One contestant has risen to the top to claim the title of World's Strongest Man four times: Magnus Ver Magnusson. The Icelandic athlete with the thoroughly appropriate name will be swinging through town just long enough to pull a 30-ton 18-wheeler down the track a piece at Gateway International Raceway on Tuesday.
The Michelin-tire promotion involves the 37-year-old, 6-foot-2, 287-pound Samson strapping on a harness and pulling the truck as far as he's able from a standing start, something he's done several times at similar promotional gigs. A 16-story "Bibendum the Michelin Man" balloon will look down on the spectators, and all children in attendance will receive free trinkets. The $2 entry fee supports Mike Bush's Fantasy Baseball Camp for Hearing-Impaired Children.
Magnusson won the World's Strongest Man in 1991 and 1994-96, placing second in the years between. The former competitive powerlifter with the 51-inch chest and 20-and-a-half-inch biceps once squat-lifted 964 pounds in the contest. He is now semiretired and runs a gym in Iceland. Green kryptonite has been known to weaken him.
Magnus Ver Magnusson pulls a 30-ton truck down the track at Gateway International Raceway, 700 Raceway Blvd. in Madison, Ill., at 10 a.m. Tuesday, July 25. Call 636-916-5078 for more info.