Nick Walker has an idea of who will finish atop the podium at the upcoming 2024 Arnold Classic. In a recent The Menace Podcast, Walker discussed his best poses and predicted Hadi Choopan, Samson Dauda, and Rubiel Mosquera will fight for gold in Columbus, Ohio.
The official competitors list for the highly anticipated 2024 Arnold Classic was released in mid-December, and fans have already begun zeroing in on favorites and dark horses. Among the top threats, Samson Dauda will return, having set his sights on a second Arnold Classic title. In 2023, Dauda emerged as the AC champion following a heated showdown against Nick Walker.
At the 2023 Olympia contest, Walker was forced to pull out due to a hamstring and calf tear. While he was under the impression he would have won the show, the bodybuilding community will never truly know. Instead, the finals at the last Olympia saw Derek Lunsford narrowly defeat his teammate Choopan to become the sport’s first-ever two-division Mr. Olympia champion.
Laying out his plans, Walker made it clear he would skip the 2024 Arnold Classic in favor of making improvements to his physique for the Olympia stage. Now that he’s sidelined himself from the big show in March, Walker joined a round table of bodybuilding veterans to explain his top three predictions.
Nick Walker Gives Top 3 Predictions for 2024 Arnold Classic, Critical of Hadi Choopan’s Progress
Check out Nick Walker’s top three picks for the 2024 Arnold Classic below:
“My top three is going to be Hadi, Samson, and Chris’ guy [Rubiel Mosquera].”
Even though he has Choopan winning the show, Walker underlined that no one is ‘unbeatable’ and argued that Dauda had the potential to defeat ‘The Persian Wolf.’ According to Walker, Choopan hasn’t improved over the last year.
“I think it’s very possible [Samson Dauda can beat Hadi Choopan]. I don’t think anyone is unbeatable on any given day.”
“The thing with Hadi and I’m probably going to get attacked for this now. I feel like the past two years, Hadi has not progressed. I don’t feel like he improved much from last year.”
Walker feels Choopan’s progress has remained stagnant, whereas Dauda has continued to improve from show to show.
“From the back, he was I think even softer than he was the year before. I feel, in my opinion, I feel Samson’s conditioning, his is improving show to show. So whatever Milos has him doing I would obviously continue that and I think Sasmon would have a shot at winning.”
“If Hadi can come in with Hadi’s signature conditioning, then no, I think Hadi will continue to stay on top. But if he looks remotely the same as the Olympia and Samson has better conditioning than he did at the Olympia which he already did at the Prague show and gets better and better from here on out, then I think he will overtake Hadi.”
As for Rubiel ‘Neckzilla’ Mosquera, Walker was highly complimentary of the new contender and envisions him placing first to third, which would leave Andrew Jacked outside the top three.
“I can see him [Rubiel Mosquera] in first to third. It’s all going to be depending on how Chris handles him. The kid is new, the kid is freaky. He is younger than me for fuck’s sake.
And I know Chris is very smart with training, I know Chris is very smart with posing and when the kid finally starts to dial in that training, like with me, he’s going to change very fast and very quickly and I told Chris, all he needs is deep separation in those quads, improve his back a little bit, especially from the front, have that more lat illusion there,” said Nick Walker.
‘The Mutant’ advised Mosquera to stop training his neck.
“Stop training his neck, he doesn’t need it. Honestly, just keep improving the condition, the kid will be phenomenal. The kid is as freaky as it is. He doesn’t need any more freakiness per se. He just now needs to get better.”
Before calling it a day, Walker revealed his top three poses: his most muscular, side chest, and back double biceps.
“My most muscular, side chest, and back double biceps,” said Nick Walker. “Yeah actually [in that order]. I do think my most muscular is number one. I would pick back double and side chest.”
“I even think my side triceps pretty good too,” he added.
In addition to Walker, former Mr. Olympia Samir Bannout has provided insights into the second-largest contest of the year. He identified Samson Dauda as the most dangerous frontrunner but noted that Choopan poses a significant challenge, fueled by the chip on his shoulder after securing second place to Lunsford on the 2023 Olympia stage.
Meanwhile, bodybuilding veteran Shawn Ray has also gotten behind the potential of Samson Dauda. He believes Dauda will be an undeniable number-one contender to win the 2024 Mr. Olympia should he emerge victorious at the 2024 Arnold Classic and the AC UK weeks after.
The 2024 Arnold Classic is set to take place in Columbus, Ohio from March 1-3. Bodybuilding legend Arnold Schwarzenegger revealed that the pay-per-view will be free to stream for everyone, only adding to the festival’s excitement.