The Dutch Giant – Richard van der Linden – Strongman

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Strongman Richard van der Linden
Richard pulling a TRAIN

Our tour of the Strongman World, takes us this week to the Netherlands, and to a chat we had with Richard van der Linden, one of the biggest ever Dutch Strongman competitors.

Strongman Richard van der Linden
Richard pulling a TRAIN

Phil Burgess: What’s  your Age, Height and Weight?

Richard Van Der Linden: I’m 43 years old, 2 meters tall and I weigh 168kg.

Phil Burgess: What Strongman Competition result are you the proudest of?

Richard Van Der Linden:  I came third in the Strongman Champions League SCL in 2009 and this was my first big competition against some top athletes who I had to fight hard against.

Phil Burgess: What is your best Log-lift, squat and dead lift?

Richard Van Der Linden: 

  • Log-lift 165kg,
  • Squat 400kg
  • Deadlift 380kg

Phil Burgess: You have placed 2nd in Netherland’s Strongest Man 3 times, when do you think you will finally win?

Richard Van Der Linden:  I think I can win when the conditions allow and the ball rolls in the right direction 🙂

Phil Burgess:What is your favourite event and why? And your least favourite?

Richard Van Der Linden: Events which require a high level of conditioning are my favourite.  My least favourite is the LOGLIFT, because due to my height, I have to lift it up through a great distance..

I am really working hard to improve it.  I let the most points slip in this event.

Phil Burgess: What is your occupation when you are not competing?

Richard Van Der Linden: I work with young people on the street, making sure that for the problems that these young people have they are able to talk with me to try and solve.

If this fails then we go in a different way to solve their problems and that is to give a ticket for an infringement/violation.

Phil Burgess: Where are you from in the Netherlands?

Richard Van Der Linden: I live in Hoofddorp which is next to Amsterdam’s Schiphol International Airport.

It is a great city to live in and it is still growing.

Phil Burgess: Which Dutch Strongman in history do you most admire and why?

Richard Van Der Linden: It’s still Ted Van Der Parre as he is the only Dutchman who has ever been the Worlds Strongest Man (1992)

Phil Burgess: What do you love about being a Strongman Competitor? And what irritates you?

Richard Van Der Linden: I love moving the heavy weights in Strongman, when I compare with my past as a bodybuilder.

Also as a strongman, I have more fun than just in the gym training. Then as well there are lots of competitions abroad.

It does annoy me however, if I’m on vacation and lots of people want to have a picture taken with me, while I’m trying to spend time with my family.

Phil Burgess: Finally, what makes a great strongman competition to both compete in, and for a crowd to watch?

Richard Van Der Linden: There needs to be a beautiful struggle that makes the game exciting and there should be events where the athletes are competing directly against each other.

Thanks Richard – the next time I fly into Schiphol Airport en route to the UK, I will have to look out of the window, and see if I can see you practicing your Log Press 🙂