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The Item: IFBB Pro League Olympia Preview, Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup

The Scoop:
Just Announced: Promoters of Joe Weider's Olympia Weekend just announced the Olympia Qualification Series Standings for the 212 Division competitors fighting for spots to compete in the Olympia 212 Showdown at the 2012 IFBB Olympia Bodybuilding Championships in Las Vegas, Nevada (September 29).

212 Showdown Olympia Qualification Series Standings
1. IFBB Pro Marco Rivera, USA, 11 points
2. IFBB Pro Raul Carrasco Jimenez, Spain, 9 points
3. IFBB Pro Shaun-Joseph Tavernier, England, 7 points
3. IFBB Pro Guy Cisternino, USA, 7 points
5. IFBB Pro Derik Farnsworth, USA, 6 points
6. IFBB Pro Sami Alhaddad, Bahrain, 5 points
7. IFBB Pro Mark Dugdale, USA, 4 points
7. IFBB Pro Muhammad Masoom, Pakistan, 4 points
9. IFBB Pro Mboya Edwards, Canada, 3 points
9. IFBB Pro Milton Holloway, Jr., USA, 3 points
9. IFBB Pro Ahmad Ahmad, Sweden, 3 points
9. IFBB Pro William Bonac, Netherlands, 3 points
9. IFBB Pro Charles Dixon, USA, 3 points
14. IFBB Pro Rus Jeffers, USA, 2 points
14. IFBB Pro Daron Lytle, USA, 2 points
14. IFBB Pro Amit Sapir, Israel, 2 points
14. IFBB Pro Nate Wonsley, USA, 2 points
14. IFBB Pro Antonio Morales Vidal, Spain, 2 points
14. IFBB Pro Branden Ray, USA, 2 points
20. IFBB Pro Vinny Galanti, USA, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Rod Ketchens, USA, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Nana Kwasi Ofosu-Manu, UK, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Bola Ojex, Nigeria, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Marvin Ward, USA, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Oliver Adzievski, Sweden, 1 point
20. IFBB Pro Benjamin Nunoz, USA 1 point

The "So What?":
As reported in "Andrew Oye's Pro-Muscle Report," the IFBB Pro Olympia Qualification Series Point System applies to IFBB Pro League athletes' eligibility to compete at the 2012 Olympia Weekend and face reigning the Olympia 212/202 Showdown Champion; however, it has been reported that injured IFBB Pro Kevin English will not defend his title. The International Federation of Bodybuilding & Fitness 2012 contest-circuit competition winners qualified (IFBB Pro Al Auguste, IFBB Pro Lyndon Belgrave, IFBB Pro Curtis Bryant, IFBB Pro Eduardo Correa Da Silva -- who also placed 10th again the Open Division winner IFBB Pro Branch Warren at the Arnold Sports Festival's 2012 IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Bodybuilding Championships; IFBB Pro Jamal Elmadawy, IFBB Pro David Henry, IFBB Pro Tricky Jackson, IFBB Pro Stan McQuay).

The Series' Top 5 qualify for the 2012 Olympia 212 Showdown contest. In the event of a tie, the competitor with the best Top 5 contest placings will be awarded the qualification. The 2011 Olympia Showdown's Top 5 automatically qualified (IFBB Pro Flex Lewis, IFBB Pro Jose Raymond, IFBB Pro Jaroslav Horvath, IFBB Pro Shaun-Joseph Tavernier).

Andrew Oye's Verdict:
As I previously noted, the verdict is still pending as to whether the new Olympia Qualification Series Point System, implemented for the first time in the IFBB Pro League 2012 contest season, served its purpose. Unless a pronouncement of retirement has been made, it is rare that a reigning champion of an Olympia-level division does not return to defend his or her title. Although, as the first (in 2008) and only other athlete to win the lightweight-division Showdown title, David Henry's return to competition from military duty represents another recoupment opportunity.

On a side note: some of yesteryear's "lightweight" contenders at the Olympia level in the 1970s-1980s included IFBB Pro Franco Columbu, IFBB Pro Frank Zane, IFBB Pro Ed Corney, IFBB Pro Albert Beckles, IFBB Pro Boyer Coe, IFBB Pro Mohamed Makkawy, IFBB Pro Danny Padilla, and "Quadfather" IFBB Pro Tom Platz (who went on to a brief stint as Talent Director for WWE CEO Vince McMahon's WBF World Bodybuilding Federation in the early 1990s, which eventually dissolved and its athletes returned to the IFBB and its "Super Bowl of bodybuilding").

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