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The Item: IFBB Pro League News, Contest Schedule, Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup

The Scoop: Just Announced: The IFBB Professional League (International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness) released its 2011 schedule of professional bodybuilding championships and events.  

The "So What?": As previously reported in "Andrew Oye's Pro Muscle Report," the IFBB Pro League 2011 contest schedule includes about five new events, starting with the season kickoff show -- the Flex Pro Bodybuilding Championships in Santa Monica, California, which some are calling a "replacement" for the long-running but now defunct Iron Man Pro Bodybuilding Championships that was usually the first contest of the year. Other new additions include the British Grand Prix, Toronto Pro, FIBO USA in Chicago, and World Masters in Miami.

The IFBB Pro League schedule of events: Flex Pro (February 19), Arnold Sports Festival IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Bodybuilding Championships (March 4-6), Australian Pro Grand Prix (March 12), British Pro Grand Prix (March 19-20), Mr. Europe Pro (March 26), FIBO Power Pro Germany (April 16), Orlando Pro -- Europa Show of Champions (April 30), New York Pro (May 28), Toronto Pro SuperShow (June 17-18), Tampa Pro (June 26), Hartford Pro -- Europa Battle of Champions (July 28-31), Dallas Pro -- Europa SuperShow (August 12-13), Phoenix Pro (August 27), Joe Weider's Olympia Weekend (September 16-17), Europa FIBO Power Pro USA -- Chicago Pro (September 30 - October 1), Valencia Pro Grand Prix, Spain (October 8), World Masters Pro (December 10).

Andrew Oye's Verdict: With a slew of new contests, IFBB Pro League athletes making professional debuts, and top names/physiques skipping key contests, it's bound to be an exciting season of competitive pro bodybuilding in the IFBB Pro League.  Athletes will be aiming to gain Olympia qualification and challenge reigning 4-time Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Jay Cutler, 2-time Olympia 212 Showdown Champ IFBB Pro Kevin English, 6-time Ms. Olympia IFBB Pro Iris Kyle, Ms. Figure Olympia IFBB Pro Erin Stern, and 5-time Ms. Fitness Olympia IFBB Pro Adela Garcia.

Contenders like IFBB Pro Phil Heath, IFBB Pro Branch Warren, IFBB Pro Dennis Wolf, IFBB Pro Ronny Rockel and IFBB Pro Victor Martinez seek to fill mantel space with an Olympia Sandow trophy, claiming an honor that has been won in the past by Mr. Olympia titleholders IFBB Pro Lee Haney, IFBB Pro Ronnie Coleman, IFBB Pro Dorian Yates, IFBB Pro Frank Zane, IFBB Pro Sergio Oliva, IFBB Pro Larry Scott, IFBB Pro Samir Bannout, IFBB Pro Franco Columbu, and IFBB Pro Dexter Jackson.

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