The 35th Arnold Sports Festival, scheduled between 2-5 March in Columbus, OH, was the show’s biggest and most exciting edition, and Ramon Rocha Queiroz emerged victorious as the fifth Arnold Classic Physique champ when the dust settled.
The Classic Physique division at the 2023 Arnold Classic was a much-awaited contest. With the reigning champion Terrence Ruffin not competing at the 2023 AC, the fans were expecting a hard fight from the contestants, and a hard fight it was!
The seven Arnold Classic Physique contestants went all guns blazing as soon as they stepped on stage, trying to set themselves apart from their competition. None, however, could hold back the Brazilian bodybuilder.
Arnold Classic Physique is a special contestant. The victor of the second-biggest bodybuilding competition gets a $60,000 winner’s cheque, which is 20 percent more than the $50,000 prize money presented to the Classic Physique Olympia champ.
With Ruffin not competing and two-time Classic Physique Olympia and 2018 AC champ Breon Ansley retiring from the division, the Arnold Classic Physique stage was a land of opportunities for the division’s rising starts. Although the 2020 Arnold Classic Physique champ Alex Cambronero was on the roster and showed up in incredible condition, it wasn’t enough to hold off Ramon.
Ramon Rocha and Urs Kalecinski were the favorites going into the show after earning the silver and the bronze medal at the 2022 Classic Physique Olympia. Ramon’s and Kalecinski’s performance at the 2022 Mr. O was a repeat from the 2022 Arnold Classic.
The rest of the lineup was no match for Ramon Dino, who showed up in top shape to bag his maiden Arnold Classic Physique title in Columbus, OH.
Arnold Classic Physique competitors opened the floodgates from the moment they stepped on the stage.
Although the 2023 Arnold Classic Physique lineup wasn’t too deep, each contestant brought their best package to the stage. Ramon, Kalceinski, Cambronero, and Mike Sommerfeld separated themselves from the pack in the pre-judging round. These four bodybuilders made the first callout, making them the frontrunners to win the Arnold Classic Physique trophy and the winner’s cheque.
The evening schedule of the Classic Physique division was more exciting than the morning half. Each contestant got in better shape when they showed up for the finals, making the contest tighter.
Courage Opara had some of the biggest quads on the Classic Physique stage. He ended up with a fifth place at the 2023 AC.
Mike “The Bad Ass” Sommerfeld had a great physique. However, his upper body lacked definition compared to his lower body. Sommerfeld gained ground on his competing with his flawless posing routine. He had to settle for fourth place.
Cambronero had an incredibly defined physique and a tiny waist. He was one of the most proportionate physiques on the stage and had mind-boggling lines. The 2020 AC Classic Physique champ had the most defined back in the lineup. His X-frame made him stand out from the pack. He was fuller at the finals than the prejudging while holding onto his conditioning. It helped him lock in a third-place finish, a big improvement from his ninth-place finish at the 2022 Olympia.
Kalecinski has one of the best V-taper in the business. His glutes and hamstring tie-in were one of the best on the stage. Experts believe his overall shape is better than Ramon’s, but he still needs time to bring up his physique. He stepped it up in the posing round with his breaking dancing. He had to accept a silver medal at the 2023 AC. Meanwhile, his posing skills earned him the best poser award, making him $10,000 richer.
Ramon and Kalecinski went head-to-head in the final confirmation round, and the judges made them work through different poses multiple times, getting the fans their money’s worth.
Ramon Rocha had the best conditioning of the pack. He was diced to the bone, instantly putting him in the driver’s seat. The crowd erupts every time the Brazilian bodybuilder takes the stage. Ramon showed up with his best package at the 2023 Arnold Classic. His conditioning improved from the 2022 Arnold Classic, and his lower body conditioning was second to none.
Ramon Dino pulled down the curtains on his competition with his signature size, conditioning, and balance. His performance at the 2023 Arnold Classic makes him the biggest threat to “CBum’s” Olympia throne at the 2023 Olympia, scheduled for Nov. 2-5 in Orlando, FL.
2023 Arnold Classic Day One Results
Catch full coverage of the 2023 Arnold Classic, including pre-judging, event recaps, analysis, and final and full results at our Arnold Classic coverage hub: FitnessVolt.com/arnold-classic
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