IFBB Pro League Contest Results, Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup
Just Announced: IFBB Pro Branch Warren was declared the champion of the Open Division at the 2011 IFBB British Grand Prix Pro Bodybuilding Championships over the weekend. With his freakish thickness, Warren barreled over the likes of tenacious IFBB Pro Roelly Winklaar, who received 2nd place, and IFBB Pro Johnnie Jackson (2009 IFBB "World's Strongest Bodybuilder" Powerlifting Challenge champion), who landed in 3rd place. IFBB Pro Ronny Rockel and IFBB Pro Michael Kefalianos were placed 4th and 5th, respectively.
The remaining field: IFBB Pro Toney Freeman (6th), IFBB Pro Essa Obaid (7th), IFBB Pro Alvin Small (8th), IFBB Pro Thomas Benagli
(9th), IFBB Pro Tomas Bures (10th), IFBB Pro Mario Van Steenberghe (11th), IFBB Pro Ian Wadley (12th), IFBB Pro Dainius Barzinskas (13th) and IFBB Pro Ian Morgan (14th).
The "So What?":
As reported in "Andrew Oye's Pro-Muscle Report," the Top 3 IFBB Pro
League athletes at the British Grand Prix Pro Bodybuilding Championships
earn Olympia qualifications to challenge 4-time Mr. Olympia IFBB Pro Jay
Cutler at Joe Weider's Olympia Weekend in Las Vegas (September 16). Branch Warren is still celebrating his win at the Arnold Sports Festival's 2011 IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Bodybuilding Championships earlier this month. While "Quadrasaurus" (akin to IFBB Pro Paul DeMayo's nickname
"Quadzilla" and IFBB Pro Tom Platz's nickname "Quadfather" for well
built legs) certainly has his share of fan support, Warren's recent wave of success is not without debate.
Some bodybuilding fans, like those who feel Ronny Rockel should have placed higher or even won the contest, protest Warren's brand of dominant, "non-classic" mass as the gold standard. Nevertheless, Warren is currently the man to beat on the IFBB Pro League circuit of pre-Olympia contests. Interestingly, Tomas Bures won Joe Weider's Amateur Olympia Bodybuilding Championships also staged this weekend, earned his IFBB Pro card, and immediately got his first taste of life as a professional bodybuilder in the International Federation of Bodybuilding & Fitness by jumping into the Grand Prix Pro lineup.
Andrew Oye's Verdict:
Kudos to the event's featured guest-poser IFBB Pro Francis Benfatto, particularly amid this "aesthetics versus density" debate. The classic-physique icon was recently featured in MUSCLE INK Magazine in a Legends Series piece called "Mass With Class." On another note: Are the lights fading in the face of age, or can IFBB Pro Toney Freeman, who finished 6th in London, regain the shine that once celebrated his X-frame as an impressive blend of mass and fine lines?
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