It was said by emcee Lonnie Teper before his individual posing routine and by Arnold Schwarzenegger upon congratulating Branch Warren, and "I'll be back" was never more appropriate as it was on Saturday evening at the Veterans Memorial. The huge Texan made it two in a row at the Arnold Classic by defeating an-on point Dennis Wolf and has fully rebounded from a quad tear he suffered in 2011.
Warren takes a $130,000 check home to his wife Trish and newborn baby daughter and the hard luck Wolf - who was the runner-up last March, as well - received $75,000. Evan Centopani was extremely impressive and placed third, a spot up from last year. Canadian Ben Pakulski finished fourth (moving up six spots from 2011) and Dexter Jackson took fifth.
Also making the pose down was Lionel Beyeke and the Frenchman who won the FLEX Pro on February 18 made a big statement in his inaugural Arnold.
It was a clean sweep for Warren in Columbus, as he also won the Most Muscular Man and Most Entertaining Posing Awards.
The crowd was mixed upon the announcement of Wolf finishing second, and although Warren is a huge fan favorite, it appeared that the big German had enough for a victory. But Warren also did his homework and it is difficult to argue too much against his top spot.
In the bikini division, Sonia Gonzalez unseated defending champion Nicole Nagrani, who finished third behind India Paulino.