Muscle Sport Magazine

Full 2012 Olympia Weekend Review – Heath, Lewis, Kyle, Stern & Garcia Victorious

When we reflect back on the 2012 IFBB Olympia Weekend, there will be a number of stories that came out of it which will be bantered about for years to come. Friday evening gave us a new Bikini Olympia champion in Nathalia Melo, who wrestled the title away from runner-up Nicole Nagrani by a single point on the judge’s scorecards. Although Adela Garcia was able to hang on to her Fitness Olympia crown, she had to endure a difficult challenge from the up-and-coming Oksana Grishina, who took second place and appear to be the heir apparent in this category. Then in women’s bodybuilding, Iris Kyle did it again but a slimmed down and peeled Debi Laszewski nearly unseated her.

Then on Saturday, two more new champions were named when Erin Stern walked out of the Orleans Arena with the winner’s check and the Fitness Olympia title and left her rival Nicole Wilkins in the bridesmaid’s spot. Kevin English, the defending 212 Showdown champion did not compete due to injury and in his absence, James “Flex” Lewis brought a classic aesthetic physique to the stage and took the title.


But the intense close battles that occurred over the prior 24 hours were merely the warm-up act for what was to follow in the men’s open division. Phil Heath was the favorite coming in and did not disappoint, winning his second consecutive Sandow. But Kai Greene gave ‘The Gift’ all that he could handle and has nothing to hang his head about.

But perhaps the biggest surprise of the entire weekend was Shawn Rhoden, who placed 11th at his inaugural O last September and was not really considered a threat to be in the top six until vert recently. ‘Flexatron’ had won his last two shows at the Tampa Pro and Europa SuperShow, but it remained to be seen if he could maintain that conditioning and then outshine a much more experienced and massive line-up than he in his recent victorious moments. By placing third, he has placed the industry on notice and his more streamlined pleasing physique can  – and will – place higher than the likes of Branch Warren, Dennis Wolf and Even Centopani at any show on the schedule.


6th – Teresa Anthony, USA
5th – Mallory Haldeman, USA
4th – Heather Dees, USA
3rd – Candice Keene, USA
2nd – Nicole Wilkins, USA
1st – Erin Stern, USA


6th – Tricky Jackson, USA
5th – Al Auguste, Haiti
4th – Jose Raymond, USA
3rd – Eduardo Correa Da Silva, Brazil
2nd – David Henry, USA
1st – James “Flex” Lewis, UK


10th – Lionel Beyeke, France
9th – Johnnie Jackson, USA
8th – Evan Centopani, USA
7th – Toney Freeman, USA
6th – Dennis Wolf, Germany
5th – Branch Warren, USA
4th – Dexter Jackson, USA
3rd – Shawn Rhoden, USA
2nd – Kai Greene, USA
1st – Phil Heath, USA

Scorecards courtesy of


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