Saskatchewan

Regina hosts North America's Strongest Woman competition

Regina hosted North America's Strongest Woman and the War of the West Strongman competitions on Sunday.

Top three women will advance to World's Strongest Woman competition.

Tracey Halladay, western Canada's strongest woman, competing on Sunday. (Alec Salloum/CBC Saskatchewan)

Professional and amateur strongmen and strongwomen tested their mettle in Regina Sunday.

The 2017 War of the West Strongman and the headlining North America's Strongest Woman competition​ brought out some of the strongest people on the continent. 

For Regina's Taunia Stevens, this was the biggest show of her life. 

"I just started three years [ago]," said Stevens. "There were just a few of us that did it and now it's just exploded."

Taunia Stevens has been training and competing as a strongwoman for three years. (Alec Salloum/CBC Saskatchewan)

Nine strongwomen — five from the United States and four from Canada — were vying for a chance to qualify for the World's Strongest Woman. The top three will attain professional status as strongwomen and advance to the international stage.

Unfortunately Stevens placed 8th after a back injury limited her ability to further compete in the day's events.

Tracey Halladay, who is from Regina and is western Canada's strongest woman, placed third and will compete for the title of World's Strongest Woman.

Despite the fierce competition Stevens said the community and the support offered by her fellow athlete's is second to none.

"If somebody's struggling with an event, we'll be there helping them get through that," Stevens said. "Doesn't matter who it is, we'll always help each other out."

Steve Halladay competing on Sunday. Each tire weighs between 431 kilograms and 454 kilograms. (Alec Salloum/CBC Saskatchewan)

During competitions, strongmen and strongwomen offered support and advice to one another mid-event. 

"That's just kind of how the sport goes, and especially in front of a hometown crowd," said Isaac Maze, Saskatchewan's strongest man under 105 kilograms and technically still an amateur.

Fourteen men took part in the War of the West Strongman event to determine who would advance to Western Canada's Strongest Man competition on July 1 in Regina.

Maze, who came in seventh place on Sunday, said the camaraderie comes with the territory.

The full roster of men and women posing for a photo before the start of the competition. (Alec Salloum/CBC Saskatchewan)

Host and strongman Brad Provick said that during his 15 years in the sport, female athletes have become much stronger.

"If you told me these are the weights you're going to have a strongwoman show for I would have been like, 'Nobody can lift any of that. How is that possible?'" said Provick.

For example, Britteny Cornelius from Kokomo, Indiana, was able to handily deadlift 295 kilograms. 

"It's awesome," said Provick. "This is the biggest stongwoman event ever hosted in Canada." 

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