The 2023 Classic Physique Olympia held in Orlando, Florida, from November 2nd to November 5th, was a monumental event that saw 39 of the world’s most impressive athletes vie for the coveted title.
This year’s competition was highly anticipated, making it second only to the prestigious Mr. Olympia contest.
With an array of top contenders, dark horses, and newcomers, the competition promised to be fierce, and the audience was on the edge of their seats to see who would emerge victorious.
Qualification Criteria: The Path to Orlando
Athletes earned their places in the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia through several avenues.
Past champions were granted a lifetime qualification, allowing them to compete for the prestigious title whenever they chose to return to the stage.
The top three athletes from the 2022 Classic Physique Olympia secured their positions, affirming their elite status in the division.
Furthermore, pro show winners during the 2023 qualifying season earned their tickets to Orlando.
While special invitations from the IFBB Pro League or the Olympia promoters were possible, none were expected for the 2023 event.
This strict qualification process ensured that only the most deserving athletes would grace the stage at the Classic Physique Olympia.
The Lineup of Classic Physique Legends
The 2023 Classic Physique Olympia featured a star-studded roster, with athletes from various countries showcasing their finely tuned physiques.
Here’s the complete roster of athletes in the order of their qualification or entry:
- Chris Bumstead (Canada) — Defending Four-Time Champion
- Ramon Rocha Queiroz (Brazil)
- Urs Kalecinski (Germany)
- Mike Sommerfeld (Germany)
- Michael Daboul (United Kingdom)
- Diego Alejandro Galindo (Brazil)
- Matthew Greggo (USA)
- Stephane Matala (France)
- Eric Brown (USA)
- Daniil Famponte (USA)
- Andrei Kozhokar (Russia)
- German Pastor (Spain)
- Woilid Baatout (France)
- Eric Wildberger Lisboa (Brazil)
- Samuel Paquin (Canada)
- Damien Patrick (USA)
- Damian Kuffel (Poland)
- Vahid Badpei (Iran)
- Laszlo Kiraly (Hungary)
- Antoine Loth (Spain)
- Carlos Dommar (USA)
- Fabio Junio Ramos Vale (Brazil)
- John Le (Canada)
- Marcus Perry (USA)
- Jared Thompson (USA)
- Jae Hun Park (South Korea)
- Alejandro Cambronero (Costa Rica)
- Eduardo Oliveira (Brazil)
- Shicheng Jin (China)
- Shi Tian Wang (China)
- Wesley Vissers (Netherlands)
- Christopher Ziller (Germany)
- Gabriel Zancanelli (Brazil)
- Courage Opara (USA)
- Terrence Ruffin (ISA)
- Maxime Yedess (France)
- Breon Ansley (USA) — Former Two-Time Champion
- Hasan Alibrahim (Netherlands)
- Junior Javorski (Brazil)
Past Winners of the Classic Physique: A Legacy of Champions
The Classic Physique division has witnessed the rise of three champions in its history, each leaving an indelible mark on the sport.
Danny Hester claimed the inaugural title in 2016, ushering in a new era of competition.
Following Hester’s victory, Breon Ansley emerged as a dominant force, securing back-to-back titles in 2017 and 2018.
In 2019, the charismatic Chris Bumstead took the crown and continued to reign supreme as a four-time defending champion from Canada.
Initially, there were speculations that Breon Ansley might make a transition to the 212 division in 2023 due to weight restrictions that limited his progress in Classic Physique.
However, the IFBB Pro League adjusted the weight limits for each height in Classic Physique, granting Breon Ansley an additional seven pounds to work with.
This critical modification allowed Breon Ansley to remain in the Classic Physique division and contend for a third title.
His past Olympia championship win automatically qualified him for the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia, setting the stage for a highly anticipated showdown.
Top Contenders: The Battle for Supremacy
The top contenders in the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia created an aura of excitement and anticipation, promising a thrilling competition.
Chris Bumstead emerged victorious in 2022, despite nursing an injured biceps. With Chris Bumstead’s return to the Olympia in full health and Queiroz displaying a more muscular and improved physique, the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia was poised to be a challenging competition for the defending champion.
Terrence Ruffin’s unique presentation style and impressive physique made him a compelling candidate for the title.
At one point, he had faced the daunting task of shedding 26 pounds of muscle to meet the division’s weight requirements.
However, the rule change that granted extra weight leeway boosted Urs Kalecinski’s prospects, increasing his chances of challenging for the title.
Classic Physique Rising Stars with Potential
While the top contenders garnered significant attention, there were several dark horses in the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia, athletes who possessed the potential to break through and claim a spot at the top.
Alejandro Cambronero, despite his impressive track record, was considered a dark horse.
The question was whether he could make a remarkable comeback and establish himself among the elite.
Michael Daboul’s progress since then has not gone unnoticed, and he aimed to make a strong impression at the 2023 Classic Physique Olympia.
His consistent improvement and strong performances in the lead-up to the 2023 Olympia made him a dark horse with the potential to surprise the audience.
Olympia Debuts: A Glimpse of the Future
As with all Olympia events, there were newcomers making their debut appearances in the Classic Physique division.
While many of these athletes were not expected to break into the top 15 in their first Olympia outing, some showed remarkable potential.
One standout newcomer was Daniil Famponte, who had achieved top-four finishes in all three pro shows he entered, including a victory at the 2023 Charlotte Pro.
His consistent performances leading up to the Olympia hinted at the possibility of an impressive debut on the grand stage.
Their ability to win prestigious events on the road to the Olympia signified their potential to make waves in the competition.
His journey was a testament to the hard work and dedication that it takes to compete at the Olympia level, and he was another athlete poised to make an impression in the highly competitive field.
The 2023 Classic Physique Olympia was undoubtedly a star-studded and fiercely competitive event.
As fans and enthusiasts eagerly awaited the results, Chris Bumstead aimed to secure his fifth consecutive championship title against a lineup of challengers eager to dethrone the reigning champion and etch their names in the annals of bodybuilding history.
A Showdown for the Ages
The 2023 Classic Physique Olympia was a spectacle of immense proportions, bringing together some of the world’s finest athletes in the division.
With a diverse range of contenders, both seasoned champions and emerging stars, the stage was set for an epic showdown.
The path to qualification was rigorous, ensuring that only the most dedicated and deserving athletes earned their spot on the Olympia stage.
The top contenders, including the defending champion Chris Bumstead, were determined to make history, while dark horses and newcomers added an element of unpredictability to the competition.
In the world of bodybuilding, the Olympia is the pinnacle of achievement, and the Classic Physique Olympia is no exception.
It represents the culmination of years of hard work, dedication, and sacrifice. The athletes who grace this stage are more than just competitors they are living legends, embodying the spirit of perseverance and the pursuit of excellence.
As the results were announced, the audience witnessed the crowning of a champion, but every athlete who stepped on that stage was a testament to the indomitable human spirit and the relentless pursuit of physical and mental perfection.
The 2023 Classic Physique Olympia was not just a bodybuilding competition; it was a celebration of human potential and the enduring legacy of this iconic sport.
2023 Olympia Classic Physique Division Results
Here are the Complete Results of the Classic Physique Division.
- Winner: Chris Bumstead ($50,000)
- Second Place: Ramon Rocha Querioz ($20,000)
- Third Place: Urs Kalecinski ($12,000)
- Fourth Place: Breon Ansley ($7,000)
- Fifth Place: Terrence Ruffin ($6,000)
- Sixth Place: Michael Daboul
- Seventh Place: Wisley Vissers
- Eighth Place: Mike Sommerfeld
- Ninth Place: Vahid Badpei
- Tenth Place: Jae Hun Park
- Eleventh Place: Carlos Dommar
- Twelveth Place: Alejandro Cambronero
- Thirteenth Place: Gabriel Zancanelli
- Fourteenth Place: Fabio Junio Ramos Vale
- Fifteenth Place: Laszlo Kiraley
- Sixteenth Place: Eric Wilderberg Lisboa