One of the favorites to take gold at the Pan-American Jiu-Jitsu Championship , set to begin today, Leandro Lo signed a first-of-its-kind contract in Jiu-Jitsu. According to Jeferson Maycá, chief organizer of the Copa Pódio tournament, Lo is the first athlete to sign an exclusive contract with the event. Maycá himself is the one to shed light on what that entails:
“We’re still a long ways from being structured the way we’d like to be but this is, without a doubt, a first and big step on the way to Jiu-Jitsu becoming a professional sport. Our hopes are that, little by little, we will put together a cast that would even be the envy of major MMA events,” dreams the promoter.
As far as the exclusive nature of the athlete’s contract, Maycá states that Pódio is not competing with the traditional structure of competition Jiu-Jitsu—quite the contrary: “Our idea is to invest in the fighters, to complement and add to the Jiu-Jitsu scene. The exclusivity of Leandro’s contract only restricts him from participating in events that are similar to the Copa Pódio GPs, not the traditional, established events. Case in point: Lo will compete at the 2012 Pan this weekend, as well as in Abu Dhabi.”
To celebrate signing his contract, the organizers of the event, of which Leandro was the very first champion, are launching a promotion for the black belt from São Paulo’s fans.
Anyone within the country of Brazil who “likes” the athlete’s fanpage and shares pictures they have taken with him or will take with him by April 30 will be automatically join the contest to win 50 tickets to the Middleweight Grand Prix, at which Lo will compete on July 21 at the Rio de Janeiro municipal gymnasium.
The owners of the first 50 photos with Leandro Lo shared will receive the tickets, and the five best photos will earn a plane ticket to watch the event in Rio. The url of Leandro Lo’s fanpage is http://www.facebook.com/leandrolo.jj. The tickets are limited to contestants in Brazil.
To find out all there is to know about the 2012 Jiu-Jitsu Pan and Leandro Lo’s campaign there, keep up with our bulletins on the