The New York Pro, one of the top contests in bodybuilding, has seen breakout performances from some of the most accomplished bodybuilders of all time. Past champions include Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay, Phil Heath, Dexter Jackson, Kai Greene, and Juan Morel, among others. No one is guaranteed an Olympia win, of course, after taking the top spot that the NY Pro, but they are granted qualification to the big show and the spotlight.
This year, on May 15, 2021, it was Nick Walker who took the overall for the Men’s Open division. Nathan Epler won the 212 Division and Leah Dennie took first in Women’s Bodybuilding. Though the show has New York in the name, 2021 marks the second year the event took place in Tampa, FL due to the pandemic. Below is the full list of division winners and a recap of two fan-favorite divisions — Open and 212.
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2021 New York Pro — All Division Winners
All winners of these contests are now automatically qualified to compete in the Olympia this October.
- Men’s Open — Nick Walker
- 212 — Nathan Epler
- Classic Physique — Dani Younan
- Men’s Physique — Erin Banks
- Women’s Bodybuilding — Leah Dennie
- Women’s Physique — Alyssa Kiessling
- Figure — Maria Luisa Baeza Diaz
- Bikini — Robins Basualdo
- Wellness — Yarishna Ayala
2021 New York Pro Men’s Open Results
- First Place — Nick Walker
- Second Place — Justin Rodriguez
- Third Place — Hassan Mostafa
First Place — Nick Walker
“The Mutant” weighed around 250 pounds when he took the stage in Tampa. His upper back had improved since his last contest, which was the 2020 Chicago Pro where he placed fourth. His trademark legs were as large and ripped as ever as well. As a result of him hitting his peak, he takes the championship ring for winning as well as the automatic qualification for the Olympia.
Second Place — Justin Rodriguez
Coming off a victory in the 2021 Indy Pro a week prior to this contest, Rodriguez was hoping to win his second straight show of the season. He brought a similar package to the one he sported in Indianapolis, but Walker was not to be denied. Rodriguez, a New York native, has made it clear he wants this title. Expect him to go for it again in 2022.
Third Place — Hassan Mostafa
Mostafa was very lean and sported great symmetry, but Walker was outsized. When conditioning is the same, the bigger guy usually wins. Don’t be surprised if he shows up in another show, because he can very well take a win this season if he can improve upon his look here.
2021 New York Pro Men’s 212 Results
- First Place — Nathan Epler
- Second Place — John Jewett
- Third Place — Noel Adame
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First Place — Nathan Epler
Indiana native Nathan Epler wanted to win his pro debut in Indianapolis on May 8th, but Tonio Burton dominated the stage. Epler settled for second. Burton, however, was not at the New York Pro, and Epler improved on his look from seven days prior. As a result, he won the 212 contest here. He also joins Burton and the other qualified athletes in the Olympia 212 lineup. He will now look to improve on this look so he can take on reigning champion Shaun Clarida in Orlando.
Second Place — John Jewett
Jewett looked better in Tampa than he did in Indianapolis, but the judges preferred Epler’s package. He placed second in both prejudging and finals. This makes the second straight contest that Jewett placed behind Epler. Even though the man from Texas has placed as high as fourth at the Olympia, he has yet to officially qualify for the 2021 year’s contest. He has accumulated points in the Olympia scoring system to make it still if he can break into the top three.
Third Place — Noel Adame
Adame arguably looked the best he ever has, and he earned a bronze medal as a result. The former Mr. Mexico champion may have more opportunities to win a show this season. He will be looking to take advantage of that so he can qualify for the Olympia for the second time in his career. In 2020, he placed outside of the Top 15.
Featured Image: By Will Wittmann