by: John Tuman and Allan Donnelly
Dexter Jackson notches win No. 3 of 2008
March 15, 2008
2008 is turning out to be the year of The Blade. Next stop, Las Vegas. Dexter Jackson continued his recent string of success by winning the New Zealand Pro on Saturday, his third win of the 2008 season and his third in the last three weeks. Jackson started his run by winning the Arnold Classic on March 1, then won the Australian Pro Grand Prix last weekend.
Melvin Anthony finished as the runner-up to Jackson for the second week in a row, while Toney Freeman took advantage of Moe Elmoussawi’s absence to place third. Sergey Shelestov and Troy Alves rounded out the top five, with Shelestov placing fourth and earning an Olympia qualification in the process. Elmoussawi finished third in Australia last week. Since he was a co-promoter in New Zealand, Elmossawi didn’t compete.
Special thanks go out to IFBB International Head Judge John Tuman and his wife Elissa for keeping us updated with commentary and pictures throughout these past two contests. Stay tuned to flexonline.com for loads more pictures to come from the New Zealand Pro.
Below is John’s exclusive analysis of the top five in New Zealand:
First and foremost, I would like to thank Mr. Jim Manion, President of the IFBB Pro Division, for making all of this possible. Next, I want to commend Moe El Moussawi (New Zealand) and Toney Doherty (Australia) and the IFBB Pro Division for bringing the IFBB athletes into this area of our world. There are great bodybuilding fans here and they are starving for the stars of the IFBB to compete in front of them. Hopefully next year there will be more IFBB Pro shows in this area of the world.
As far as the athletes, all of the IFBB Pro athletes who competed in the past two weeks have been great ambassadors for our sport and our organization. All of them have done numerous interviews with newspapers and sports channels for local and national cable television stations promoting the IFBB Pro Division and the sport ofr bodybuilding. Some of the se athletes have been dieting since the Olympia and have been in competition condition for the past month. Yet they still found time and energy to meet the fans and press to spread the word of bodybuilding across the world.
ANALYSIS OF THE TOP 6 ATHLETES IN THE NEW ZEALAND PRO SHOW:
SIXTH PLACE: RONNY ROCKEL, GERMANY
Much better conditioning than at the Arnold Classic and Australia. Still needs more separation and definition from the back. Ronny is a great athlete and champion. He has lots of muscularity and I think if he would forgo just a little bit of size for conditioning, he will surely get back to the Championship Circle and qualify for the Olympia.
FIFTH PLACE: TROY ALVES, USA
Troy has been so many times so close in the past month. He is a true warrior. He has battled illness and being so close to qualifying for the Olympia, and continues to fight. He has been a great ambassador for our sport with the fans and press. His conditioning continues to improve. I hope that Troy is able to continue on this path and be on the Olympia stage in September. He is an exceptional athlete, the fans adore him and no doubt he will pursue the Olympia stage.
FOURTH PLACE: SERGEI SHELESTOV, RUSSIA
After having a nightmarish flight of over 40 hours from Russia to Melbourne, Australia, Sergey was extremely competitive but holding some water. He was able to come in a lot tighter one week later in New Zealand. With great shape and conditioning, he was able to qualify for the Olympia.
THIRD PLACE: TONEY FREEMAN, USA
What can I say about Toney Freeman? He has been competing for the past 30 days and always has been in the mix for the last four shows. He also has been one of Australia and New Zealand fan’s favorites, and he took time out of his training daily to speak to fans and the press. With his shape and size, I believe Toney will be a very strong force to be reckoned with at the 2008 Olympia.
SECOND PLACE:MELVIN ANTHONY, USA
A great athlete and a true fan favorite. He is a great ambassador for our sport. As we all know, Melvin provides a whallop at the night show with a routine that is flawless, bringing the house down. In the beginning of the prejudging, he at first appeared not at his best. However, as he continued to pose, he became sharper and more separated.
FIRST PLACE: THE BLADE, DEXTER JACKSON, USA
During his tour, Dexter showed a level of discipline and dedication as well as ambassadorship which I would like all IFBB athletes to take note of. For an athlete to keep this type of conditioning for three weeks straight shows real dedication and mental focus that makes a World Champion. The pictures speak for themselves from the Arnold to Australia to New Zealand – Dexter has brought his “A” Game to every show! Truly one to watch for the Olympia!