The Arnold Classic in Brazil will be the first Arnold Classic where competitors can earn IFBB Elite Pro Cards.
The IFBB Elite Pro Qualifier will be held on the 20th and 22nd of April 2018 in São Paulo, one of the world’s most populous cities, as part of the sixth edition of the Arnold Sports Festival in South America. The show is open to competitors worldwide from all the IFBB Amateur International-affiliated federations.
The Arnold Classic shows have been divided amongst the two federations that recently split – the Jim Manion-led IFBB Pro League/National Physique Committee (NPC) and the IFBB Amateur International which is headed by Rafael Santonja. The latter created their own professional organisation, the IFBB Elite Pro League.
The Arnold Classic shows in the USA (1-4 March 2018) and Australia (16-18 March 2018) are affiliated with the IFBB Pro League and the NPC while the festivals in South America, South Africa (18-20 May 2018) and Europe (21-23 September 2018) are affiliated with the IFBB Elite Pro League and the IFBB Amateur International.
The American-based NPC is still the governing body of amateur bodybuilding and physique competitions in the United States where IFBB Pro Cards can be earned. Some NPC shows have already been added to the international circuit for 2018 where the winners of each category can walk out with an IFBB Pro Card.
The top six athletes in each category at the Arnold Classic South America in April will be awarded with trophies and medals. IFBB Elite Pro Cards will be awarded to the top three Overall winners in the following categories:
- Men’s Physique
- Muscular Men’s Physique
- Classic Bodybuilding
- Women’s Body Fitness
- Women’s Bikini Fitness
- Women’s Physique
- Women’s Wellness Fitness
The IFBB Elite Pro Card was specifically created after the break within the ranks of the IFBB.
In 2017 the Arnold Classic South America was a scene of jubilation for South African bodybuilding fans when IFBB Pro Earl ‘The Beast’ Abrahams flexed his way to 6th position.