Raechelle Chase placed 10th in her Pro debut at the Sacramento Pro on Sat 7 November. The top 3 placegetters were Kristi Tauti, Cheryl Brown and Huong Arcinas.

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       Raechelle @ Sacramento Pro
7 Nov 09

Raechelle Talks about getting her Figure Pro Card
  Raechelle Chase's record in figure competitions reads like a fairy tale but a supercharged version. Raechelle first competed (but did not place) in Nov 07 at the NABBA North Harbour, then won her Novice Figure Tall class at NZFBB Akl Champs 08. Placed 2nd in Novice Tall class at NZFBB Nationals and 2nd Open Tall class at Thames 08. Placed 2nd at NZFBB Bodyfitness Nationals 09 and now she's off to compete in the Pro ranks.
Her announcement of being awarded an IFBB Figure Pro card has certainly sparked plenty of chat and opinions amongst the bodybuilding fraternity so we thought we'd talk to Raechelle herself and find out how she actually got one. 

So in this exclusive interview with Raechelle we ask her the tough questions and the answers you want to know!

There's a perception that there's been favoritism towards you because of the Body fitness rule change, which only affected you, what are your views on that? 

I was contacted a few months ago by Paul Dillet, President of the WBFF in Canada and asked to compete in the Pro Figure Class at The World Champs in September. So I had planned to do this show, but after giving it some thought I decided that I wanted to stick with IFBB and pursue my dream of competiting as an IFBB Pro Figure competitor.

Raechelle, Monty, Kristy 
@ NZFBB Nats Oct 09

I wanted to compete in the Body fitness class at Nationals since it's judged by Pro figure rules (with the exception of the routine) and I have never liked all the posing which is required in figure. I had intended to qualify at CNI's to do this, and then I heard about the rule change, (of which I had nothing to do with), so obviously I didn't need to compete. So why would I? It doesn't bother me that people think I had anything to do with this. I'm not on the committee, I have no idea what goes on in the committee, so it's irrelevant.

What was the background to you getting your Pro card? Did you apply to the NZFBB, was it your idea or did someone suggested it to you?

Firstly I didn't get given my Pro Card, I had to apply for it, and it had to be accepted by the president of the IFBB in the US.

I had planned to apply for my Pro card regardless of my placing at Nationals. It's up to the president of the IFBB in the states to grant pro cards. He felt I would make a good Pro and my application was accepted.

(NB. you don't have to have won your class to apply for a Procard)

Some people say that you haven't paid your dues, as you've only competed in 5 shows in NZ and now you're going off to compete in the Pro ranks, how do you feel about that?

People always have their own opinions and judge accordingly, I don't let it bother me, I know what my goals are and I stay focused. If I worried about what everyone thought of me all the time, I wouldn't be where I am now. If I shouldn't have got, my Pro card, I wouldn't have got my pro card. End of story.

Seems in recent times, the buzzword in NZ bodybuilding is to turn Pro, what's the big deal about being Pro and why do you want to be one?  And why the rush?

Because everything is a rush for me, I'm not a patient person especially when it comes to achieving my goals. I have always felt like I would do better competiting in the States. Both my sponsors Lonsdale clothing and Body Ripped Sports Nutrition are based in Australia.

I'm fortunate to be promoted in almost every issue of Australian Muscle & Fitness & Oxygen magazines and I have always had, and continue to have great support & encouragement internationally to turn Pro.

It's not just about the competiting for me, it's about the opportunities that follow. The fitness industry in NZ is small (if you can even say we have one) I been a cover model for both our 2 NZ Fitness magazines, and worked for both, and continue to work for NZ Fitness magazine. There is nothing more for me in NZ, so naturally the next step is move onward and upward


Pretty clear from other NZ IFBB Male and Female Pros who have ventured overseas that its very competitive at that level and a top 15 placing could be tough (with exception of Moe), what do you think you have that will make you a successful Pro.?
Lets just wait until November 7th and then you can answer that yourself.

Are you aiming to come in differently from your Nationals outing for your Pro show the Sacramento in 3 weeks?

Of course!, Nationals was just a show that happened to be 4 weeks out from Sacramento. I didn't come in 100% for Nationals and I didn't plan to. I will be presenting my best package ever for Sacramento!

What advice do you have for others who aspire to Pro status?

Dream, Believe, achieve.
How will you know how far you will go if you don't jump in!

Any message that you want to give to your detractors, particularly those who have criticized the rule change and your pro status?

There's so much energy surrounding my name in NZ at the moment. It just makes me want to succeed that much more, I channel any negative energy into positive energy and use it as motivation.
At The Sacramento Pro the top 5 qualify for the Arnold and the top 3 for The Olympia.

The truth is, even if I did place in the top 5, people in NZ would find something else to criticize me for.
Some people just don't like to see people succeed. I just keep moving forward and don't look back.

Raechelle Chase
23 Oct 09

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