The United States' relay team at next week's STIHL TIMBERSPORTS SERIES World Championship in St. Johan, Austria has been decided.
Defending U.S. champion Arden Cogar, Jr. will captain the five-man team and handle the standing block discipline. His cousin, Matt Cogar, will fill the underhand-chop position. Dave Jewett will handle the single buck.
"Those three positions automatically went to our three best manual cutters," said selection committee member Mike Slingerland. "They're the three best at those events."
The other two postions the stock-saw and alternate will be filled by Brandon Sirguy and Will Roberts, who were chosen by their performances in the 2010 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series National Championship this weekend in Salem, Ore.
"Both of those two positions, we decided to go with the top two point-getters at this event," Slingerland. "I feel like this is one of the strongest events we could ever field. I feel real good about this team."
The five-man team will compete against timbersports athletes from over 20 countries Sept. 3-5. The relay, a first-time event at the World Championship, will pit countries against each other in a seeded, bracket-style format where the U.S. and New Zealand will likely be two of the highest-seeded teams.
"It'll probably start with stock saw, go underhand, then to single buck and finish with the standing block," said Jewett. "My goal as the single sawyer is to gain at least 2 to 5 seconds. The only person in the world who can beat me right now in single bucking is (New Zealand's) Jason Wynyard and the most he's beaten me by is 0.3. If he's not the single sawyer, I feel like I can gain a few seconds to give the choppers a little cushion going into that final standing block."
Lentz wins U.S. title, will compete at world championship
It was an up-and-down day for the "King of the Lumberjacks" Mel Lentz, but a solid hot saw run earned him the title of U.S. champion for 2010. He edged out Mike Sullivan, Will Roberts and 2009 champion Arden Cogar Jr. in the finals on Sunday.
Lentz will the joining the relay team in Austria next week to represent the U.S. team in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS World Championships.