Monday, 22 May 2017

Never Better: Sarah Hayes - Tampa 2012

The pro Female Bodybuilding contest season is almost upon us. At the end of this week, our first champion of the year will be crowned in Toronto. Personally, I've been loving the Physique shows so far this year, but even so, the thought of the REALLY big girls joining the 2017 IFBB Pro League party at last is making me salivate ever so slightly.

We thought we might take a week to look back at some of the highlights from the (fairly) recent past - the last five or six years or so - and pick moments when some of our favourite FBBs were at their absolute peak. With one notable exception, there's no hope of seeing any of them back this season - either they don't compete at all or don't compete in Female Bodybuilding any longer. These shows were it. Their best ever.

Whether they would agree or not is besides the point. These are performances that have entered the female muscle lovin' brotherhood's consciousness, or at least that's what my research suggests. I'm listing all the women at the bottom of today's post. Can you guess which show we've selected for each? I'm curious to see if I've got it right.

Winner, 2012 Pro Bodybuilding Weekly IFBB Tampa Pro
Sarah: A whole $4,000 dollars richer than she had been that morning...

Not exactly going out on a limb with this one. The excitement surrounding the magnificent Ms Hayes among female muscle heads had, by the time she competed in Tampa in 2012, been growing exponentially since around her 4th place at the 2009 NPC Nationals, and by the time she'd won her pro card at the NPC USAs the following year, those who hadn't already succumbed to her obvious charms were few and far between. Can she get any more sexy? wondered one forum poster in late 2011.

A resounding "Yes" turned out to be the answer. Remember these pictures? They are from the months before the 2012 Tampa show. She's really packing some MEAT! noted one fan, adding, Damn, this girl is making me crrrrrrrazy! and thus, whether advertently or inadvertently, representing the feelings of many of us at the time.

In my opinion, said one fan after the event, she was in the greatest shape of her life. And she needed to be. The 2012 Tampa show had the kind of line-up that we can only dream of these days. Sheila Bleck, Janeen Lankowski, Kim Perez, Nancy Lewis, Tazzie Colomb... 27 - TWENTY-SEVEN! - big and classy women competed in Female Bodybuilding that day. Sarah outmuscled and outclassed them all.

Her pro career hadn't been all that before this particular show - a couple of 13ths and one top 6 finish - and she only competed again once, at the Ms Olympia the same year. Just as big but only good enough for 10th, in the opinion of the judges. And that was Sarah. Gone, but absolutely not forgotten, the Muscle Angels backstage footage of her pumping up before she won her one and only pro title still has the power to make me gasp. And I've watched it many many times. Often on repeat. Often in slow motion.

OK, so that's Sarah's moment. This week will feature Skadi Frei, Gillian Kovack, Katka Kyptova, Rene Marven, Simone Oliveira, and last but not least, Aleesha Young. So, what do you think was their finest on stage moment? If you can't remember the year and place then perhaps you can remember the posing suit.

Let's see if we're on the same female muscle lovin' wavelength.

See all 40 pages of Sarah from the show on RxMuscle here.


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