Friday, June 21, 2024

The ten Finest Bodybuilders of 2023


The 2023 bodybuilding season was stuffed with tight competitions and standout moments that gave followers loads to debate over the previous 12 months. We noticed long-running dynasties proceed on, others finish in heartbreaking trend, and new faces emerge as family names.

However amongst all of the world-class opponents who took the stage in 2023, we discovered 10 who stood out as the very best, in no explicit order. Have a look again on the accomplishments of those championship-caliber athletes.

The ten Finest Bodybuilders of 2023


Derek Lunsford

A victory on the Mr. Olympia competitors is all the time an enormous deal, however Derek Lunsford took issues a step additional by turning into the first-ever two-division winner. In 2021, Lunsford dethroned then-reigning Olympia 212 champ Shaun Clarida to win that title for the primary time. Then, this yr, he beat reigning Mr. Olympia Hadi Choopan so as to add a brand new bullet to his resume.

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And Lunsford didn’t simply beat Choopan, who appeared nearly as good as ever. He conquered a tricky discipline that additionally included Brandon Curry, Samson Dauda, and Andrew Jacked. With the 212 title and the Sandow on his mantle, Lunsford has solidified his place within the historical past books — and it appears like he’s simply getting began.


Chris Bumstead

In what could have been essentially the most predictable division winner on the lads’s facet, Chris Bumstead received his fifth Basic Physique Olympia title in November 2023. CBum is already the winningest athlete within the division’s historical past, and this fifth victory simply provides to his declare as one of many high bodybuilders of the previous decade.

What’s extra spectacular is that Bumstead fought off a fully stacked roster for this victory. The likes of Ramon Rocha Queiroz, Urs Kalecinski, and Breon Ansley had been nearly as good as ever, however they nonetheless couldn’t topple the champ.

[Related: Arnold Schwarzenegger vs. Chris Bumstead — Breaking Down a Fantasy Bodybuilding Matchup]

That stated, particular recognition must be given to Queiroz for his spectacular 2023. He received the Arnold Basic in March after which gave CBum an actual scare on the O. He pushed Bumstead tougher than another rival earlier than him and proved that he could possibly be the way forward for the division.


Cydney Gillon

The listing of bodybuilders who’ve received seven or extra Olympia titles is a brief one. For the lads, you’ve obtained Phil Heath and Arnold Schwarzenegger with seven Mr. O wins apiece, and Ronnie Coleman and Lee Haney tied for essentially the most at eight. On the ladies’s facet of the stage, there are solely three: 10-time Ms. Olympia Iris Kyle, eight-time Ms. Olympia Lenda Murray, and now seven-time Determine Olympia champion Cydney Gillon

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Gillon’s dominance of her division has established her as a legend in bodybuilding, and she or he solely furthered her legacy with yet one more win in 2023. It’s unknown how lengthy she is going to proceed to rule the Determine division, however primarily based on how she appeared on the Olympia Orlando, it seems that each different rival could also be preventing for second place going ahead.


Samson Dauda

Samson Dauda was close to the highest of the Males’s Open division all through a lot of 2023. First, he received the Arnold Basic in a shocker, beating out favorites like Nick Walker, Andrew Jacked, and Mamdouh “Huge Ramy” Elssbiay alongside the way in which.

Subsequent, he confirmed up on the 2023 Mr. Olympia and earned a top-three end, routinely qualifying him for the 2024 contest. He then received two different exhibits proper after that, the Romania Muscle Fest Professional and Prague Professional, which additionally stored different males from qualifying for the Olympia. 

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Dauda intends to defend his Arnold Basic title in 2024, that means he has a brief low season. And if he makes the required enhancements, there’s no purpose why he can’t problem Lunsford for the coveted Olympia crown in November 2024.


Andrew Jacked

Very like Dauda, Andrew Jacked additionally had a packed 2023 season. He began the yr by ending third on the 2023 Arnold Basic. He then received the 2023 Texas Professional, which certified him for the 2023 Mr Olympia contest. 

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He then confirmed up in Orlando and completed within the high 5 on the Olympia for the primary time, beating out Hunter Labrada and Michal “Krizo” Krizanek and placing him simply behind the 2019 Mr. O, Brandon Curry. Jacked has put the bodybuilding world on discover that he will probably be a risk to say the Sandow sooner or later.


Ashley Kaltwasser

Ashley Kaltwasser was already the all-time winningest competitor going into the 2023 season, however she added to that report by turning into the primary athlete to ever win 40 professional exhibits. Past that, she even went on to put within the high three on the 2023 Bikini Olympia, placing much more accolades on her stacked resume. 

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A decade after she received her first Olympia title, Kaltwasser remains to be thought of as a lot of a risk to the title as ever. She ended the 2023 season by notching a record-extending forty third profession win, and she or he seems to be on the highway to 50 victories in 2024.


Andrea Shaw

Andrea Shaw went into this yr trying to defend each her Rising Phoenix World Championship and Ms. Olympia titles. She had already received every present for the previous three years, and her objective was to snag a four-peat. And she or he did so in dominant trend.

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She started by efficiently defending her Rising Phoenix title in September. Lower than eight weeks later, she introduced the very best model of her physique up to now and left together with her fourth consecutive Olympia win. Angela Yeo completed second to Shaw in each contests, and she or he seems to be the most important risk to dethrone her in 2024. Nonetheless, it’s laborious to argue that Shaw received’t be the favourite going into any contest she enters at this level in her profession.


Ryan Terry

The UK’s Ryan Terry is among the veterans of the Males’s Physique division, however many followers and consultants assumed his window of alternative to win the Olympia had closed. However Terry by no means gave up, and because of this, he’s now part of bodybuilding immortality. 

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He began the yr by successful the 2023 New York Professional present, and he ended it by successful the Males’s Physique Olympia that had eluded him for thus lengthy. Within the course of, he beat three previous champions, together with defending winner Erin Banks, three-time champion Brandon Hendrickson, and four-time champion Jeremy Buendia. Will he have the ability to add to his legacy with a repeat in 2024? We’ll have to attend and see — however both approach, 2023 will probably be remembered because the yr Terry lastly broke by. 


Karol Milewski

When the 2023 Wheelchair Olympia contest started, virtually everybody anticipated five-time champion Harold “King Kong” Kelley to make it six wins in a row and stay the one champion within the division’s historical past. However he and everybody else in attendance had been shocked when the mud settled and Karol Milewski got here away along with his first Olympia win. 

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Primarily based on the scorecards from that contest, there was little question that Milewski was the judges’ favourite that day. This can be the beginning of a back-and-forth between each opponents, or this can be just the start of one other Olympia dynasty. Both approach, each Milewski and Kelley have certified for the 2024 Wheelchair Olympia already, and a rematch is all however inevitable.


Aimee Delgado

This yr wasn’t nearly established stars; loads of up-and-comers have additionally made names for themselves. One such competitor is Aimee Delgado from the Bikini division. Delgado positioned first in a whopping 5 professional exhibits in 2023, most notably the Pittsburgh Professional and New York Professional. She then went into the 2023 Bikini Olympia and left with a top-six end. 

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Delgado must win one other present to re-qualify for the 2024 Olympia, however she has proven the athletes and followers of her division that she is primed to grow to be a constant presence in what’s already one of many tightest divisions within the sport.

Wanting Forward

This yr was as thrilling as they arrive for bodybuilding, and there’s likelihood issues will solely get higher in 2024. We already know the 2024 Arnold Basic roster is stacked, however there are additionally ongoing storylines like whether or not Derek Lunsford can efficiently defend his Mr. Olympia title, Huge Ramy’s future plans, Ramon Rocha Queiroz’s rise, and Andrea Shaw’s ongoing dominance.

How completely different will this listing look subsequent yr? We don’t know — however we’re excited to observe all of it unfold.

Featured Picture: @dereklunsford_ on Instagram

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