2020 and 2021 Mr. Olympia winner Mamdouh “Big Ramy” Elssbiay has officially ruled himself out of the 2023 Mr. Olympia contest, scheduled to take place on the weekend of Nov. 2-5, 2023 in Orlando, FL. On Sep. 23, 2023, Elssbiay made his intentions known during a guest interview on Bob Cicherillo’s “Voice of Bodybuilding” series.
[Related: The Best Post-Workout Supplements in 2023, Ranked]
In the interview, Elssbiay told Cicherillo he was pulling out of the ’23 Olympia due to a number of existing injuries that have affected his standing in the Men’s Open division of competitive bodybuilding:
“I think the better choice is right now, we need to get a break. The Olympia is here, and we’re working to get better and better for the next show,” Elssbiay said.
Elssbiay went on to say that he was unsure if he would compete in the 2024 Arnold Classic or wait until the following Mr. Olympia contest. As a past Mr. Olympia winner, he is eligible to enter any Men’s Open contest he wants for life. He would not have to qualify for the Mr. Olympia event if he chose to compete.
Elssbiay had competed as a pro since making his debut at the 2013 New York Pro, which he won. He won the Mr. Olympia title for the first time in 2020 in Orlando, FL by overtaking then-champion Brandon Curry. Elssbiay was the first non-American champion of the contest since Dorian Yates held the title in 1997. Elssbiay again held off Curry and other contenders to repeat as champion in 2021.
Elssbiay lost the title at the 2022 Mr. Olympia contest in Las Vegas, NV, where he finished in fifth place. Hadi Choopan won his first Sandow Trophy at that contest. Elssbiay’s last show was the 2023 Arnold Classic in March in Columbus, OH, where he finished in fourth place.
With Elssbiay out of the Olympia, that leaves an opening in the top five favorites that could be filled by names such as Samson Dauda, Andrew Jacked, Hunter Labrada, or someone else. The top four from the 2022 contest — Curry, Choopan, Derek Lunsford, and Nick Walker, — are all in the lineup as well as Dauda, who finished the 2022 Olympia in sixth place.
Elssbiay is the second bodybuilder to withdraw from the Mr. Olympia in the last month. 2023 Toronto Pro Supershow winner Iain Valliere had announced his retirement from competition on Sept. 7, 2023.
More Bodybuilding Content
- Regan Grimes’ Full Day Of Eating Before The 2023 Flex Weekend Pro
- How Chris Bumstead Is Prioritizing His Hamstrings On Leg Day During 2023 Mr. Olympia Prep
- 6-Time Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates’ Secret For Better Biceps Curls
Featured Image: @big_ramy on Instagram