Canadian powerhouse Chris Bumstead has steadily become one of the sport’s most popular attractions. In a Voice of Bodybuilding podcast, Bob Cicherillo argued that Cbum wouldn’t have found success without the Classic Physique division. In addition, Cicherillo examined Bumstead’s chances in a future Open show.
Thus far, Chris Bumstead has been near-unstoppable throughout his bodybuilding journey. Classic Physique, which was first established in 2016, was designed for athletes who display looks reminiscent of Golden Era talent such as Frank Zane, Robby Robinson, and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
In 2019, Cbum dethroned the two-time Classic Physique Olympia Breon Ansley. Since taking the reigns, Bumstead’s complete physique and charisma have only bolstered the sport’s popularity. However, his career has not been without obstacles. Last year, Bumstead split with his long-time training partner Iain Valliere, who is currently in prep for the 2023 Toronto Pro Supershow.
Approximately 12 weeks from last year’s Mr. Olympia, the 28-year-old joined Hany Rambod. Working with several top-tier athletes, Rambod is widely respected for his proprietary training strategies. He currently guides Andrei Deiu, Derek Lunsford, Hadi Choopan, and many others. Despite suffering from a torn bicep in the weeks leading up to 2022 Olympia, Bumstead refused to let the setback jeopardize his status as champion.
And while Bumstead has publicly stated he’s on the hunt for a fifth Classic Physique title, Bob Cicherillo is confident the young star could make waves in the Open. In fact, Cicherillo argued that Cbum could potentially hold his own against names like Nick Walker and Samson Dauda with an added 15-20 pounds of muscle.
Bob Cicherillo Says Chris Bumstead with Extra 15-20 Lbs ‘Wouldn’t Do Poorly’ in Open at Mr. Olympia
Cicherillo highlighted a conversation he had with Bumstead recently about whether or not Chris would have a career without Classic Physique.
“I got to ask the golden question Chris, nobody has ever asked Chris this question. The Classic Physique division was put in not that long ago, brand new, what would you have done in your career or would you have had a career if there was no Classic Physique division?” asks Cicherillo.
Initially, Bumstead tried his luck in the Men’s Open division. He later decided it wasn’t a suitable fit.
“I almost retired. I’m not going to lie, in 2016, I turned pro as an Open bodybuilder at heavyweight, at heavyweight, not superheavyweight. At 6″1′ I was probably one of the smallest guys on stage. I know a lot these judges were here judging me, so thank you for that pro card, I appreciate it. Honestly, I was ready to be done.
I didn’t think I had a future in Open bodybuilding. It wasn’t something for me. It’s probably every single year, every single day when I step on stage, I’m so grateful for the Classic Physique division. I think it’s opened up such a bigger variety of scope of people to watch the sport and come into it. It’s a much more modern age thing,” Bumstead explained.
Bob Cicherillo argued that Bumstead wouldn’t have the success he enjoys today without the Classic Physique division.
“Dan [Solomon] isn’t that something? To think how different the landscape would have been if this division doesn’t exist, Cbum doesn’t exist. At least in the terms we know now, he’s amassed a huge following,” Cicherillo said.
“To take his physique and to get himself in conditioning and retain the amount of size that’s necessary and put it all into a beautiful package that has brought him Olympia titles. So, I mean, I think I have more confidence in Chris’ physique than he did back in the day when he first started. The question is, would he have the success that he has?” Bob Cicherillo asks.
“Chris was quick to point out without this division he probably wouldn’t have done much of anything. Why is that? I don’t think he’d have the confidence that he clearly has now. He had some success but like he said, it took him a while to even get to that level. Then, he was in with the Open bodybuilders, he started as an Open bodybuilder. I don’t think he would have done poorly. Clearly he has the tools or he wouldn’t be where he is today.”
Given rampant talks about Cbum moving to the Open, Bob Cicherillo gave his take on the matter.
“The question remains, could he have done well in the Open? A lot of people think if he just stepped into the Open now, even where his weight is, that he would do well. I don’t know if I’d go that far. Well, yes. He would be a contender and he would be up there. No question he’s a top 10 guy. The question would be can he break the top three? Would he be a contender for the title?”
According to Cicherillo, Bumstead could be a top-three Mr. Olympia threat with an added 15-20 pounds.
“Could he stand next to a Samson Dauda, a Big Ramy, a Nick Walker, any of the current guys occupying those top five top six slots? I believe with 15-20 pounds he probably wouldn’t sacrifice too much conditioning,” added Cicherillo.
This isn’t the first time Bumstead competing in the Open has been brought up. Bumstead tackled the subject himself during a recent The Truth Podcast with Hany Rambod. He made it clear that he would compete at the Arnold Classic in the Open if they made the show two or three weeks after Mr. Olympia.
Fans and Bob Cicherillo included, are looking forward to seeing Bumstead step back on stage. He will put his Classic Physique title on the line in November, where he will aim to become a five-time champion.