Seat Time Racing School hosted a NASCAR driving event at Dover International Speedway on Saturday, July 22, allowing anyone with a need for speed and a couple hundred bucks to get behind the wheel on the Monster Mile.
Steven Mitropoulos was pretty pumped up when the judges’ final numbers were tabulated.
Sure, the 24-year-old Cherry Hill resident had just captured the collegiate bodybuilding national overall title at the NPC Teen Collegiate and Masters National Championships during a competition last month in Pittsburgh.
However, almost as satisfying, was the victory fulfilled a bold prediction he made to his father when he was a skinny 130-pound senior at Cherry Hill West High School.
“This was the competition I’ve dreamed of winning. It took five years to get there, but I got it,” said Mitropoulos, who has bulked up his muscle-framed body to 212 pounds. “I wanted to win the show for myself, but it also meant a lot to do it for my dad too.”
Mitropoulos grew up playing ice hockey, but he said his small 5-foot-6 frame would always put him at a disadvantage.
When he got to high school, Mitropoulos often endured being picked on because of his size.
“I just didn’t really fit in and often had not-so-nice things said to me,” he recalled.
That’s when he turned to barbells to get rid of the barbs, joining his father in the basement of their home to hit the weights.
“That’s when my life just changed,” he said. “My dad got me into lifting weights, then I…