Jay Cutler Reclaims the Mr. Olympia Title, Branch Warren Runner-Up
by Joe Pietaro
Becoming the first to reclaim the Mr. Olympia title, Jay Cutler defeated what has been called the deepest line-up in the contest’s history. The Las Vegas resident was the clear-cut fan favorite and obviously impressed the judges just as much.
“Everyone wrote me off,” he said on stage right after the announcement. “It’s a huge achievement for me. At 36 there’s a lot of gas left in the tank for me.” Cutler speculated about winning a fourth Sandow, but followed that up by saying he wanted to enjoy this one first.
The defending champion, Dexter Jackson, fell to third place while Branch Warren, who appeared to be in fantastic condition at the pre-judging, finished as the runner-up, a huge accomplishment for him. 2009 Arnold Classic champion Kai Greene placed fourth, a bit of a surprise as he was said to be a sure-bet top three candidate. Phil Heath did not have nearly the same physique that he brought to the desert a year ago and fell from third to fifth. The 29-year-old nearly had to drop out of the contest due to a stomach illness that he suffered on Friday and lost a lot of traction during the pre-judging that he could not make up.
Although he had hoped for a better placing, Victor Martinez taking sixth should be viewed as a plus. The Dominican Dominator has had to come back from not only a serious knee injury but a family tragedy and it was quite an accomplishment for him just to be here, let alone make the top six.
Rounding out the top 10 were:
7th – Ronny Rockel – came in to the show better than he ever looked and could have easily slipped into the top six
8th – Toney Freeman – The X-Man went from fifth to eighth and at 43 does not have many more chances
9th – Hidetada Tamagashi – A great placing for the youngster from Japan. A rising star in this sport.