As the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship does not feature a master division (although they have their own event, the Worlds Masters), many brave 30+ year-old competitors decide to jump in with the young guns.
For their fearlessness and devotion to Jiu-Jitsu, they deserve to be featured as one of the attractions for the 2014 Worlds.
We have selected the most notorious ones on each weight of the black belt division but know that they represent all of the 30+ year-old competitors that will sweat blood next weekend in Long Beach.
Milton Bastos, 32, trains since he was 13. Originally competing under Paragon JJ, he recently moved to Caio Terra Association, in San Jose, California. At the 2014 Pan, Milton was the protagonist of maybe the most thrilling match of the event. At the roosterweight semifinal, he needed to submit Ivaniel Oliveira two times to win. He then followed to win the silver medal in that competition. An avid competitor, Milton Bastos ranks 116 in the overall IBJJF adult black belt rankings.
Rafael Freitas, aka Barata, is the creator of the famous Baratoplata. Training since he was 13, Barata, now 30, is a fearless competitor with important results. He was the 2011 Pan adult black belt roosterweight champion, among many other titles. In the recent 2014 Pan, Barata went all the way to the semifinal, being stopped only by João Miyao. Freitas currently ranks 187 in the overall male adult black belt rankings.
Carlos Holanda, aka Esquisito, is from Manaus, north of Brazil. Originally a competitor under Gracie Barra, he then transferred to Checkmat. A two-time Pan champion (2008, 2010), among other titles, Esquisito (which means weird in Portuguese) is always a name to be taken in consideration. He current ranks 77 in the IBJJF overall adult male black belt rankings.
Mario Reis, 34, has been on the featherweight podium of the Worlds since 2003. A two-time worlds champion (2003/2004), Reis is still on the top five of the featherweight division, even 11 years into the game. Originally a BTT athlete, Reis then moved to Gracie Barra and now is a part of the Alliance team since 2011. He ranks 42 in the overall IBJJF male adult black belt rankings.
Denilson Pimenta turns 34 years old on June 2, one day after the 2014 Worlds ends. A great performance in Long Beach will be a great gift for the featherweight from GFT. A Rio Open champion in 2009 besides other titles, Pimenta is always an important name in the division. He ranks 6 in the IBJJF Master 1 black belt rankings.
Wellington Dias, 46, is an example to be followed. He is the only person to have competed in all 18 editions of the World Jiu-Jitsu championship as a black belt. He is at it again, training hard at his school in Arizona and should surprise some people with his helicopter sweeps and more. Megaton is currently not ranked by the IBJJF.
Celso Venícius, 30, is a three-time world champion. The last title came in 2008 (before that, he won in 2005 and 2006) and recently he has been devoting to his academy in São Paulo and his successful MMA career (Celsinho is 4-0 in the cage). After a three-year hiatus since 2011, Celsinho is back to the lightweight division and for sure will make some noise. He is not ranked by the IBJJF.
Alan do Nascimento, 32, also known as Finfou, grew up in Jiu-Jitsu with the legend Fernando Tererê. At the Cantagalo community, in Rio de Janeiro, he started having classes at the social project Tererê put together. Now a successful BJJ professor in Stockhom, Sweden, Finfou is also an avid and tough competitor. A three-time European champion (2007 – 2009), Finfou can create lots of trouble in the division. He is ranked 37 in the overall IBJJF male adult black belt rankings.
Eduardo Telles, 38, is one of the most inventive Jiu-Jitsu competitors of all times. Developer of the octopus and the turtle guards, Telles is a Pan champion (2007) and Worlds No-Gi champion (2013). In the Worlds, his best results were three bronze medals. Telles is ranked 57 in the IBJJF male master 2 black belt rankings.
Roberto Alencar, aka Tussa, 33, is one of the most active competitors in the Gracie Barra roster. Both in the master and the adult division, Tussa is always a force to be taken into consideration. He is a four-time World No-Gi champion and Pan champion in 2007. Tussa is ranked 71 in the IBJJF overall adult male black belt rankings.
Gustavo “Siri” Pires is another one of the stars in the Gracie Barra competition team. In Jiu-Jitsu since the age of 15, he received his black belt in 2003, from Carlos Gracie Jr. Among many titles, he is a Worlds Masters champion (2012) and a Pan champion at the master division. In the adult division, he won double gold at the 2014 Chicago Spring Open. Gustavo ranks 48 in the IBJJF overall adult male black belt rankings.
Bruno Bastos, 34, was one of the leaders of Nova União until recently when he went independent with his Bastos BJJ Association team. An avid competitor, Bastos accumulates titles throughout his career. He is a Rio International Open champion (2008) and Pan and Worlds No-Gi champion in the masters division. He is ranked 2 in the IBJJF masters black belt rankings.
Marcio Corletta, 38, is a black belt world champion. He won the same ultra-heavy division in 2001. Since then, Corleta make occasional appearances in the competition circuit, still showing the well known technique and pressure. His most recent achievement was the 2009 Pan ultra-heavy division. Corletta is not ranked by the IBJJF at this moment.