by Christian Duque
The 2019 Arnold Classic Australia is a real gem of a contest. Promoter Tony Doherty is a legend in bodybuilding, having seen a great deal of growth and tons of new fans discovering the sport. This weekend’s event showcases a huge rivalry between William “The Conqueror” Bonac, in addition to Luke Sandoe and Josh Lenartowicz.
The one man noticeably absent from the event will be 2019 Arnold Classic champion Brandon Curry, who stunned the world just two weeks ago, defeating a sharp as ever, defending champion, William Bonac, in Columbus. I, personally, have Bonac for the win and said as much on this week’s edition of The Iron Duque Speaks, presented by IronMagLabs.com. I highly encourage you to check out the show, as it also features a ton of other great topics in the world of bodybuilding and fitness; however, much like I said from the beginning of this piece my goal here is to talk about this amazing event, how big bodybuilding in Australia is, and how I think the Arnold Classic Australia is serving as the beacon, as the shining example of all things that international shows can be. Now, more than ever, as promoters finally have the ability to build something like what we have in America, employing the NPC model, the sky’s truly the limit.
The Arnold Classic Australia is a huge hit, right off the bat, for one very noticeable point – it’s name. Absolutely anything tied to 7x Mr. Olympia, former Governor, and movie superstar Arnold Schwarzenegger, has to be of the highest quality. The pioneers of modern day bodybuilding were Joe and Ben Weider – that’s unquestioned. Another very key figure, who’s made it his life’s goal to growing bodybuilding, is our President, Mr. Jim Manion. Within this larger than life group of men, is of course Arnold.
Arnold has done a great deal, from traveling to America from Austria, defeating the great Sergio Oliva and leading the life of ten men. The fact he won 7 Olympias, appeared in countless movies, and held elected office, especially of the great state of California no less, speaks to his amazing resume. Arnold may not be the guy working the shows that bear his name, but I can assure you (if not totally guarantee you) that those who do carry out the operations, those oversee the media, the stage, the promotion, all pass the absolute highest scrutiny. Arnold has met with cabinet heads, law enforcement, and foreign dignitaries – he’s run the largest state (economically-speaking) of the United States. This is a man who prides himself on things being done to perfection, the Arnold Australia is as successful as California was, when Arnold was in command!
Let’s also not forget how Arnold became governor. He wasn’t elected after winning a major party’s nomination in a primary or caucus process. Their weren’t straw polls, debates, or a nice normal process.He won office through a recall. The governor at the time could have messed up boiling water. The economy was in shambles, Californians were miserable, and the whole state was all but collapsing. Not only did Arnold win the recall, up against everyTom, Dick, and Harry (including the late, great Gary Coleman), but Arnold did such a great job, he got re-elected!! He brings that same level of leadership to his contests and with a promoter like Tony Doherty, it’s no wonder the contest has grown into one of the best international contests in the world.
Given the namesake involved and given the fact the contest is put on by such a great promoter, only adds to the fact that Australia is really a bodybuilding country. The people love the sport, they buy tickets, magazines, and when bodybuilders come to town, it’s major news. This is, after all, the homeland of Lee Priest, a guy who despite not being blessed in the height department, was one of the best known and most feared giant killers of his day. Australia is also home to a great many current bodybuilders, eyeing this contest, with dreams of stepping foot on this amazing stage in the future. The really great news is, that maybe one day they will. Also, just one look at the depth of lineups, the judging panels, and the sponsors involved, and it’s abundantly clear that we’re dealing with a true, first class production.
In summation, this contest, like the many before and after it, will be hugely successful. As with 2019, it’s my prediction that William Bonac will walk away with the victory. He only narrowly lost to Brandon Curry in Columbus, and I simply can’t imagine him not walking away with the win in Melbourne. In addition to Bonac winning, bodybuilding will be winning as well, as Tony & Arnold hit another home run!!