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’08 Jacksonville Pro Figure—M.E. Lado Is the Comeback Kid

What a nice surprise this morning to wake up to the results of the Jacksonville Pro Figure Championship, promoted by Dexter Jackson in the Florida town of the same name on August 1 and 2, a.k.a. yesterday and the day before. Mary Elizabeth Lado must have decided to stick around the sport for a while—and at the top—as the scores sheet posted at say that her first-place finish was unanimous. Ditto for the landings of runner-up Jessica Paxson-Putnam and third-placer Kristal Richardson—nothing like a panel that knows its own mind. All three earned a place on the Olympia invite list (when was the last time *that happened), which brings the lineup for the season-finale bodo-O-rama up to 22, with four contests to go before the big show.

Twenty-nine beautiful bods hit the lineup in the Sunshine State. Though I was not on hand to catch them quarter-turning in the flesh (thanks to and for making available the callouts and the early results), those are the three I’d have picked out to do well had I been pressed for predictions. I’d also have mentioned Elisha Archibold, Jane Awad and Kristi Tauti as contenders—Elisha because she did well last year but didn’t quite make the O, Jane because you never know when the judges are going to like her look, and Kristi because she was coming off a third-place finish at the Cal. They took fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively, which just goes to show you, while Krissy Chin, seventh at the Houston Pro a month ago, came in ahead of the trio, in fourth.

Regarding M.E Lado, I had heard that she decided to pull back and do some serious work in the gym rather than rush into the Arnold Sports Festival’s Figure International, even though she was the two-time defending champ there. A lackluster performance at the ’07 Figure Olympia had resulted in a 10th-place finish. Folks were wondering where her head was—and where her physique had gone. Apparently, it went to Florida, where she reportedly found the conditioning she lost in Vegas and maybe a little muscle size too.

Good for you, M.E. And good for Jessica and Kristal, a couple of gals whom I’ve been waiting to see move up the score sheets. It’ll be the first Olympia appearance for Ms. Richardson, the second for Ms. P-P.

Here are the complete placings:

’08 IFBB Jacksonville Pro Figure Championship

1) Mary Elizabeth Lado
2) Jessica Paxson-Putnam
3) Kristal Richardson
4) Krissy Chin
5) Jane Awad
6) Kristi Tauti
7) Elisha Archibold
8) Marcy Porter
9) Allison Jones-Williams
10) Andrea Dumon (tie)
10) Kristin Gomez
12) Jessica Lyons
13) Claire Parmley
14) Melissa Montanaro-Griffin
15) Melissa Pearo
16) Tivisay Briceno
17) Christine Wan
18) Thais Cabrices-Werner
18) Becky Clawson
18) Sherma Del Tergo
18) Patricia Mello
18) Petra Mertl
18) Susanne Niederhauser
18) Larissa Reis
18) Stephanie Togrul-Tulin
18) Irina Veseova
18) Tessa Wood


Top: Mary Lado at the ’07 Figure International.

Above: Kristal Richardson at the ’08 Figure I.

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