Myron Mielke's 2009 IFBB Iron Man Pre-Judging Review.

The 2009 IFBB Pro season began with at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The rain outside had no effect on the way things heated up on stage at this year's Iron Man.

The 2009 IFBB Pro season began with at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The rain outside had no effect on the way things heated up on stage at this year's Iron Man. Silvio, Moe and Ronnie were leading the pack during the prejudging.

I woke up this morning and saw bright sunshine outside. No rain for the Iron Man this year. Well, I live up in Palmdale, which is in a high desert area. The weather changed as I approached the Los Angeles basin. It was raining.

As I drove on it became a little more difficult to see. It wasn't bad by any means, but a little rain made it so things were not as sharp to see.

I couldn't help but thinking about the similarities of how small amounts of water effect driving conditions and what a difference it makes in the final placings at every bodybuilding competition. Today was no different at the Iron Man.

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The Show Begins
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dot Mark Dugdale: dot

    I got into the event when Mark Dugdale was about to take the stage. He was the guy I wanted to see. Would he be the same guy we saw at the 2007 Iron Man or the guy we all saw at the 2007 Olympia?

    As he went through the individual posing at the start of the event, I thought he was somewhere in between. From the front he looked shredded and grainy. From the back he wasn't as sharp as in past shows. Like I said earlier, a little water makes a huge difference in how someone will place.

Mark Dugdale Mark Dugdale
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Mark Dugdale At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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    The judging was a little different from previous shows. Normally the callouts are made after the symmetry round and the mandatories begin, but they started hitting mandatories in groups of about eight competitors.

dot Mohammed Bannout: dot

    When the callouts were made, a few surprises came up. The biggest surprise was that Mohammed Bannout was in the first callout. He was shredded. Really shredded. Samir was in the audience giving his cousin coaching tips.

Mohammed Bannout Mohammed Bannout
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Mohammed Bannout At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Silvio Samuel: dot

    Silvio was in good condition, which is no surprise to anyone. He looks like he'll be in first place. Silvio could speed up the time it takes to hit his poses.

    Everyone else on stage is striking the pose and Samuel is still getting ready to hit it. Lee Priest used to do that too. The head judge called "relax" when he would just be getting around to hitting the pose.

Silvio Samuel Silvio Samuel
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Silvio Samuel At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Moe El Moussawi: dot

    Moe El Moussawi looked like he added some size from last year. He looked much fuller but I think he was just a tad smoother than last year.

    His legs are almost looking Platz-like and when he stood next to Silvio, he dwarfed him. I still see a striking resemblance to Ali Malla, a pro competitor from the 1980's.

Moe El Moussawi Moe El Moussawi
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Moe El Moussawi At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Ronnie Rockel: dot

    Ronnie Rockel looks to be in third place. Again, he could be just a bit sharper. His proportion and symmetry is astounding, but it's just that small amount of water he's holding.

Ronnie Rockel Ronnie Rockel
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Ronnie Rockel At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Hidetada Yamagishi: dot

    Hidetada Yamagishi is back. After a brief hiatus from competition due to some legal issues, Yamagishi made his return to the IFBB pro stage.

    He might even pick up a fourth place spot and qualify for the Mr. Olympia again. Hide looked very relaxed and seemed to enjoy being back on stage.

Hidetada Yamagishi Hidetada Yamagishi
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Hidetada Yamagishi At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Ahmad Haidar: dot

    Giving Hide a run for fourth will be Ahmad Haidar. He looked fantastic. His back showed clarity and details like no other guy on the stage.

    He has an aesthetically perfect physique, but he looks much smaller compared to the other competitors. The group of guys, who were sitting behind me, were very impressed with him too.

Ahmad Haidar Ahmad Haidar
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Ahmad Haidar At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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dot Sixth Through Ninth: dot

Johnnie Jackson Johnnie Jackson
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Johnnie Jackson At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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    Marcus Haley seemed like he forgot to flex his legs in most of his front shots. Johnny Jackson had the same problem and wasn't flexing his thighs either.

Marcus Haley Marcus Haley
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Marcus Haley At The 2009 Iron Man Pro.
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    Bannout was very impressive for his first pro and his conditioning was amazing. His chest looked a little flat and he doesn't have the outstanding shape of his cousin Samir, but he did look good. He did a most muscular shot the way Joe Meeko use to hit it back in the late 1980's.

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Conclusion
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It'll be interesting to see how things turn out. Well, many things could change before the night show, but this is the way I see it:

  1. Silvio Samuel
  2. Moe El Massouwi
  3. Ronnie Rockel
  4. Hidetada Yamagishi
  5. Ahmad Haidar
  6. Mohammed Bannout
  7. Eddie Abbew
  8. Mark Dugdale
  9. Marcus Haley
  10. Up for grabs