1997 WABBA Bodybuilding Championships: Prejudging Part 1B
1997 WABBA World Championships – Castres, France
We were really lucky to get a brief report on this contest from Mike Liptrot who competed in the Junior Class: This is what he said:
There were four male height categories, juniors and seniors plus pairs; there was no Novice Class.
At the banquet at the end of the show, there was a guy up on stage who incorporated body popping into his routine and was asked to do some more. England’s Simon Robinson then went up and absolutely brought the house down with his break dancing, which was unforgettable!
This could definitely have been his last show before his tragic road accident where he lost his leg around six months later. Simon Robinson was in the medium class and had just won his second overall Wabba Britain title prior to the show. He had an amazing taper. Simon, like the champion that he was, came back and guest posed at an IFBB English Grand Prix some years later, and then guest posed at the 2004 Mr. Olympia. (We at GMV were shooting the Pump Room of that 2004 Olympia, and when Simon came back stage, Arnold greeted him and shook his hand. He was also presented with an Olympia participants medal by Joe Weider. Quite an honour.)
Other GB competitors at the 1997 WABBA Worlds were Paul Sutton (Short Class) who went on to win a number of NABBA Universe titles over the years. Brian Connolly also competed – a champion Masters competitor who trained at Kerry Kayes’s gym in Denton.
Others on our team were Paul Shardlow in the Tall Class, and a guy from Wales who’s name escapes me who placed 2nd possibly, great Hamstrings! Alain Petriz from France came 5th in the Seniors Class.
The amazing Serge Nubret guest posed, and he was still huge with that top level polished physique that was his trademark.
Regarding the women there were the usual classes. Two of the women we recognised were Marina Gusmini from Italy and Fabiana Frank from Argentina.