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At the upcoming Mr. Olympia, fans in attendance will have the chance to vote and influence the results.
At the pre-judging on Friday, Sept. 14, and at the following day’s finals, those at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas will be given access, via their mobile devices, to enable them to vote on the outcome of the contest. Their votes will count toward the official decision. Collectively the fans will be included as an additional judge on the voting panel. If they choose a different winner than the other judges, that competitor will be awarded the honor of becoming the inaugural People’s Champion. (To get your tickets and become part of Olympia history, go to mrolympia.com.)
Throughout the years, certain competitors, for various reasons, have held the mantle of the People’s Champion long before it became an official title. Victor Martinez is one of the outstanding competitors who has unofficially been given the People’s Champ accolade by the masses.
At the 2007 Mr. Olympia, Jay Cutler was defending his crown for the first time and came up against Victor Martinez, who was in his best shape ever. As a consequence, a lot of fans saw Martinez as the 2007 champ, and they greeted his eventual runner-up spot with incredulity. Against that scenario, Martinez became the People’s Champion, and his supporters looked forward to 2008 for him to reverse the decision. Unfortunately, in January 2008, Victor slipped in the street and ruptured the patellar tendon in his left knee. He returned to competition in 2009 but never recaptured his 2007 form.