Australia’s top 12 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® athletes will take the big stage this month on the picturesque foreshore at Geelong’s Steampacket Gardens as they compete for the 2019 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Australian Champions Trophy.
On April 27th, all 15 athletes will compete in the sport’s most physically enduring format. Each of them will take on four of the six STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® extreme disciplines, back to back, in a ruthless knockout competition. The last man standing will claim the title of Australian Champion, and will go on to battle for the title of World Champion at the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® World Championship in Gothenburg, Sweden in May.
"The STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Champions Trophy is wood chopping’s version of the cricket’s Big Bash League. It’s fast, it’s loud, it’s exciting, and it’s high energy all the way," said Lee Gooch, STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Event Director. "Geelong’s Steampacket Gardens is a great location for it. This year’s festival event will include food trucks, live music and kids’ rides - all free thanks to the support of the Geelong City Council."
Only the best have what it takes to complete in the sport’s toughest format, as each athlete uses razor-sharp axes and high-powered chainsaws to chop and saw through four blocks of wood in less than a minute.
The Aussies have a strong history of success in all formats of the extreme sport, but none more so than in the 2017 Champions Trophy competition. In 2017, Australia’s own Brad De Losa from Lithgow, NSW claimed an unmatched third World Champions Trophy title in Hamburg, Germany, making him the most successful athlete in the format. He is the current world record holder at 57.59 secs. De Losa only managed to make 2nd place in 2018’s Australian Qualifier, so he will be seeking redemption in Geelong this month. "It was extremely disappointing to miss the opportunity to go back to Europe and defend my title last year, so I’ll be looking to make up for that in Geelong and prove I’m still the best in the world at the Champions Trophy," De Losa said.
Brayden Meyer from Broadford, VIC and Sterling Hart from Canada are the only other athletes to have claimed the World Champion title since the competition was founded in 2013. Hart took down Mitch Argent from Blackbutt, QLD in a thrilling semi-final in Marseille, France last year on his way to victory. Meyer won the 2016 competition in the scenic mountains of St. Johan, Austria, at an amazing 2,000 meters above sea level.
All eyes will be on Laurence O’Toole from Doncaster, VIC this year after he won the 2018 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Individual World Championship in Liverpool, the sport’s biggest prize in which athletes from all over the world compete in all six STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® disciplines. O’Toole will be looking to continue his amazing form from 2018 into the tough endurance format of the Champions Trophy.
"2018 was a huge year and my aim is to carry that momentum into 2019 by taking home the Australian Champions Trophy and then the World Champions Trophy in Sweden," O’Toole said.
But the title of Australian Champion isn’t the only reward on offer. This year’s eventual winner will claim $20,000 in prize money in Geelong and up to $20,000 more in Sweden the following month.
Australians have a rich history of success in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS®, linked to the sport’s 100-year-strong history where timber industry workers held woodchopping competitions closely simulating their everyday work.
FULL EVENT DETAILS
LOCATION: Steampacket Gardens, Geelong, VIC
DATE: Saturday 27th April 2019
ENTRY: FREE COMMUNITY EVENT!
Qualification Time Trial: 11am - 12pm
Knockout Rounds: 1pm - 3:45pm
Grand Final: 3:45pm
- Laurence O’Toole (Doncaster VIC) – 2018 Individual World Champion
- Brad De Losa (Lithgow NSW) – 2014, 2015, 2017 World Champions Trophy Winner
- Mitch Argent (Blackbutt QLD) – 2017 & 2018 Australian Champions Trophy Winner
- Brayden Meyer (Broadford, VIC) – 2016 World Champions Trophy Winner
- Daniel Gurr (Deloraine, TAS) – 2018 Rookie World Champ
- Jamie Head (Redcliffe, QLD)
- Kody Steers (Sheffield, TAS)
- Brent Rees (Perth, WA)
- Glen Gillam (Toongabbie, VIC)
- Matt Gurr (Deloraine, TAS)
- Blake Meyer (Broadford, VIC)
- Dale Ryan (Katoomba, NSW)
- Chris Owen (Grafton, NSW)
- Jake Dingle (Mundubbera, QLD)
If you can’t make it, tune in to the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Facebook live stream on the day to catch all the axe-tion!