Take a general glance over Nick Best’s social media, and you’ll see a man dedicated to strength. The athlete regularly shares videos of himself deadlifting, benching, and squatting. Even after tearing his lat in April 2021, Best has still found a way to push it with what appears to be every movement under the sun. The athlete now seems ready to make his return to strongman competition after nearly two years away.
On July 7, 2022, over Instagram, Best revealed that he received an invitation to the 2022 Official Strongman Games (OSG) in the Men’s Master’s 50+ division. It will be his fourth time competing at the contest, which will take place on November 11-13, 2022, in Daytona Beach, FL.
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The 2022 OSG will only mark Best’s return to strongman. The 53-year-old is also a powerlifter, and he recently won the 2022 World Raw Powerlifting Federation (WRPF) FQ Classic 2 in the Men’s Masters 50-54 division.
Got my invite to  Official Strongman Games Masters World’s Strongest Man! … It’s going to be one hell of a battle! Here we go!
Strongman and powerlifting are similar sports on some merits, but strongman contests can be more functional overall rather than only having a focus on the big three of the squat, bench press, and deadlift. The experienced Best may have to shift some of his training focus to account for this distinction.
What’s on Deck
At the time of this writing, the Official Strongman Games haven’t released a full roster of the Men’s Master’s competitors for November’s contest. In the past, there have usually been 10 athletes per division. That said, Best himself revealed some of the athletes partaking in the Men’s 50+ division in his Instagram caption.
First and perhaps foremost, there’s reigning Men’s Masters 50+ Champion Michael Saunders, who is back to defend his crown. Joining him is Mark Felix, who set a World Record on the Wrecking Ball Hold at the 2022 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) when he held the ball up for 2:20.49. George Pearson will also appear again, as he looks to improve upon a 10th place result at last year’s contest. Last but not least, there’s Chad Coy, who has competed as a strongman in some capacity since 1998, according to Strongman Archives.
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The events for the 2022 OSG have also not been announced at this time. If they’re anything similar to the 2021 edition, the athletes can expect some combination of the Log Lift for Reps, Car Walk, Deadlift Medley, Carry and Drag, Bag Toss Medley, and in strongman tradition — the Atlas Stones.
According to Strength Results, Saunders won last year’s contest on the strength of victories in four of the six events.
To take first place in the Log Lift for Reps, Saunders completed eight reps of the 255-pound log. He then carried his 700-pound vehicle 50 feet in 11.13 seconds to win the Car Walk. As the competition closed, he successfully tossed six bags from 30 to 45 pounds in weight in 19.14 seconds in the Bag Toss Medley. Finally, Saunders put an exclamation point on his title by lifting all six Atlas Stones (the final weighing 350 pounds) in 36.83 seconds.
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If anyone can challenge Saunders’ bid for a repeat, it might be Best. Best won the 2016 OSG and came in fourth place during the 2017 and 2019 editions. He even qualified for the 2020 WSM, competing with some athletes roughly two decades younger than him.
Given Best’s absence from strongman for a little while, it’s unclear what he’ll bring to the table in Daytona Beach. Judging by his training commitments and history, the field might do well to prepare for a strong flourish from the athlete.
Featured image: @nickbeststrongman on Instagram