In the world of professional bodybuilding, there have been many greats, many legends, but there have only been 12 men who have earned the title of Mr. Olympia. From the days of the first man to win the crown, the Legend, Larry Scott, to The Myth Sergio Oliva, to the man who propelled the sport to the mainstream Arnold Schwarzenegger, to Lee Haney and Dorian Yates, to the champions of this millennium, Ronnie Coleman and Jay Cutler, the title of Mr. Olympia has been worn with honor and dignity.
As 2010 rolled around, the bodybuilding world was buzzed as the 45th anniversary of the contest was setting up as one of the biggest in history.
Coming in, the experts weighing in claimed that the battle would be between The Gift, Phil Heath, and The Predator, Kai Greene.
Heath, who was primed to win last year, encountered a stomach virus via food poisoning the night before prejudging and lost ten pound due to the illness. As a result, Heath fell to 5th place.
Greene, who is known for having some of the best detail in the history of the sport and arguably the best legs ever, did not come in with his traditional conditioning and as a result came in at 4th place.
But when looking at last years winner, Jay Cutler, who became the first man to lose the title and regain it, as well as Dexter Jackson who overtook Cutler in 2008, both men are older and slowing down. With their youth on their side, Heath and Greene were poised to come into the contest and fight for the top spot.
Competitors such as last years second place winner Branch Warren and others such as Victor Martinez and Dennis Wolf have been discounted by most experts.
Coming in, most saw Heath’s appealing physique and muscle fluidity as being strong enough to overtake Greene’s detail and mass, while others saw it the opposite way.
According to Greene’s mentor and trainer Oscar Ardon, “if that were the case, Lee Labrada or Shawn Ray would have beaten Dorian Yates every time. But for the O, the winner has to be the biggest, hardest bodybuilder.”
Ardon’s point is valid as when looking at the history of Olympia winners, from Oliva to Haney to Yates to Coleman to Cutler, all have been one of the biggest men in the contest that year.
At the end of the day, the winner of the 2010 Mr. Olympia ended up being Jay Cutler for the fourth time. Phil Heath put up an amazing fight, taking second place. Branch Warren rounded out the top thee. Fourth was taken by former Mr. Olympia Dexter Jackson. Fifth was awarded to the comeback story of the year, Dennis Wolf. And sixth was given to a surprise contender, Ronny Rockel.
The fight for the top spot between Cutler and Heath was in fact a nail biter. Heath came in with a physique that was by far the best he has ever shown. Cutler came in with a similar look that he used to regain his title last year. At the end of the day, despite Heath’s better aesthetics, Cutler proved to be too much of a challenge for Heath to overcome in 2010 on the 45th annual Mr. Olympia contest.
The surprises of the evening were clearly Kai Greene and Dennis Wolf. While Greene came in slightly bloated after a near perfect showing at the Arnold for a second straight year, Wolf came in showcasing his best physique ever after not even placing last year. Greene ended up falling to his worst placing in the Olympia to date, a shocking seventh place. Wolf ended up bouncing back to his 2007 position, fifth, reclaiming his title as a future Mr. Olympia caliber bodybuilder.
In other Olympia news, the winner of the 202 and Under Showdown was Kevin English, who also won the award last year. David Henry, disappointingly, took home second place for the second consecutive year. Third place was awarded to Eduardo Correa.
The winner of the Ms. Olympia was Iris Kyle. Kyle’s victory makes her a six-time Ms. Olympia champion. Second place went to Yaxeni Oriquen-Garcia. And the third place position was won by Debi Laszewski.
The Figure champion for 2010 ended up being Erin Stern, who edged out last years winner Nicole Wilkens-Lee, who took home second place. Heather Mae French rounded out the top three once again.
The new bikini division was won by Sonia Gonzales. Second place was taken by Nathalia Melo. And third place was awarded to Nicole Nagrani. In a surprise, favorite Amanda Latona came in fifth place.
And finally, the Fitness winner was Adela Garcia. The win is Garcia’s fifth in a row. She was followed by Tanji Johnson, who took second place. And in third place came Trish Warren, the wife of Branch Warren.