by Curlan Campbell, NOW Grenada
- Team Grizzly total medal count 9, 4 of which are gold
- Alexander quite proud of his teammates
- Still training without proper equipment
Team Grizzly now leads the new generation of Grenadian strongman competitors on the international arena.
Their recent participation at the Oregon Feats of Strength Competition held in Prineville, Oregon in March, yielded the team taking home 4 medals, including 2 gold, bringing their total medal count to 9, 4 of which are gold.
In the Novice Lightweight 231-pound Category at the Oregon Feats of Strength, Marlon Noel placed first; Matthew Charles took 2nd place. In the Men’s Masters Heavyweight 231+ Category, Dominic (Shark) Pierre took home the gold medal. Team leader Marcus (Grizzly) Alexander, who won placed first at the 2017 Oregon Feats of Strength Competition, took 3rd place Open Heavyweight 300-pound Category. Ronald Duprey who is also a team member placed 10th in the Novice Lightweight 230-pound and under Category.
The team’s achievement on the big stage did not come easy as they struggled with a number of challenges including not having the proper equipment to train for a competition of that nature.
Pierre said their performance led them to receive international support to secure proper training equipment free of cost but said they will need the Ministry of Sports to assist with clearance through customs. “We are trying to get the ministry to help us clear some equipment that they want to send [to] us from the [united] states, it will be a great help.”
Noel crowned off his first entry into the strongman competition with a win and but said his preparation prior to the competition pushed him to his limit. “I got interrupted in my training for 2 months and then I only had like a month just prior to the competition to train, but I consulted with one of my teammates and team leader and someone who is like a brother to me Marcus (Grizzly) Alexander, and he told me that he had the confidence in me that I could do it. So that one month we did a lot of work, it was really strenuous sometimes I was going home really beat up but I guess the work paid off after all.”
Noel looks forward to competing in a heavier weight class next year. “Being the competitive person I am, I would love to compete in a heavier weight class and definitely give the same or better showing of myself next year.”
Charles said this was his second attempt at the Oregon Feats of Strength which proved to be much more difficult as the team had to endure harsh weather temperatures, but despite the odds, he said he is prepared for next year’s competition. “The cold did affect us in some way, I endured an injury because I couldn’t stay as warm as I could down here, but I still end up pushing through the pain… Now I am going to keep training hard. I know what to expect, never put [any] doubt in myself because I realise that the mind is a powerful thing so now I am going to keep training for the next upcoming events and the host already spoke to us and he is already welcoming us for next year, so I am going to prepare for that as well.”
Alexander is quite proud of his teammates. He said the Grenadian public can expect more for them in the coming months. “All of the guys are hyped right now and everybody is over-motivated to compete and I can tell you to look out for even better results from every one of us.”
Alexander is awaiting an invitation to participate in the Strongman Champions League after qualifying at the River City Barbell Classic in January where he placed 2nd in the Men’s Open 275-pound category.