Bodybuilding fans and experts have become familiar with a lot of the athletes that are considered among the top of the sport. Names like Heath, Curry, Jackson, Winklaar, and Bonac come to mind when you think of the elite in the IFBB Pro League.
A more interesting conversation being had as the New Year approaches are which men will be among those that take “the next step” and see their stock rise onstage. Several names can be brought up in consideration for being recognized as the future of the sport. Some names will already be well-known for their online presence but which guys will validate that chatter onstage? Here are five competitors you should keep your eye on in 2020.
If you’re looking for an example of how to maximize the benefits of videos and social media, Regan Grimes would serve as a great one. That said, don’t be fooled into thinking that is his only talent. He has a physique that has placed him in the Top 3 of several Open shows as well as an appearance at the Classic Physique Olympia in 2018. 2020 will be Grimes’ fourth year as a professional and it could very well be one that sees him achieve multiple victories.
Labrada is not only the son of bodybuilding legend Lee Labrada, he is also the 2018 NPC Nationals Champion. Considered a bigger version of his father with similar lines, Labrada took 2019 to make improvements before making his pro debut. The second generation bodybuilder will compete in his first pro show at the New York Pro in May. Another second generation bodybuilder debuted at that contest and won it in 2017: Sergio Oliva Jr.
Sergio Oliva Jr.
Speaking of Oliva Jr., he has victories and has been on the Olympia stage but the Chicago native has a lot of pressure on him due to the being the son of a former Mr. Olympia. Some of that pressure is from others and some self-imposed but regardless, he will be looking to make a big next step when he steps onstage at the 2020 Arnold Classic. If he takes the second biggest title in bodybuilding, he will become a force to be reckoned with at the Olympia.
The former British champion is another YouTube and social media sensation. His posts of lifting 200 pound dumbbells has conjured up the name Ronnie Coleman on multiple occasions. Although he is one of the strongest bodybuilders in the game, he has yet to earn that first pro victory. The closest he had come is a second place finish to Dexter Jackson in Tampa earlier this year. No word on which show Sandoe will enter yet but 2020 could be his breakthrough year onstage.
Valliere is another man who has yet to see professional victory but been right on the cusp. He placed in the Top 4 of three contests in 2019 highlighted by a second place finish in Toronto. If he can master his conditioning and timing of when he peaks, he will be the last man standing on at least one show next year.
Featured Image: Instagram/ifbbiain