Tuttle wins “WORLD’S BEST BRICKLAYER” title
Utah mason Scott Tuttle wins the 2016 SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500®
Winning in Las Vegas isn’t easy, but for 38 year old Scott Tuttle of Clearfield, Utah it was almost as simple as another day on the jobsite laying brick. Tuttle, with the help of his older brother and mason tender, Brian Tuttle, took a few days off work to drive to Las Vegas to compete in the 14th Annual SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® World Championship competition on Wednesday, February 3, 2016. It was a five hour drive that paid off big for the Tuttles. Scott beat out 22 other world-class masons by laying 775 brick in one hour to earn the title “World’s Best Bricklayer,” a 2016 Ford F-250 4x4 Super Duty truck, and $15,000 in cash and prizes.
Scott Tuttle’s victory is a tribute to he and his brother’s team work, skills and unrelenting determination to win masonry’s top honor. Whether Scott or Brian were the bricklayer or the tender, the Tuttle brothers have qualified to compete in 13 of the past World Championship battles, which is a record in itself. Both have claimed an award at least once. In 2012, Scott was awarded the SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN® trophy and in 2015 Brian won the SPEC MIX TOUGHEST TENDER® title. In recognition of the preparation and level of expertise needed to win the championship, Scott was asked if he did anything different to train for this year’s competition, Scott replied, “Yes! I built 5 practice walls before the event and over the past few months I’d put them up, then I’d take them back down, and put them back up again–I was averaging around 775 to 800 brick each time.” Although practicing was critical to winning, he made it clear that self-confidence plays a major role. “I prayed to the Lord that I’d stay calm and give me the faith that I had the ability to win.”
Recognized as the Super Bowl of the trade and premiere event during World of Concrete tradeshow held each year at the Las Vegas Convention Center, the contestants will agree making it to the final round is an honor. To earn a spot in the World Championship event, the masons must win their regional qualifier competition and only the previous year’s Champion and Top Craftsman winners are granted a spot to contend. The two-man teams are given 60-minutes to build a 26 foot 8 inch, double wythe brick wall while meeting strict quality standards. Judged by 24 highly qualified industry experts, the award places are based on the highest brick counts meeting the quality standards and competition rules. Following the Champion distinction, the second most coveted title is the SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN award that the panel of judges rates the “Most sellable” wall meeting the required 500 brick count.
Winning masonry competitions since he was a teenager and two-time World Champion in 2008 and 2010, mason Garrett Hood, age 31 came in second this year by laying 716 brick. Garrett and his mason tender Ed Huntley, both with Huntley Brothers Company, Inc. located in Monroe, North Carolina, have set a high bar of speed, skill and stamina. Garrett has probably won more masonry competitions than anyone on the planet. This shows just how tough the competition was this year. Since he started competing in Las Vegas, from 2008 through to-date, in addition to two first place finishes, Garrett has now won three 2nd place awards and a SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN Award at the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 World Championship competition. That speaks for itself.
Third place and the 2016 SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN Award goes to Oklahoma’s native Darian Douthit, age 41 with Providence Masonry located in Miami, Oklahoma, who laid 687 brick. This was his first time winning the SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN Award, which is the second highest prize awarded, and considered by some masons the most desired. This honor is given to the “Most Sellable Wall” constructed over 500 brick. As well, Darian was a 3rd place finisher in the 2013 World Championship.
Tennessee’s mason tender Tony Shelton with Creative Masonry, located in Limestone, Tennessee, took the SPEC MIX TOUGHEST TENDER® Award this year with a winning time of 15 minutes, 22 seconds. Congratulations to Tony for taking home $2,500 for his hard work, and showcasing the important role of mason tenders. Tony won the award in 2014 and has been a team member in two first-place finishes in 2013 and 2015 with mason Fred Campbell. This undercard contest for mason tenders is held before the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 and focuses on the mason tender preparing the mason’s work area in a detailed and pre-defined way in the fastest time possible.
The SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® was established by SPEC MIX, Inc. in 2003 to showcase the skill and craftsmanship of professional masons, and is featured as the headliner event of MASONRY MADNESS™ Day. The SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 World Championship drew as many as 4,000 spectators in attendance with thousands of live webcast viewers who tune in to watch this bricklayer battle, which has become the largest trade competition in the construction industry.
For more details about the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 masonry competition go to www.specmixbricklayer500.com.
About the Author
Jeff Farmakes is the Marketing Communications Manager for SPEC MIX®, Inc.