The Thailand Bodybuilding Association organised its 28th edition of the Mr. Thailand in the weekend of 17-18 May. This competition is one of Thailand's three major bodybuilding events, the others being the Latchford Classic in October, and the National Games in December.
Although originally planned for March in Chang Rai, the competition was moved from the north of the country to the capitol, as the originally intended venue was not ready in time. Bangkok's Thai-Japan Youth Centre therefore provided the stage for 119 athletes who competed in 14 different classes. The winner of the men's overall bodybuilding category was awarded the "HRH Princes Maha Chakri Sirindhorn's Cup" and the title of "Mr. Thailand".
Athletes from the Thai national team were unable to compete as they were in the midst of preparing for the Asian Championships hosted by Hong Kong coming July. These athletes represent some of Asia's best competitive bodybuilders: at the Asian Championships in Shanghai last year, only host China managed to win more medals than Thailand.
This left the field wide open to anyone aiming for a top spot.
In the Junior Men Bodybuilding category, a much improved Sontaya Boonlaue surprised himself by beating Chanwit Chaiwong who had won the previous two editions of the Mr. Thailand. Chanwit Chaiwong may not have been at his best as he had to serve in the army for most of the year. Serm Saynesesakoon prolonged his title in the Master Men Bodybuilding class for bodybuilders of 45 years and older.
Many more women took part in the event compared to other years. However, nobody was able to dethrone Roongtawan Jindasing, as she easily expanded her trophy case with 2 more wins from the Women Bodybuilding and the Ms. Fitness categories. Khanittha Makongsuk, a stewardess for Thai Airways, was the surprising new face in the new Body Fitness category and rightfully took home the title.
The new Body Classic category proved to be very popular with 34 athletes going for gold in 2 separate classes. Body Classic for Novices was won by 22 year old Pichitpong Mangklad from Chang Mai, who was a familiar face on the fitness scene and has now moved over to bodybuilding. Expect to see a lot more from him in the future. The winner in the other Body Classic category, for "experienced" bodybuilders, was Parinya Aimoey, also 22 years old and also from Chang Mai. Number two, Worakorn Wongsakornmuang, may have lost the top spot by shedding too much weight: he came in at 72kg whereas he normally competes in the 85kg category.