38-year-old Laurence O'Toole from Watsonia, Victoria, axed the competition and defended his title at the 2020 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Australian Trophy in Melbourne overnight, securing a coveted place at the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® World Trophy to be held in Austria in May.
O'Toole battled it out against 15 of Australia's best STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® athletes in the Original Extreme Sport, chopping and sawing through four blocks of wood in a time of just 1:04.94, beating fellow Victorian and current individual world champion Brayden Meyer by 0.9 seconds in a thrilling Grand Final of the knock-out competition.
O'Toole's victory sees him win the top prize of $20,000 and the opportunity to represent Australia on the world stage, where he will compete against the world's best STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® athletes from 12 countries including New Zealand, USA, Canada and Germany.
"It's always a great relief to win. I'm feeling good today and I'm looking forward to the World Trophy. Austria will be cold and I'm not used to it but I'll have to toughen up. I've got a fair idea of how I'm going to prepare and I know the competition will be fierce," O'Toole said.
"Woodchopping is my life. I'm not a rich person from it but I'm a millionaire with memories. I've had some of the best times in my life that money couldn't buy. It's a great pride to have my family here and to be generational world champions. It's really special to me."
On the way to the final he placed second in the time trial with a time of 1:11.24 to advance to the knockout stages where he beat Jamie Head in the quarter finals in 1:11.91 and Brad De Losa in the semi final in 1:10.52.
FINAL RANKINGS (TOP FOUR)
1. Laurence O'Toole, Watsonia, Victoria - 1:04.94
2. Brayden Meyer, Broadford, Victoria - 1:05.84
3. Mitchell Argent, Blackbutt, Queensland - 1:10.40
4. Brad De Losa, South Bowenfels, New South Wales - 1:15.59