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The Item: Career Updates, Special Appearances, Legends Update, Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup

The Scoop: Recently Announced: IFBB Pro League athletes had career updates or made recent guest appearances at various sports, bodybuilding, physique and fitness events. The latest "Andrew Oye's Pro-Muscle Report" Pro Athletes Roundup includes a British legend, an American Mr. California, and a German Giant.

Over the weekend, legendary 6-time Mr Olympia IFBB Pro Dorian Yates, IFBB Hall of Famer IFBB Pro Shawn Ray and gentle giant IFBB Pro Gunter Schlierkamp traveled to Yekaterinburg, Russia, for a VIP guest appearance at the 2010 Russian National Bodybuilding Championships. In his welcome message, Anton Girenko-Kotsuba, Vice-President of AFBF in the Ural region, said, "We worked hard in order to earn the right to hold the Championship of Russia and Eastern Europe in Yekaterinburg. A lot of organizational work was done by the team of supporters. We guarantee that we will make all efforts to conduct this major forum in Russia's bodybuilding at the highest level."  

The "So What?": Efforts to pump up the 22nd Annual Russian National Championships included inviting IFBB Pro League athletes who have built big names in the sport, including a 6-time Olympia Sandow trophy winner from the United Kingdom (Yates); a physique star that won the 1987 NPC California Championships, the 1991 Arnold Classic and 2nd place at the 1994 Olympia (Ray); and a Hollywood actor, who recently appeared as an MMA fighter in an action movie, potentially staging a comeback (Schlierkamp).

Ray's visit to Red Square was a "return trip." He was a featured guest poser at the USA vs. Russia Championships back in 1989. This year, Ray was an award presenter and Yates was a contest judge at the Russian Nationals, which has produced past champions like IFBB Pro Sergey Shelestov, IFBB Pro Alexander Fedorov and IFBB Pro Evgeny Mishin.

Andrew Oye's Verdict: 1993 Mr. Universe Gunter Schlierkamp, who guest-posed at the event in Russia, seems to be using his recent string of appearances as a warm-up for contest season. But should we expect a true return from the German Giant when recent comeback reports about other retirees have yet to be realized? We'll see. Schlierkamp probably wants to improve on his 4th place finish at the 2005 Joe Weider's Olympia Weekend (the 2010 edition was won by IFBB Pro Jay Cutler last month), or to recreate the glory of his post-Olympia win over 8-time Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Ronnie Coleman at the 2002 Show of Strength Championships; yet, it might be wiser to continue pursuing the acting path paved by 7-time Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger -- Hollywood movie star and founder of the Arnold Sports Festival's IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Bodybuilding Championships.

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