Pages Navigation Menu

2015 IFBB Tampa Pro – Wrap Up (Open)

2015 IFBB Tampa Pro – Wrap Up (Open)

As we approach the Olympia, a few big names within the sport still seek qualification for the biggest show in bodybuilding; as usual, this results in lower-tier shows with stacked lineups and the 2015 Tampa Pro, Wings of Strength was no exception! Coming into the show as ‘dark horses’ Vancouver champion, Fouad Abiad was a perennial favorite, even as a last-minute entry, as well as the always dangerous Michael Lockett, who has shaken-up the placings already as professional in his rookie season. These expectations would be dashed however, when 2013 NPC USA Champion Max Charles came to Tampa with his most complete package to date. In the process, Max faced a lineup that didn’t expose his weaknesses, simultaneously highlighting the quality advancements he’s made since the year prior and throughout his bodybuilding career, and was rewarded for it with the title of champion.

Max Charles_IFBB Bodybuilding_Tampa

After receiving 4th place at the same Tampa contest last year, Max Charles brought a fuller as well as more conditioned version of himself; and while he can’t change his longer-structure, he’s done a great job of doing the best with what he’s got, in just a few years. The lineup in Tampa was perfect for Max to make his mark, without someone like a Victor Martinez (last year’s champion) to thwart his efforts with the caliber physique Max would need to match in order to make any noise at his debut Olympia. A quality contest with veteran competitors / champions such as Johnnie Jackson and Fouad Abiad, on paper it should have been a stacked show; after brief assessment however, one can see how Max could be capable of walking away with the win in this lineup, when he might have struggled in similar tier / quality show, with competitors of different genetic skill-sets.  One also has to wonder why a competitor such as Michael Lockett didn’t seem to get his fair-shake at this show, when he was arguably as high of quality a competitor as Charles, in a lineup that should have been advantageous to his one distinct disadvantage (a leg that is half the size of another, and still probably better than your best one.)

Michael Lockett_Tampa_2015The show had plenty of big names on stage, but one thing it notably lacked was quality leg development. Everyone in the Top-5, with possible of exception of Havlik who is still a relative unknown to US audiences, has been marked in the past for their lack of leg mass. Surrounded only by each other however, it almost provides a handicap to even the playing-field for athletes in attendance. While Charles has added significant mass in his legs since his USA win, it lacks a quality found in the level competitor he will be facing at the Olympia; but next to an aging JOJ, a slightly off Abiad (after his Vancouver win,) and Lockett with his aforementioned leg damage, there was nobody left to push Charles. Arguably, one of the most conditioned and (always) impressive competitors was Michael Lockett, who given the opportunity to stand next to Charles may have exposed his lack of density; however, the judges kept him in the 2nd callout for majority of the show and away form the East Coast champion.

Luck of the draw (and placings on stage) aside, Max was undoubtably impressive, and with this package would be a threat at any similar tier show he enters. Based off this showing, the gains he has made are apparent but it seems like a daunting task for him to be able to add the quality-mass needed in a short amount of time, to be seriously in the discussion for the most prestigious title in bodybuilding.

IFBB Bodybuilding News

Update, Score Cards from NPC News Online

Tampa Pro_2015_IFBB_Bodybuilding_Score Card Tampa Pro_2015_Score Card_212

Tampa Pro_Wings of Strength_2015

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This