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IFBB PRO LEAGUE ANDREW OYE REPORT: INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF BODYBUILDING + FITNESS ANNOUNCES REVISED IFBB PRO OLYMPIA QUALIFICATION SERIES FOR IFBB PRO LEAGUE ATHLETES

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

The Scoop: Recently Announced: The International Federation of Bodybuilding & Fitness (IFBB) released the following announcement:

The IFBB Professional League, in conjunction with Joe Weider's Olympia Fitness & Performance Weekend, announces the 2015 IFBB Pro Olympia Qualification Series, a points-based system that determines qualifiers for all Olympia divisions.

The IFBB Pro Olympia Qualification Series awards points to competitors placing 2nd to 5th at IFBB Pro League competitions. At the end of the Olympia-qualifying season, the five competitors with the highest point totals in the Olympia Qualification Series qualify to compete at the Olympia.

Since the winner of each competition automatically qualifies, no points are awarded for first place. Additionally, competitors placing in the Top 5 at the Olympia automatically qualify for the following year.

Points and qualifications in the 2015 IFBB Pro Olympia Qualification Series are awarded as follows:

TIER 1 - ARNOLD CLASSIC (USA)
2nd - 8 Points, 3rd - 7 Points, 4th - 6 Points, 5th - 5 Points

TIER 2 - ARNOLD CLASSIC EUROPE (SPAIN), NEW YORK PRO, PRAGUE PRO
2nd - 6 Points, 3rd - 5 Points, 4th - 4 Points, 5th - 3 Points

TIER 3 - ARNOLD CLASSIC BRASIL (BRAZIL), ARNOLD CLASSIC AUSTRALIA, PITTSBURGH PRO, ASIAN PRO (CHINA)
2nd - 5 Points, 3rd - 4 Points, 4th - 3 Points, 5th - 2 Points

TIER 4 - ALL OTHER IFBB PRO LEAGUE COMPETITIONS
2nd - 4 Points, 3rd - 3 Points, 4th - 2 Points, 5th - 1 Point

The "So What?": The Olympia Qualification Series for IFBB Pro card-carrying athletes was instituted in 2012. Most of last year's revisions to the OQS specifications remained intact. A few new changes for 2015: the addition of the Arnold Classic Australia (formerly known as the Australian Pro Grand Prix, won by IFBB Pro Shawn Rhoden last year) in Melbourne to the schedule as a Tier 3 contest; the removal of the Dubai Pro (a Tier 2 contest last year) from the contest calendar; and "Incredible Hulk" IFBB Pro Lou Ferrigno moves the 2nd Annual Ferrigno Legacy Championships (won by IFBB Pro Ronny Rockel last year) from Santa Barbara to Palm Springs, California. As always, for official IFBB Pro League updates and coverage of the IFBB Pro Olympia Qualification Series, stay tuned to "Andrew Oye's Pro-Muscle Report" and Andrew Oye's IFBB Pro Athletes Roundup.

Andrew Oye's Verdict: The Asian Pro (China) remains listed as a Tier 3 contest in the OQS announcement; however, at the time of this report, the event is not yet listed on the actual contest schedule. I'm unsure if this is the result of a mere cancellation or is in any way associated with recent talk of the Arnold Sports Festival expanding its franchise of IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Bodybuilding Championship contests to Asia -- adding to its growing conglomerate of editions in the USA (won by IFBB Pro Dennis Wolf last year), Europe (also won by Wolf), Brasil (won by IFBB Pro Steve Kuclo), and now Australia.

It will be interesting to see how the 2015 Olympia Qualification Series Points System populates the roster of competitors at this year's "Super Bowl of bodybuilding" -- Joe Weider's Olympia Weekend (which celebrated its 50th anniversary last year) -- because several mid-career pros will make strong pushes to up their rankings and several rookies will make pro debuts. The most competitive IFBB Pro League athletes get a shot at a Sandow trophy and the champion-level esteem that has been earned by past Mr. Olympia titleholders IFBB Pro Larry Scott, IFBB Pro Sergio Oliva, IFBB Pro Frank Zane, IFBB Pro Franco Columbu, IFBB Pro Arnold Schwarzenegger, IFBB Pro Lee Haney, IFBB Pro Dorian Yates, IFBB Pro Ronnie Coleman, IFBB Pro Jay Cutler, IFBB Pro Dexter Jackson and IFBB Pro Phil Heath, among others.

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