“Franco Columbu was an Italian bodybuilder, weightlifter, and professional wrestler. He competed in the 1976 Montreal Olympics in Greco-Roman wrestling. Columbu also became Arnold Schwarzenegger’s training partner to help him achieve his goal of winning Mr Olympia.”
Franco Columbu is one of the most successful bodybuilders in history, with a career spanning over 30 years. He was born in Sardinia on October 17th, 1944 and won his first competition at age 15. Franco’s weightlifting abilities soon led him to powerlifting competitions as well.
In 1968 he began competing in bodybuilding contests but it was not until 1971 that he made an impression with his victory at the IFBB Mr. Europe contest . And with two more victories under his belt by 1973, Franco had become a household name among body building enthusiasts around the world!
In 1974 Franco came to the United States to train with Arnold and together they became world-renowned as two of the most successful bodybuilders in history. Franco later went on to win three Mr Olympia titles – 1975, 1976 and 1981 – but never won an Arnold Classic event that he competed in against his lifelong friend.
Franco Columbu and Arnold Schwarzenegger were training partners in the 1970s. What did Arnold say about Franco after he left for Italy? “I was with him when we got into bodybuilding and I helped him out and then all of a sudden, he tells me that he is going to Europe to make some money.”