IronMan, Vol 21, No 3, Page 8, January 1962
TWO Americans emerged victorious with both the Amateur and Professional titles at the Universe contests held in London. Tanned bodies glossed by the footlights, slender well-shaped figures moved across the stage with lithe scintillation. In turn they displayed the major muscle areas of their physiques with grim-faced determination. The occasion: 13th Mr. Universe contest of an international get together of world class bodybuilders.
A capacity crowd roared with approval when Bill Pearl, Sacramento, California was announced Pro Mr. Universe.
With the massive Pearl in great shape and smiling with pleasure, the story behind the success is revealed. Bill admitted that he had been training solidly for a whole year in order to win this contest. This statement can be believed when he goes into a breathtaking posing routine.
1961 PROFESSIONAL MR. UNIVERSE
1961 AMATEUR MR. UNIVERSE
Opinion had it that he has the solidarity of Reg Park and the flexibility of Bruce Randall. Yet behind the mountains of muscle, golden tan, the man is quiet and restrained even in victory.
The Amateur title went to Ray Routledge who flew in from Germany where he is currently doing a stint in the Army. According to the figures in the program Ray didn't seem anything exceptional. But the difference is that he has the right things in the right places and was in superb athletic condition.
Out there on the stage Ray stood out among the big boys with a refined and chiseled appearance. At 29 and the father of a family of five Ray proves that in bodybuilding you can mature with age.
Class 2 Pro title was taken by England's Len Sell who won the Amateur class title twice and was 1959 overall Amateur Universe title holder. Yvon Permal, Guadeloupe, was placed second with the dynamic little Belgian, Nicolas Kemp safely in third place.
Len Sell has only recently moved into the Pro ranks since his recent win in a nationwide T.V. Adonis contest. This was the third time Yvon Permal has competed in the Universe show.
Pro 1 class was a major item on the program. It was in this section we saw Bill Pearl oust Earl Maynard from Barbados, twice winner of the Amateur Class 1 title. Earl was in great shape but Bill, evaluated as one of the greatest-ever bodybuilders to come out of America, was too much for him this time. Third place went to Clive Green, a Kiwi, who traveled all the way from New Zealand to compete. Reub Martin, England, got the fourth place. And at 40 Reub must have a personal record of the most entries and places in the contest-13 to be precise.
Norway was represented for the first time in these contests, and Olav Hansen took fifth place in this class.
On Saturday it was close and sticky, yet a capacity crowd squeezed into the Victoria Palace Theatre-the home of the famed comedy team, The Crazy Gang-and after filling up all the available seats they stood in the gangways.
When the curtain went up the whole entry was assembled on the stage. This brief glimpse of the world's top physiques was too much to take in at one glimpse. So the professional and amateur classes were each to have a spot. This grand breakdown of the whole was spliced with variety acts which were all based on the various strength and physique aspects of physical culture.
However, the eleven judges, including Leo Stern, California, one of America's best-known physical culture authorities, closely examined the contestants and put them in their respective places. The boys put their clothes back on and impatiently and nervously awaited the results which would be announced at the show on the following day.
Among the judging panel which had an international flavor, was Jean Conju, president of the Union Cultureste Beige, and several of Britain's leading physical culturists who in their day have won many international titles and awards.
Cameramen looking for good physique shots got a lensful at the judging of the universe competitors the day before the show. While the competitors paraded before the sharp-eyed judges, flash bulbs popped like a fireworks display. As each man went through his routine of poses on the dais, photographers flashes caught him at various instances of the pose.
The twenty-five contestants from twenty-five countries stretched the judging panel who had the task of sifting them and classifying them into places. Among the spectators, too, speculation was hot. Not many could put the finger on the class winners or the overall title winners.
First on the list was a brief glimpse of beauty in the form of the Junior Miss Great Britain title seekers. These girls were selected on a round Britain area process. All the girls were weight trained and under 18 years of age on January 1st of this year.
Winner was Jeannette Gaynor of Derby. Last year's holder, Barbara Lee of Bristol was this time in second place.
To break up the large chunks of title seeking physique boys the show was spliced with a series of acts which are derived from the b/b repertoire, gymnastics from Britain's leading Army team, through the balancing and tumbling routines to the last act which combined muscle power and comedy in the form of cabaret star Ted Durante. Said Durante: "This is the greatest audience I have ever played for." Probably because they appreciated the basic principles of the strength act with some brilliant humor.
Here is a quick review of the classes: Amateur Class 1-Ray Routledge beat Adrian Heryet, England into second place Third spot went to Christian Barreau, current Mr. Europe, of France. Among the final six was young Paul Nash, England, who is in his first year among the seniors. During his junior career Paul was twice winner of the Junior Mr. Britain title.
Class 2: Hairdresser John Hewlett, England, maintained his winning streak when he was placed winner over Harry Henry, Grenada, and Basil Grant, Barbados. South African Douglas Bagott, who was entered when he won the Mr. South Africa title organized by Reg Park as an expense paid, was fifth, and Beresford Morris, Jamaica, was sixth.
Class 3 Amateur: Among the "little" men was as much competition for the personality vote as there was for the physiques. Dynamic Pierre Vandensteen bounced in from Belgium to get the majority over volatile Clancy Ang from Malaya. Vandensteen electrified the crowd with a matured performance. Elmo Santiago, Puerto Rico, now based in New York, was edged into third place. Three Britons, George Cox, Ted Gutteridge and Tony Rothwell, were 4, 5, and 6 respectively.
One interesting point emerges from the contests. It is illustrated by the reception the audience gave Bill Pearl. Throughout the short time on the plinth, the audience's applause drowned the orchestra in the pit. And so popular was Bill that he was almost bludgeoned into another posing routine at the Universe dance after the show. This time the boys who didn't get into the show got a glimpse of him.
The point in question is what is the Universe title worth? It is easy to see that Bill won more than a statuette-he got a lot more fans and friends too.
The actual value of the prize in terms of hard cash would not amount to more than a few dollars. But the whole point, of course, is that like Olympic Games medals and film Oscars, the value of Mr. Universe trophies cannot be computed in terms of money.
A man does not travel from America, Germany, New Zealand, or Norway to win a trophy because it happens to be worth a few dollars. He travels and competes to win a title which means more to him than anything else in the world.
The trophy is the proof that he has won that title. It is the same trophy that stands, in the place of honor in the homes of men like John Grimek, Mickey Hargitay, Reg Park and many others.
It is a trophy that cannot be bought for money. That is the value of the Mr. Universe title.
- Mr. Universe winners, left to right: Adrian Heryet 2nd place Amateur Mr. Universe Class 1: Ray Routledge winner of Amateru Mr. Universe; Bill Pearl winner of the Professional Mr. Unvierse; Earl Maynard 2nd place in Professional Mr. Universe and Class 1; Clive Green 3rd place in Professional Mr. Universe.
- Ray Routledge and Bill Pearl were in the best condition of their lives. Ray is a former pupil of Bill Pearl, tho now with the armed forces in Germany.
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