by Joe Pietaro | MuscleSportMag
One name that hasn’t been mentioned as a serious contender for the upcoming Arnold Classic has been Gustavo Badell. A good question is why not? The ‘Freakin’ Rican’ had a fairly successful 2008 in three top contests. He was the runner-up at the Ironman Pro Invitational, sixth in the last Arnold Classic and 10th at the Mr. Olympia.
That was Badell’s best year since 2005 when he won the Ironman and placed third at both the Arnold and Olympia. He also finished in the Top 3 at the 2004 O.
He may have missed his best chance during those two years. Even if he did, Badell came in to Las Vegas last September looking huge, but would have helped himself if his mid-section was a bit narrower and better defined.
“All I know is I did my job,” he said before the Olympia. “I tried to come in my best condition ever.”
Badell had good upper body definition and a wide back, but lost points with his obliques. He did not have that ‘V’ look to his body and with the right diet and timing can hone that to his advantage. At 5?8? and a contest weight of 245 pounds, Badell would be better off slimming down and not being so concerned about coming in bigger than the next guy.
With Badell skipping this year’s Ironman, it appears that he has concentrated on placing high at the Arnold. Silvio Samuel took the title a month ago in Los Angeles and finished three spots higher than Badell at the Olympia. From the outside it would appear that Badell had a better shot against the Ironman field. He must have had a reason for skipping a show that he has had past success at. With that in mind, figure on Badell coming in to Ohio ripped and ready to do some damage.
Maybe even enough for an upset win.