Lincoln strongman limbers up for charity Lancaster pull

A Lincoln strongman famed for annual charity challenges, which have seen him power through tense fire truck pulls and deadlift cars, will this year take on a Lancaster Bomber.

In just under three months time, personal trainer Dave Johnson will make his way to Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre in East Kirkby to be kindly lent a Lancaster Bomber.

Dave has been slowly upping the stakes for a series of exhausting challenges in memory of friend Mark Browne, who lost his battle with cancer.

Dave also raises funds to support the Ethan Maull ‘Up Yours to Cancer’ Foundation, set up by Lincoln lad Ethan Maull, who sadly died last year.

In 2013, Dave pulled a 16-tonne fire truck along Station Street in just under a minute.

Last year, he managed 14 reps deadlifting an Audi A4 at St Marks Shopping centre and pulled an 18-tonne fire engine as part of Lincoln South fire station’s 50th Birthday celebrations.

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Kicking off events this year, on July 18, Dave will be deadlifting a BMW 318 (200kg heavier than the Audi). He’ll be joined by friend Craig Collins, who he’s trained up to take the reins and heave a fire truck at St Marks Shopping Centre.

Dave (left) with Craig Collins, who'll be takling the fire truck pull this year.

Dave (left) with Craig Collins, who’ll be takling the fire truck pull this year.

He said: “The first events are once again in memory of Mark Browne and Ethan Maul, and to pay respects to all who have won, lost or are currently fighting cancer. The cash raised will be going the Ethan Maul foundation, and The Fire Fighters Charity again.

“Craig Collins, who i’ve trained up for the truck pull at St Marks, was a friend of Mark’s and has always helped out with the events from day one when I met him in Fitspace gym five years back.

“On August 31 I’ll be pulling a out-of-action Lancaster. This comes after an original conversation with Mark Browne back in 2010 when we joked of pulling a plane. Five years on, and in the month of the 70th anniversary of the official end of the war, it seems fitting that I’ve been offered an iconic WWII bomber to attempt to pull.

“The Lancaster’s serving weight fully loaded could be anywhere between 35 and 40 tonnes.

“I’ve no clue what it will be on the day. It’s got no ammo on board and I’m hoping not a full fuel load, but we will deal with what were given on the day and make the best attempt at it.

“There’s a big story behind the Lancaster and the heritage centre. Also for me as I’ve had family who served in both wars, one of which passed a couple of weeks back.

“This is a personal tribute and mark of respect to all those who fought, and continue to do so in the armed forces. The cash raised for this will go 50/50 to Ethan’s foundation and the heritage centre charity also.

“As far as training is concerned, I’m usually five days a week in the Pacific Gym, increasing weights and doing cardio on a weekend, which is mainly strongman based; tyre flipping, car pulling, I’ve got a training cycle which I’m following leading up to the events and hopefully will manage to avoid injury.”

Dave is in the process of setting up JustGiving pages, but for now, people can find out more about his upcoming challenges and how to donate via his Facebook pages.

Click here for the St Marks charity fundraiser Facebook page.

Click here for the plane pull Facebook page.

Watch some of Dave’s previous challenges: