Southern Indiana Native Takes Home Most Prestigious Award in Bodybuilding
One Southern Indiana native has just been crowned the 2023 Mr. Olympia, the most prestigious title in the sport of bodybuilding.
Mr. Olympia Fitness and Performance Weekend
November 2-5, 2023, the toughest competition in the world of bodybuilding, the Mr. Olympia Fitness and Performance Weekend, was held in Orlando, Florida. It was here that Indiana native, Derek Lunsford beat out 23 other competitors from around the globe to take home the top title of Mr. Olympia as well as People's Choice Champion.
An Indiana Boy
Lunsford was born in 1993 in Petersburg, Indiana. Measuring five feet, six inches tall, the bodybuilder weighs an impressive 225 pounds. Nearly a decade after making his competitive bodybuilding debut at a show in Indianapolis in 2015, Lunsford has earned himself a place in the sport's history books as the first competitor to win the Mr. Olympia competition in two divisions.
After competing in several International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness (IFBB) Pro events, including the Men's 212 division of the 2017 IFBB Pro where he took first place, and Mr. Olympia competitions from 2018 on, it was in 2021 that Lunsford won his first Mr. Olympia Title in the Men's 212 division. From here, the athlete moved into the Men's Open division, taking second place in 2022.
Two Time Champion and History Maker
2023 saw the return of Lunsford to the Men's Open class where he claimed the title of Mr. Olympia, making him the first bodybuilder to win the title in two different divisions in the history of the competition. Watch behind the scenes of Lunsford's journey over the course of the weekend and see him claim the title of Mr. Olympia. In addition to the prestigious title, Lunsford walked away with a cash prize of $400,000.
A Winning Legacy
2023 marks the 59th year of the bodybuilding competition that got its start in 1965 in New York. Two men hold the number one position for most title wins at the event with eight a piece - Ronnie Coleman and Lee Haney. Former California Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger holds seven Mr. Olympia Championship titles.
LOOK: 50 images of winning moments from sports history
Gallery Credit: Peter Richman