Crystal Lake resident Quint Zambon has powered his way to the top of the strength field.
Zambon took third earlier this month in the lightweight division of the Arnold Amateur Strongman World Championships in Columbus, Ohio. En route to his third-place finish, Zambon set a lightweight world record in the Last Man Standing Log, pressing 305 pounds.
The 35-year-old Zambon has been head strength trainer and speed specialist at Davis Speed Center in Crystal Lake for five years. He is also self-employed as a strength coach.
Zambon said just getting to the Arnold, named for body builder turned action hero turned politician Arnold Schwarzenegger, is an accomplishment.
“Every year the goal is to get there,” Zambon told the Northwest Herald. “To be able to finally get to the stage with guys that I like was a great time.”
Zambon won the Last Man Standing Log with a press of 285, but opted to go for the world record in the 175-pound division. He said people questioned his move, with another event in the two-day competition still to go. Zambon said he never gave going for the record a second thought.
“I had to fight for it,” he said. “The crowd got louder and louder. It was such a cool experience.”
Zambon’s third-place finish qualified him for the North American Strongman competition later this year.
To get to the second day of the Arnold Amateur, Zambon finished tied for second in the Giant Dumbbell, pressing the 150-pound weight six times; sixth in the Super Yoke, walking a 600-pound weight 120 feet just more than 23 times in 60 seconds; fourth in the Farmers Walk, carrying 285-pound weights 60 feet just more than 15 ½ times in 60 seconds; and fourth in the dead lift medley, completing six reps in the 500-pound lift.
Mistakes in the Farmers Walk had competitors carrying 285-pound weights when they were supposed to be 260 pounds and a powder coating placed on the weights, making them slippery.
When he dropped the weights, Zambon thought his goal of making it to the second day was shot.
“As soon as I dropped them, I thought my day 2 was over,” Zambon said. “It was a little nerve-racking.”
With his world-record performance in the Last Man Standing Log, Zambon was sitting in second heading to the competition’s final event, Power Stairs, which required athletes to carry a 260-pound cylinder up five stairs, placing the weight on each stair. Zambon was the slowest of the final day’s four competitors, completing the task in 23.22 seconds, more than five seconds behind the third-place finisher.
“It went smooth, but I clipped one of the stairs,” Zambon said. “Once I did that, winning was done.”
The one point he earned for the fourth-place finish in the event dropped Zambon to third overall.
Even though thrilled to make it to the podium, Zambon said it meant more to him competing with a supportive group, cheering each other on each step of the way.
“There’s a lot of mutual respect. It was great to share the stage with them,” Zambon said. “I don’t ever think I’ve seen a sport with as much camaraderie.”
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