When a competitor walks out on stage and looks and feels better than he/she did in their last competition they are already a winner. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication, not to mention the desire, a very intense longing for something from the heart, to get as far as these athletes have. Most everyone on the planet earth knows by now how it all summed up.
It seemed that we all knew what the outcome would be prior to the contest, but we still managed to be a little disappointed. Ronnie may be the best in the world, but he wasn't his best on Oct. 19, 2002 and the only day that matters is show day, but it didn't seem to make a difference to the judges. We are without doubt big fans of Ronnie Coleman; he just wasn't at his best.
The fact that the crowd was dispersing before Ronnie received his award said an awful lot, and that is, the judges could have done a better job. Nothing against Ronnie, it's not his fault the crowd walked out. He trained just as hard, if not harder then the next guy for this day. By know means did Ronnie Coleman walk away Mr. Olympia 2002 without Kevin Levrone giving him something to think about.
Ronnie better not miss a workout. Kevin Levrone was by far the overall best bodybuilder on stage; he dialed in nicely, presented himself well in all rounds.
Kevin Levrone: First Three Rounds
Round 1 - His quarter turns were textbook, not once was he ever out of form.
Round 2 - Mandatory Posing, Kevin exuded confidence and flowed right into his poses, he has a slight lean that says, hey judges look at me!
Round 3 - Individual routine, Kevin did a phenomenal job, this was what we paid to see and it was worth every penny, he was extremely entertaining, wow! And he kept a smile on his face throughout the show. In our minds and many others, this should have been Levrone's day.
Places 3 through 5 becomes very confusing. Chris Cormier, the "Real Deal Cormier", not that day! Cormier was not looking sharp at all, he got lucky, and after all it was Las Vegas. Dexter Jackson's only problem was that he didn't place ahead of Chris Cormier. On to place 5, Gunter Schlierkamp, the gentle giant. We can't get over the fact that he shows up on show day @ 300lbs dialed in, now that's impressive. He looked great, probably couldn't ever look better, but he'll never be Mr. Olympia. Gunter has 22-inch arms and 19-inch calves, not very symmetrical.
Ideally neck, arms, and calves should measure the same. Also a 35.5-inch waist gives him a blocky physique, but he definitely deserved higher than 5th place. The standing ovation that Gunter received was priceless. Not all the money in the world could have bought that moment. Let's briefly discuss our 7th place winner, Flex Wheeler. How the heck did he manage to place? Craig Titus who came in 11th deserved that spot more than Flex. Talk about playing the odds.
Bottom line is, no one will ever come in and barely beat a multi year Mr. Olympia. In this case that'll be Ronnie Coleman. They will need to demolish him on stage, and comparisons will not be necessary. Regardless of how it all turned out Ronnie Coleman is one to be admired. He worked a regular job for years, trains like a maniac, and does everything it takes to represent his title as Mr. Olympia. Speaking of admiration, how about that Lenda Murray? After retiring in 1997 to establish the Lenda Murray Fitness Firm in Virginia Beach, she returned to take her title back.
Lenda Came in and knocked everyone down a notch. Juliette Bergmann took 1st place this year (lightweight division) without the Ms. Olympia Title. Iris Kyle who placed first last year placed second this year, Vickie Gates who placed 2nd last year, placed 3rd this year, squeezing Yaxeni Oriquen from 3rd to 4th place.
We spoke with Lenda briefly and she plans to hold on to her title for a while. Lenda promised that we were going to like what we saw this year; well she must have made the same promise to the judges. She is now 7 time Ms. Olympia. We are very proud of her and we really admire that competitive edge and that driving spirit to be the best at any age.
The events and the expo were just as exciting as the shows itself. They had everything - new inventions, karate demonstrations, and bodybuilders like Dorian Yates promoting his own products. We met our favorite fitness competitors, bodybuilders, and wrestlers and even made great new friends. We got a chance to sample new products, get free stuff and compete for T-shirts and caps - TeamDixon entered the bench press event.
Rolanda benched 95 lbs (half her body weight) for 34 reps and Devin did 255 lbs (Total body weight) for 25 reps. Go TeamDixon! There were plenty of booths - Bodybuilding.com had the best one by far, we met Troy Alves, he looks great and it was a very motivating experience. The entire event was very positive and filled with health / fitness minded individuals; it was a utopia of hard bodies.
On an average Las Vegas is probably one of the unhealthiest cities, well not on the Mr. Olympia weekend. There were beautiful people everywhere, and yes, its true, healthy people are the happiest people.
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