Antiguan bodybuilders on the rise in Bermuda.
Bernard Percival Jr., in Classic Bodybuilding, and Kimberly Ephraim, in the Bikini Tall Class, both captured first place overall in their respective gender categories that the overall at the Darcy Beckles Bodybuilding and Physique competition at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre in Barbados, which took place over the weekend.
Devastation wrought by Hurricanes Irma and Maria and the earthquake in Mexico forced the cancellation of the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Bodybuilding Championships.
As a result, six of the nation’s athletes made the journey over the weekend and former Mr. Antigua Ollyn Martin placed 2nd in the Men’s Bodybuilding Invitational Open Class. Sher-Rhonda Braithwaite placed 4th in Body Fitness. While Elvis Bailey and Rodney George both secured a top 10 finish in the Men’s Bodybuilding Classic Open Class, as reported by AntiguaNewsRoom.
Last year in the same event, Ephraim placed a modest third. But Saturday night, she defeated Barbadian Dionne Clarke to claim coveted first place in the highly competitive tall class. The win catapulted her Ephraim into contention for the overall title with another Barbadian Shakira Doughlin, who achieved first place in the short class.
“I think the team performed exceptionally well,” said Ephraim, who also serves as the PRO for the Antigua and Barbuda Bodybuilding and Weightlifting Federation (ABBWF).
“We are hoping that these victories and placings that we were able to come home with for Antigua would serve as an inspiration for athletes currently in the sport, persons interested in the sports and for corporate sponsors to see that we are working and bringing home results.
“Our team went out, did well and stand our ground against established athletes.”
Dubbed as Antigua’s next possible professional – Rosian Warrington became the first, back in 2015- the 32-year-old Percival prevailed in a showdown against thickly-muscled Barbadians Hugo Greaves and Lamarr Coward. He proved victorious and was crowned men’s classic bodybuilding champion.
The official Bodybuilding calendar in Antigua and Barbuda is now officially concluded, but Ollyn Martin still plans to compete at the Stage of Champions show in Guyana on November 19th 2016 at New Era Academy Foundation.