HARARE – Marondera bodybuilder Blessing Nyapimbi walked away with the inaugural Marume Classic gong after his triumph in the senior men’s category at the Zimbabwe College of Music auditorium on Saturday night.
It was an emotional night for Nyapimbi as the victory brought down tears in remembrance of his late wife, who died exactly a year ago which ruled him out of the 2016 Mr Ironman contest.
“It has been an emotional journey considering how much my wife meant to me and given the nature of our sport which is very demanding,” Nyapimbi said.
“I would have quit last year but the support and dedication my wife had towards my career kept me on my toes and this is my proudest moment and a befitting dedication to her.
“If it’s true that the departed see what happens here on earth, I’m sure she is happy wherever she is.”
Nyapimbi added: “It is now my wish to wrap it all up with the Mr Zimbabwe title; it’s not an easy feat to achieve but I will keep on training hard to make this dream a reality.
“It was a good show, very few athletes but no one can doubt the quality of the bodybuilders that took to the stage and we can only get better with such kind of contests.”
The inaugural contest is a brainchild of ex-bodybuilder Givemore Marume, who is a former Mr Ironman and Mr Zimbabwe champion.
Marume won the Mr Zimbabwe title four times (2001, 2002, 2003 and 2006) a record which he shares with the late George Takundwa.
The only bodybuilder with more Mr Zimbabwe titles is Innocent Choga, who took home the national title six times.
Saturday’s contest was well supported with Eugenia Chidhakwa representing the Sports ministry while the Sports and Recreation Commission had acting director-general Joseph Muchechetere and spokesperson Tirivashe Nheweyembwa in attendance.
South African hulk Earl Abrahams, who was the guest of honour, was the star-attraction of the night with his imposing frame.
Abrahams is an International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness South Africa (IFBB SA) professional bodybuilder.
The National Federation of Zimbabwe Bodybuilding and Fitness (NFZBBF) secretary-general Quite Shangai, who was the chief judge, said: “It was good
considering that the Classic is just being introduced.
“Furthermore support from SRC, ministry and past national champions and industry icons means the project is sustainable.”
Senior men bodybuilding – Blessing Nyapimbi, Junior men bodybuilding Nigel Simango, Women bikini fitness – Ashleigh Thoko Dube, Men’s fitness, Chamunorwa Marange, Men’s physique , Tinotenda Ryan Gumbo, Teens boys fitness – Abraham Uta