Larne strongman returns to TV challenge

Chris McNaghten putting his strength to the test in a previous competition.
Chris McNaghten putting his strength to the test in a previous competition.

Larne’s Chris McNaghten will be competing in the UK’s Strongest Man show this weekend in St Albans, England.

Athletes face 13 gruelling events to find out who’s the strongest in the UK. The show is filmed for Channel 5 and will be aired around Christmas time.

Several years ago, Chris took a break away from the sport to open Inspire Gym Larne. Now he is back vying to again become one of the top strongmen in the country. This year, he placed third in Ireland’s Strongest Man to qualify for the show.

A total of 16 participants from around the UK and Ireland have been selected to compete.

Chris said: “ The UK’s Strongest Man is the toughest strongman title there is in Britain and Ireland. Most shows are decided on just one day, we have three days one after the other and if you make it to the end you’ll be feeling it for several weeks later.”

Thought to be the only openly gay strongman competitor in UK and Europe, Chris has become a LGBTQ ambassador as well as mental health champion.

It’s through his success and being a public figure that he is bringing a Pride event to Larne on August 17.

Chris continued: “For me London is a great place to compete. I have a huge following and support in London from the LGBTQ community there, so I’ll have plenty of supporting coming from the 5,000 strong crowd.

“I feel so lucky to have the huge support and following I have. I very much compete not just for myself now but for the fans that follow me and my message. It’s an added pressure to do well but in a good way not bad way.”

The competition runs from Friday, July 26, through to the finals on Sunday, July 28.