Saying no to junk food in favour of hours in the gym seems to have paid off for Slovenian sports student Marko Šobot, as he has placed among the front runners for the final of the Mister International contest. Now it will all come down to the final, on Saturday, when Marko will see if the preparation has paid off and he can take home the title to Slovenia.
For catwalk new-comer Marko, 26, being part of the international contest underway in Thailand is a world away from his hometown of Novo Mesto. “It felt surreal when I first heard that I was to compete at Mister International,’ he said.
“I think that I had a smile on my face probably for one week straight. But after that, I trained every day and tried to eat properly. I even stayed away from junk food restaurants. If I happened to break my diet, which did happen occasionally, the next day I trained twice as hard to compensate.”
If determination, commitment and focus were as important to achieving success as fitness, strength and form, Croat Vanja Grgec would be quids in to win whatever he set his mind on.
This Saturday, the 25-year-old personal trainer from Zagreb will have the perfect chance to show that he has what it takes to be a winner, when he steps out onto the stage to represent Croatia at the Mr World contest.
But Vanja is keen to say that he has not been swayed by the lure of the catwalk. “I am not a model,’ he said. “The only modelling I did was just a favour for a friend and was free of charge. I entered Mr World Croatia because I knew that with my education I could not just win, but that I could actually use it to better my life by combining my good looks with the person that I am. But if a good offer comes by, I am definitely open for modelling too.”
Loving parents and a strong family upbringing have encouraged Luka Raco to follow his dreams. As testament to the positive influence of his family, Luka’s dreams have led him to Bangkok, where he will represent Serbia at the Mister International contest, this weekend. “I can proudly say that I have amazing parents and we are a very loving family,’ Luka told Wild Rooster.
“Without their help and good will I couldn’t achieve anything. My father is the greatest man I know. He is a man who does everything for his family. He is the man I would like to become.”
Luka is an only child who lives at home with his parents, Rista and Radmila. Thoughts of them will be with Luka when he competes on Saturday night. “When I walk out at the final, I will think about my family, my friends and try to picture the look on their faces, their happiness for me. That will motivate me to do my best,’ he said.
Balkan manhood will be put to the test when representatives from five ex-YU states will take to the stage in two international contests. While the Balkans has long been well known for its wealth of female beauty, the fine young men of the region sometimes feel that they have been overlooked somewhat. That could all change, this weekend, as the world is treated to not one but two showcases for modern masculinity.
Vanja Grgec (Croatia) and Zlatan Duratovic (Bosnia) will compete in the Mr World contest, which is taking place in Kent, the garden of England. In a series of challenges, the search for the world’s most desirable man has seen national representatives from 48 countries tackling mud-caked sporting trials, as well as revealing their talents for singing, dance and martial arts. All the fun will come to a head on 24 November, when the young men will take to a stage for the final judging.