the HW women and the viking squirrel – Sherri Fontes was the only LW woman to finish the course. In the LW men Derek McKracken took a narrow win with 44 secs, with Tommy Yannuzzi in 45 secs and Derrek Cox in 47 secs. In the HW’s, Brad Shepard took the win in 51 secs and Jacob Finerty (CSM 2016) was the only other HW to complete the course.
The fourth event of the day was the Tire Flip. Liefia Ingalls and Ashley Crawford took 1 & 2 in the HW Women with blazing times of 28 and 35 secs, while Emily Elliot and Sherri Fontes took the LW division. Derrek Cox and Tommy Yannuzzi were the only LWs to complete the 10 flips with the 900 lb tire in 47 and 49 seconds, respectively. In the HWs, Jacob Finerty with 9 flips and Nick Romero and RJ Ziegler showed off their might turning the 1200 lb tire for 8 reps each. 
In the final event, the women had their choice of repping out a 185 lb or 240 lb stone. Liefia needed 6 reps with the 240 lb stone to seal the win… and that she did in blazing time to claim her 2nd California’s Strongest Man title. In the LW women, Emily Elliot closed the show out with the 240 lb stone for 4 reps and takes 1stin the division.
In the men’s LW division, it came down to the stones. Only 3 points separated 1st and 2nd place going into the event. Tommy Yannuzzi took his 3rd event win, but Derrek Cox holds onto the lead by placing a close 2nd in the Atlas Stones and squeaking out the overall in a narrow victory making for an exciting ending.
Speaking of exciting endings, Brad Shepard was in the overall lead in the HW men’s division by 2.5 pts to RJ Ziegler and 4 pts the Andrew Wickham sitting in 2nd and 3rd, respectively. Only Nick Romero, Kevin Wickline and Andrew Wickham were able to platform the 5th stone at 400 lbs. And taking the overall win in a stunner with zero event wins, but an overall solid performance – Andrew Wickham. Brad Shepard finishes in 2nd by 2 pts and rounding out the top 3 – RJ Ziegler.
Big thanks goes out to all of the staff at California’s Strongest Man for busting their butts all day. Special thanks to our sponsors: East Coast West Coast Strength, Speed & Conditioning (ECWC), SBD Knee & Elbow sleeves, Egg White International, Marc Pro EMS Devices, Blackbull Chop House and Delta Dental/Aliza Canciller. Another successful year in the books and ECWC is again looking forward to helping Gary Montoya in August with Northern Nevada’s Strongest Man!!  For details on next year’s event, check out:
Dione Wessels