The 1991 NPC Nationals – Bodybuilding’s greatest amateur event.
Evolutionofbodybuilding.net loves to look back at bodybuilding’s greatest competitions. One competition stands out from the rest… and it is not a pro event.
What could possibly be better than the Mr. Olympia, Arnold Classic or event the New York Pro?
The 1991 NPC Nationals stands out as the greatest amateur event in the history of the sport.
Not only does this site believe that the 1991 NPC Nationals is the greatest amateur event ever, but we think it is one of the greatest bodybuilding events ever.
The 1991 NPC Nationals was the perfect storm of bodybuilding. The heavyweight division had a lineup made up of athletes, that would go on to totally dominate the sport of bodybuilding for over a decade.
Kevin Levrone would end up winning the heavyweight division and go on to win the overall title to earn the prestigious pro card.
This contest was special as it not only launched the fantastic career of Levrone, but it would also launch the careers of some of the greatest bodybuilders in the history of the sport.
Just to name a few: Kevin Levrone, Flex Wheeler, Paul Demayo, Ronnie Coleman, Matt Mendenhall, Bob Cicherillo and Chris Cormier. All these legendary athletes competed in the heavyweight division on that spectacular day.
These bodybuilders would go on to make bodybuilding in the 1990’s one of the greatest era’s ever in the sport.
They would go on to battle each other on stage and become great friends off stage.
Bodybuilding fans would be treated to some of the greatest pro shows ever.
Kevin Levrone would go on to win over 20 pro shows. He would win the Arnold Classic on two occasions and also place second at the Olympia on four occasions. Many believe Kevin should have won the Mr Olympia during his career .
After retiring from the sport of bodybuilding, Kevin went on to give back to the sport by doing seminars and as well launching a very successful supplement brand.
Ken (Flex) Wheeler is another athlete that would have a legendary career. Even though he has never won the Mr. Olympia, many fellow competitors and fans still say he is the greatest ever in the history of the sport.
Wheeler would win the Arnold Classic on four occasions and place second at the Mr. Olympia three times.
Paul Demayo would earn the nickname ‘Quadzilla’ due to his incredible leg development. Paul unfortunately did not have a long career in the sport, but he was a fan favorite. He passed away in 2005 at the age of 35.
Ronnie Coleman needs no introduction. Ronnie truly changed the sport of bodybuilding.
From being a bodybuilder that regularly placed at the back of the pack, he turned his career around to end up winning the Mr. Olympia title eight consecutive times.
Coleman would go on to win 26 pro shows in his bodybuilding career.
Ronnie did not turn his career around alone, it is a known fact that Kevin Levrone and Flex Wheeler had a major part in his success. Levrone and Wheeler never expected that their advice would turn Coleman into an unbeatable machine.
Matt Mendenhall was a bodybuilder who unfortunately never made it to the pro ranks. The 1991 NPC Nationals would be his final competition.
Matt had the genetics to dominate the sport, but for some reason he could not jump the final hurdle. Even 8X Mr. Olympia Lee Haney is on record saying that Matt had one the greatest physiques in the history of the sport.
Bob Cicherillo is the perfect example of somebody that does not give up. It took Bob 13 years to earn his pro card. Back then, very few pro cards were awarded.
Bob would continue to compete as a pro for six years before he retired. Cicherillo would go on to become the ‘Voice of Bodybuilding’ and as well promote his own events.
Bob is also the current Athletes Representative for the Pro League.
Chris Cormier is another bodybuilder that would become one of the greatest ever. Unfortuantley, Chris placed second at the Arnold Classic six consecutive times.
But, when it came to the Ironman Pro, Cormier was the king as he won this event four times.
Chris would go on to win 11 pro shows before retiring. Chris would go on to become one of the best trainers in the industry.
1991 NPC Nationals – Heavyweight Division
1 Kevin Levrone
2 Ken Wheeler
3 Paul Demayo
4 Ronnie Coleman
5 Matt Mendenhall
6 Bob Cicherillo
7 Chris Cormier
Full results: Click HERE