Young Guns the Future of STIHL TIMBERSPORTS®

The STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series has long been dominated by veteran axemen.

Athletes like Mel Lentz (nicknamed “The King of the Lumberjacks”), Arden Cogar, Jr. and Dave Jewett have won or finished near the top of the U.S. Championship standings for decades.

These athletes are still at the top of their game, but there’s a new, young class poised to challenge these veteran competitors. Many of these athletes have been competing since they were in college, and have years of experience even though they’re still relatively young.

Nathan Waterfield had a personal best year in 2014, finishing fourth at the U.S. Championship. This year’s U.S. Championship takes place in Central Park in New York City, effectively making it a home game for the Cherry Valley N.Y. resident.

Many think Walt Page is the next great athlete on the Series. He finished sixth last year, and that was after earning zero points in the hot saw event thanks to a DQ. Page, who graduated from Cal Poly, has been training aggressively with reigning Collegiate Champion Sam Mulholland-Wong, who is a current senior at Cal Poly. Page himself was a former Collegiate Series national runner up.

If you ask many of the veterans on the Series, one athlete they predict making the leap this year is Jason Lentz. He’s certainly got the last name to be a force in the sport, and his technique has improved to complement his brute power. Another athlete to watch is Matt Slingerland who is the son of fellow veteran Mike Slingerland.

Then of course there is Matt Cogar. The two-time U.S. Champion and the youngest champion in STIHL TIMBERSPORTS history. Coming back from a devastating hand injury before the World Championships in 2015, he will have a great deal to prove as he shoots for a “three-peat.”

The Collegiate Series has acted as a minor league for the Professional Series, and there are several athletes competing this year who got their start in the college ranks. Trevor Beaudry, David Green, Kyle Spry, Logan Scarborough, Tyler White, and Will Roberts all competed in the Collegiate Series.

Veterans like Mel Lentz, Arden Cogar, Jewett, David Moses, and Mike Eash are still forces on the Series. But the young guys are the ones who will carry the torch for the sport in the future.

That future starts in Central Park this summer.