Steve Weinberger’s 2023 New York Pro takes place May 20 and Stuart Sutherland is one of the current Men’s Open favorites. In a Bro Chat podcast appearance, Sutherland, joined by Fouad Abiad and Iain Valliere, previewed the lineup expected to compete in New York. In addition, the group discussed Hassan Mostafa teaming up with Mamdouh ‘Big Ramy’ Elssbiay‘s trainer Chad Nicholls.
The two biggest bodybuilding events of the year ended with surprising outcomes. Last December, Elssbiay was unable to replicate the success he enjoyed in 2020 and 2021. He lost the Mr. Olympia title to Hadi Choopan, which quickly transformed the Open landscape. Unlike in years prior, a mass monster no longer held the crown, instead, gold was fought for by two former 212 competitors.
Attention turned to the 2023 Arnold Classic next. Fans recognized Nick Walker as the obvious frontrunner given his third-place finish at 2022 Olympia months ago. In the end, Samson Dauda won the show, which ignited more discussions about whether or not the judging process was/is fair.
Given the unpredictable nature of the category, IFBB Pro League contests have never been more exciting. The bodybuilding world will head to the east coast in two weeks for the New York Pro, which was won by Blessing Awodibu last year.
Stuart Sutherland, Abiad, Iain Valliere Talk 2023 New York Pro: ‘There’s Not a Ton of Studs Doing It’
Sutherland said he’s feeling good ahead of his New York Pro appearance. He added that there are a number of competitors making their respective debuts. While it seems unlikely, Valliere teased the possibility of a surprise entrance.
“I feel pretty good [ahead of the New York Pro]. Yeah, one of the things I’m happy about with New York, there’s not like a ton of studs doing it. Like, ther’es a lot of new guys. There’s Carlos. There was going to be Justin [Shier] but he fuc**ng bailed. There’s Nate Spear, he competed last year, it’s not his debut,” said Stuart Sutherland.
“You know, Iain is not going to show up and just sweep the floor with us,” said Stu.
“Maybe I am,” teased Valliere.
“Yeah, you know there’s a chance for a lot of us to kind of show our faces and get recognized there, that we wouldn’t have at another show. You know, with just somebody who is just the odds-on guy to win,” said Sutherland.
Valliere said he’s excited as the show will serve as an opportunity for lesser-known bodybuilders to receive attention. Stuart mentioned a few names like Sergio Oliva Jr who were initially interested in the contest but later opted out.
“It makes it exciting for me. You see the dawn of a new crop coming up. Like you said, there’s no Olympia top five guys in there, where everyone is just talking about one singular person; it makes it interesting. It gives the opportunity for some guys to be seen and talked about and get their moment in the sun,” Valliere said.
Sutherland hopes to find success on the New York Pro stage in a few weeks. He recently guest posed in the company of Labrada and held his own.
“We’re inside of three weeks out and I still don’t know of everyone that’s doing it. I have a list with a white board where I try to keep a list and track it. Sergio might jump into it if he can make it over here.”
Fouad Abiad & Valliere Discuss Hassan Mostafa Now Working with Ramy/Bonac’s Coach, Chad Nicholls
Fouad Abiad and Iain Valliere confirmed that Hassan Mostafa is now working with Chad Nicholls. While competing actively, Fouad said Nicholls had him use substances with anti-estrogen qualities.
“I heard some horror stories about his preps previously about how low he went with food and everything. Then, he started working with AJ and he looked the best he ever looked,” Fouad Abiad said.
“He’s working with Chad [Nicholls],” said Iain Valliere. “He looks good right now though.”
“I don’t know – AJ is really big on anti-estrogens and that – that would scare me off, I mean it worked,” said Stuart Sutherland.
“I don’t think it will be a drastic difference. He’s a little bit like Chad. I don’t think it will be a drastic difference. Chad’s pretty big on – well he was when I worked with him, anti-estrogens too. I think the benefit to someone like Hassan working with Chad, is Chad is very extreme in his diets, and it works for somebody like Hassan because Hassan has so much muscle, he can afford [it]. Yeah, if he drops a couple pounds of muscle while he’s getting shredded, it’s not going to hurt his fuc**ng physique at all,” said Abiad.
Stuart said he doesn’t like the side effects caused by anti-estrogen drugs despite their utility.
“It’s not like the anti-estrogen thing doesn’t work, it just feels horrible,” replied Sutherland.
The last time fans heard from Fouad Abiad outside of his Bro Chat podcast, he joined seven-time 212 Olympia Flex Lewis for an honest conversation about his health. According to Abiad, he’s been suffering from extensive kidney damage and fears he’ll be on dialysis by the time he’s 55.
Fans will get their first taste of what’s to come in the Men’s Open division next week at Jim Manion’s 2023 Pittsburgh Pro, where a star-studded lineup is expected to guest pose, featuring: Nick Walker, Derek Lunsford, Samson Dauda, Hunter Labrada, and Shaun Clarida.