Josh Forest captures King Miner title for second year in a row

After ending a streak during last year’s event, Josh Forest held onto the National King Miner crown after a gruelling day of competition during Nickel Days June 23.

Forest and 15 other competitors took part in 11 different mining-related events such as jackleg drilling, hose mending and crib building just outside the Thompson Regional Community Centre.

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Since King Miner veteran Brian Woytkiw did not participate in this year’s festivities for the first time in more than a decade, the field was left wide open for an eager newcomer to swoop in and steal the crown for themselves.

However, Forest, who’s participated in at least the last 10 King Miner competitions and finally ended Woytkiw’s reign as an eight-time champion in 2017, ended up capturing first-place finishes in stoper drilling, hand mucking and pipefitting, while also cracking the top four in all but three individual event categories, netting himself $4,300 in prize money overall.

Competitors Jason Stykalo and Scott Kennedy also put in impressive performances this past Saturday, becoming the first and second runners-up, respectively.

Not only did the pair walk away with plaques and prize money for the team event (alongside Justin Lefebvre and Alex Martin), but they also earned first- and second- place finishes in the log sawing event, which turned out to be the most physically demanding aspect of this year’s contest.

The 2018 National King Miner contest also holds the distinction of featuring Malanie Cutler as the first female competitor to complete all of the events in its 47-year history.

Even though she didn’t crack the top four in any of the individual portions, the Kin Club president told the Thompson Citizen that this was something she wanted to do for a long time and was just happy to finish the competition.

Cutler credits a lot of her success to her fellow competitors, who offered her plenty of advice and words of encouragement every step of the way.

“The guys were very supportive. They walked me through a lot of the events because I don’t work in the mining industry,” she said. “It was very endearing.”

While Cutler isn’t sure if she’s going to compete in next year’s National King Miner contest, she still describes it as a rewarding experience that other women could benefit from.

“If I can do it, anybody can do it and there’s a lot of women who work in the mining industry that I encourage to do it, because it’s a good event to challenge yourself with.”

 

2018 National King Miner Contest Winners

 

National King Miner

King Miner: Josh Forest

First runner-up: Jason Stykalo

Second runner-up: Scott Kennedy

Third runner-up: Gord Whalen

 

Team event winners

Scott Kennedy, Justin Lefebvre, Jason Stykalo, Alex Martin

 

Rookie prize

Micheal Gallant

 

Stoper drilling

First prize: Josh Forest

Second prize: Alex Martin

Third prize: Gord Whalen

Fourth prize: Justin Lefebvre

 

Jackleg drilling

First prize: Gord Whalen

Second prize: Alex Martin

Third prize: Josh Forest

Fourth prize: Troy Martin

 

Crib building

First prize: Scott Kennedy

Second prize: Matthew Macgregor

Third prize: Gord Whalen

Fourth prize: Josh Forest

 

Log Sawing

First prize: Jason Stykalo

Second prize: Scott Kennedy

Third prize: Matthew Macgregor

Fourth prize: Josh Forest

 

Ladder climbing

First prize: Scott Kennedy

Second prize: Jason Stykalo

Third prize: Gord Whalen

Fourth prize: Justin Lefebvre

 

Hose mending

First prize: Troy Martin

Second prize: Josh Forest

Third prize: Gord Whalen

Fourth prize: Jason Stykalo

 

Hand mucking

First prize: Josh Forest

Second prize: Jason Stykalo

Third prize: Alex Martin

Fourth prize: Justin Lefebvre

 

Steel packing

First prize: Scott Kennedy

Second prize: Matthew Macgregor

Third prize: Justin Lefebvre

Fourth prize: Josh Forest

 

Bolting

First prize: Alex Martin

Second prize: Gord Whalen

Third prize: Justin Lefebvre

Fourth prize: Ian Bercier

 

Pipefitting

First prize: Josh Forest

Second prize: Jason Stykalo

Third prize: Scott Kennedy

Fourth prize: Micheal Gallant

 

Nail driving

First prize: Scott Kennedy

Second prize: Jason Stykalo

Third prize: Gord Whalen

Fourth prize: Troy Martin

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