- Title: Qataris compete for 'Strongest Man' title
- Date: 4th December 2016
- Summary: SPECTATORS WATCHING COMPETITION
- Embargoed: 19th December 2016 16:26
- Keywords: Strongest man competition Qatar Doha competition
- Location: DOHA, QATAR
- City: DOHA, QATAR
- Country: Qatar
- Reuters ID: LVA0025BGWTAT
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: In a test of ultimate strength and power, a selection of Qatari men took part in a competition to win the title of Qatar's Strongest Man 2016 on Friday (December 2).
Fourteen competitors took part in a series of challenges to test their brawn.
The event is now in its 4th year and was hosted by Aspire Zone, a well known sport training facility.
This year the contest has been opened up to expats, eight of whom took up challenge. Previously it was restricted to Qatari nationals.
The spectacle attracted a large audience, with many bringing their entire family to cheer on contestants.
One spectator, Khalid Sherif said it was important to promote sports that were relatively rare in Qatar.
"All sport events are important in Doha. Especially as athletics and weight lifting are new here. We should support it," he said.
Participants took part in five challenges comprising of truck pulling, deadlifting, sand bag lifting, tyre flipping, as well as heavy weight and car lifting.
Aspire Zone Events Manager, Abdallah al-Khater said that from a simple idea, the event has gained momentum over the years.
"The first edition was the first time we organised such an event. We had little experience. Today the number of participants and audience has tripled. We have eight expat contestants and six Qataris in fierce competition," he said.
Fahad Al Haddad won the coveted title for the second year in a row.
"I prepared quickly for two months. I trained with coaches. Some competitors train on their own, others train with coaches. The experienced competitors were able to progress faster," he said confidently.
Kenya's Christopher Oketch emerged victorious in the expat category, with an impressive performance in the 'truck pulling challenge.'
Portuguese Ricardo Ferreira took second position, while Egypt's Mohamed Duwaidar was third.
Aspire Zone says the event is a small part of its role in encouraging Qatari's to be more active and reduce high obesity rates nationwide.
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