This weekend the IFBB and NPC heads to Omaha, Nebraska and the competition will be just as hot as the temperatures outside. Ten Figure pros are slated to compete in this inaugural event. While it may not be the deepest line-up it will be a competitive one. Someone will leave the Big O with their first pro victory.
The HARDBODY 411:
1. Meredith Berthelson - Meredith was 12th a few weeks ago at the Cal Pro but should fair a little better at this show. She looks good from the front however when she turns around is when her weaknesses are exposed. She’ll need to bring a tighter backside than the Cal to crack a top five spot here. Some of it comes from posing a bit better from the rear as well.
2. Rachel Cammon - It’s been awhile since we last saw this Denver Nugget on stage. Rachel turned pro early in her competitive career at the 2008 NPC USAs. The USAs was her third show ever and won in her first national appearance. She quickly found out that the pros were a bit more challenging. She has yet to crack the top five but this could be her best chance to do so. Her challenge is being balanced on the upper body to lower and not looking too stringy and vascular. If she comes in full and her lower body is tight she’ll move into the mix.
3. Andrea Cantone - Andrea could be the darkhorse to shake things up at this show. She has a pair of sixth place finishes as a pro. She achieved IFBB Pro status at last year’s NPC Nationals and will look to move into the top five here. I look for her to be compared for the top spots here.
4. Jessica Farrelly - The Arizona cutie is coming off a 9th place finish at the Toronto Pro, her IFBB Pro debut. She wasn’t quite tight enough but showed tremendous potential. Jessica has a young, healthy and youthful look with great shape. If she is a bit tighter with her conditioning she’ll be a contender here. Regardless of where she finishes at this show, keep your eye on her in the years ahead.
5. Candice Lewis - Candice is also making the trip from Arizona and gunning for her first win. She took the NPC Jr. Nationals stage by storm just under a year ago, where she won the overall. Candice has incredible shape and a super tiny waist. Her biggest challenge to date has been keeping her legs down in comparison with her upper body. If she brought her legs down just a bit, look for her to be compared for the win. I see her being in the mix for the title and her first win.
6. Mona Muresan - Mona will be competing in her third show in a row and continues to move up in her placings. She was 10th in New York and 6th last weekend at the Toronto Pro. Mona has yet to crack the top five in her pro career and this could be her best shot to do so. She’ll have a tough time cracking the top three here but don’t be shocked if she’s in the top five.
7. Anissa Payne - This will be Anissa’s third pro show since turning entering the pro league. She continues to improve since her 2011 Team Universe win. Anissa’s biggest challenge is coming in tight enough from the backside. If she can do that she’ll move up in the placings.
8. Eleni Plakitsi - Elani will look to improve upon her New York Pro Figure finish. I like her look and should could fair well here. She carries more muscle than some of the others in this line up which could hurt her but we’ll have to see when they are compared. She’s a bit of a bubble girl in this line up and which side will she finish – top five or bottom of the pack? We’ll find out tomorrow.
9. Kim Sheppard - Kim has a great physique and should fair well at this show. She continues to improve as a pro and look for this flight attendant to land in the top five. Look for her to be in the top call-out and compared for the win. She’s one of the few women who seems to get better with each show, let’s see if it holds true this weekend.
10. Alea Suarez - Alea is the only woman in this lineup to compete at the Olympia and she’s looking to return to the big stage with a win here. Alea’s highest finish was 3rd at the 2011 Phoenix Pro. The physique she brings to the stage now looks nothing like the one we saw when she was in the Bikini division. Look for Alea to be in the top three and compared for the win.
Prejudging starts at 9am and the finals begin at 6pm. Visit NPCmidwest.com for more info on the show and follow the action live on twitter with the hashtag #OMAHAPRO.