C. Moore should have read the fine print.
Contest reports were not part of my 28-day plan, but turns out I am contractually obliged to give my learned opinion on two of the shows of the season, and possibly more, which can be added "at the discretion of the editorial team", or so it says.
So, Birmingham. Saturday 28th October.
C. Moore was nowhere near it. Master of disguise though I am, NABBA's not a federation I wish to cross again, but help was at hand in the form of a live feed courtesy of NAPA. And 'twas very much a marathon not a sprint. Hours and hours of action - C. Moore had to stay up way past his bedtime, although sadly the vast majority of classes were male-based. Nevertheless, these days there are not two but three female classes - Athletic, Toned and Trained Figure - the Universe having given up on the "Physique" class seven years ago now (though you can still see really big girls in thongs at the NABBA Worlds). Plus there is a "Pro Figure" class as well, where champions past and other more notable names line up. This relatively new development within the original amateur federation has arguably led to a thinning out of quality in the amateur class, but on the flip side of that it has also allowed newer stars, younger women, to emerge.
Anyway, judging was early doors - the women were on from 10.00am till about 11.15am in the order of Toned, then Athletic, then Trained. I thought watching the Toned and Athletic back to back would give me some handle on the distinction between the two, but in fact the opposite was true. Seems to be a fair bit of switching between the two classes by the competitors as well, and this being NABBA, often women who turn up expecting to compete in one class are ordered to compete in another, blurring the lines even more. Still, there were a lot of very sexy bums in very tiny thongs on show. C. Moore found it more than a little difficult to pace himself.
C. Moore had had himself a good old nap after lunch, before the "Show" portion of the contest - routines, awards, pictures etc. - started up at 6.30pm. This time the Trained ladies were up first, then some men before the Athletic ladies took to the stage. Then were two more lots of men before the Toned ladies, with Pro Figure much later, the penultimate class on the bill. I liked the breaks between the ladies' classes - the chances to refuel were very welcome as the day wore on. The many bodacious bums, the vast majority in NABBA-style thongs, proved - as is usually the case - somewhat draining.
And so, to my picks of the show.
Winner: Lee Tae Hee (South Korea)
C. Moore's Best of the Rest: Samantha Horne (UK)
Top bum for me. Check out 0.20 and 0.40 for why, and abs rolling is never a bad thing. She came to the show as the reigning NABBA England champion, having previously competed at first in Miami Pro and Ms Galaxy contests, and also this year in the PCA. Sam (as she likes to be called) started weight training at the age of 15 after being bullied at school. Would like to see what those tossers look like now and make collages of their (no doubt) disgustingly fatty bods compared to Sam's sleek, muscular sex appeal.
She should have had "How Do You Like Me Now?" for her routine.
Winner: Natasha Novak (UK)
C. Moore's Best of the Rest: Jo Eun Na (South Korea)
Not an easy pick this one - there was more glootastic talent in this class than I remember from previous shows. Brits Charley Alexander and Stephanie Smith got C. Moore's joy trumpet standing very much to attention, and not only them. But Jo Eun Na not only gave the audience a treat with her bottom-heavy muscular Asian body, but also delivered probably the most memorable routine in the whole show.
Altogether now... HEEEEEEEEEEEEY SEXY LADY!
Winner: Gemma Lancaster (UK)
Aka "The She Beast". Nice!
In 2017 Gemma has been crowned Ms NABBA England, Ms NABBA Universe - the second consecutive year a Brit has won - and, as a result of her win, she got to compete with the Pros. What an emotional and overwhelming day! she said afterwards.
C. Moore's Best of the Rest: Lydia Gerrard (UK)
By her own admission, Lydia needs to work on the "noodle arms" (her words, just to be clear). Fantastic glooteal definition though, and I think you will agree that her routine showed off her strengths very nicely and bagged her 3rd place. Lydia also seems to be the kind of woman you could have a lot of fun in a hotel with. Or anywhere really.
MISS FIGURE PRO DIVISION
Winner: Flora Conte (Italy)
With perennial NABBA Pro winner Daria Diossi sitting this one out, there was little real competition for the grande dame of NABBA Trained Figure. A two-time winner of the amateur version of the Ms Universe title (2010 and 2013), Flora has also been runner-up on more than one occasion. This is her first NABBA pro title of any sort.
C. Moore's Best of the Rest: Carol Bittencourt (Brazil)
With apologies to Lindsey Angel, whose bum work was exemplary, C. Moore has to go with the tanned, rippling Brazilian for the climax to his reluctant contest report.
Review all the routines at your leisure on the NABBA YouTube channel.