No Problems; Just Solutions. Gainesville Classic
Thursday night Tony Curtis promoter of the Gainesville Classic cancer charity fundraising bodybuilding contest recieved a call from a French speaking gentleman in a very loud and excited tone noting he must compete in the Gainesville Classic. Curtis did as best he could to decipher the callers concerns and intent. Having travelled from Paris the caller was in Miami without transportation, but having cancer himself and being a former French bodybuilder in decades past he wanted to participate as a possible last opportunity to be on stage. Curtis confirmed he was welcome to participate if he could make the mandatory check-in time on Friday between 5-8pm. So the Frenchman committed to make the trip. Several times over the course of Friday afternoon the Frenchman called Curtis with updates. At one point his bus had traveled past Gainesville taking him to Tallahassee, Florida instead. He re-routes to Gainesville and calls Curtis when he arrives after 5pm at a gas station where some bystanders updated Curtis that they were bringing the Frenchman to the check-ins. Making a grand and loud entrance speaking to his phone on video and an audience of officials, volunteers and other athletes the Frenchman passionately shared his relief that he’d arrived and knew absolutely nothing about the divisions other than bodybuilding, which he felt he was unqualified to participate in due to diminished size. It turns out the reason for his loud speech was near deafness due to being in close proximity to one of the Paris terrorist bomb blasts. Curtis, Michael Matassa and Pete Fancher worked with the Frenchman to find the appropriate division, which was decided to be men’s physique as he did not have the appropriate tights for Classic physique, but did have board shorts. The Frenchman’s wish was coming true. He was being welcomed on stage at a show dedicated to helping find a cure for the disease afflicting him and so many others. In his instance he stated he felt it might be his last and only weeks after the birth of his only grandchild. He didn’t know what division to enter or how to pose for them, didn’t know if he would have the money sufficient to enter or have a hotel bed to sleep in or transportation to the event or back to Miami before returning to Paris. As he stated numerous times “no problems; only solutions.” He was asked where he would sleep and he said it didn’t matter, “under a bridge or wherever. No problems only solutions.” Fancher having been the foremost regional bodybuilding magazine publisher in the Southeast with his Southern Muscle Plus has had extensive contacts within the bodybuilding community around the world including a leading publisher in Paris that Fancher asked the Frenchman about. The Frenchman was startled by Fancher’s knowledge of his countryman and specific other friends they shared in common. Others seeing this spectacle play out knew this was something special. This was one of those special moments that demonstrate the passion, long standing commitments to purpose and community that those in the bodybuilding community for the long haul value most and one of the reasons the NPC Gainesville Classic holds a special place in the hearts of many. With passport in hand the entry form was filled out by one Thierry Maurio, former IFBB French Bodybuilder and founder of Club du Chateau Fontainebleau. Maurio will be competing in masters and open men’s physique having been taught a few moves by NPC national level men’s physique competitor and official Michael Matassa and transported to the event via staff with a litany of other good will provided him that we are not at liberty to disclose. This is a charity event you don’t want to miss.