Mel Lentz

Professional Competitor Bio


Nickname: Melvis - The King of the Lumberjacks
Location: Diana, WV
Height: 6'4"
Weight: 240 lbs.
Birthday: May 30, 1959
Job: Logger
Interests: Hunting
Athlete since: 1985

How do you train for the STIHL® TIMBERSPORTS® Series and other lumberjack competitions?
Weight train and practice the event.

When did you begin participating/competing in lumberjack sports and the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series? 
I began competing at 11 years old. I traveled to a few shows with my father and learned that I could pick up a few dollars in the axe throwing events. When my father retired, I started traveling to events with Bob Waibel. Eventually, when I was old enough, I traveled to Australia to learn how to chop from Jim Alexander. I spent several winters in Australia mastering the craft. I became the first and only American to win the 375mm Underhand World Title at the Royal Easter Show during 1985. I also managed to win the single hand sawing world title five times at Sydney. I started competing in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series when it began in 1985. Thus far I've won six US STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series titles during my career. It's not out of the realm of possibility that I could do it again.

How did you get involved in lumberjack sports?
Third-generation athlete. My grandfather, Ben Lentz, competed at the Albany Timber Carnival during the 1940s. My father, Mervin, and my uncle, Corky, took up the sport during the 1960s. I started competing just as my father retired from the sport.

Are you related to any current or former STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series competitors?
My son, Jason, also competes on the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series.

Best/strongest STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series discipline:
All - I have no weak events.

Any advice for the collegiate competitors?
Learn the right way. Learn the proper way to hit the log. Once you know how to hit the log, then you can race.

What pro athlete/celebrity would you like to see try one of the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series disciplines?
Hulk Hogan

Name three songs on your training/working out playlist?
No music in the woods.

Proudest moment in your life so far:
My kids, Jason and Alicia, bring me a lot of joy.