The big name from the 2010 World Pro, Claudio Calasans, had a solid showing this season as well. Despite his defeat in the absolute division prior to reaching the final, the Atos black belt did take top spot in the under-83-kg weight class. Direct from Abu Dhabi, Calasans spoke with GRACIEMAG.com.
What did you make of your performance this year?
I always go in there to do my best, and this time was no different. The level at the event was really high, I only had tough fights. I went in really focused, and in all the championships I enter, win or lose, I analyze the mistakes I make to be sure they don’t happen again, always striving for perfection with my Jiu-Jitsu.
What was missing in the absolute this time?
I think I needed to spend some more time adapting to the six-minute match duration. We’d been training hard for the Pan and the Euro, where the matches last ten minutes, although I know full well I had the right stuff to win the title this time. Unfortunately, in my fourth match – against Cobrinha – I attacked the whole time but made a mistake where I couldn’t make one. It wasn’t meant to be this year – there are plenty of absolutes coming up down the road and I know that I have what it takes to win any absolute I enter, regardless of the opponent. That makes me very confident.
What are your goals now?
The Worlds is coming up, so I’m going to focus on it. I don’t know if I’ll be in any events before then, but regardless, I’m going to gear my training towards the Worlds. That’s the title I’m missing from my mantel and I’m going to train just right so I get there in the best shape possible, better prepared than for any event I’ve ever been in. Whether I’ll be in the absolute or not is not for certain, but I might very well be in that too!
What do you make of your match against Vinicius Corrales?
The final was one more tough match among so many. I started out falling behind in the very first minute. However, I was really confident I would win and forged ahead single-mindedly going for victory from start to finish. I was getting too used to having an easier time, since I was coming off to wins in important finals at the European Open and Pan, where I got the finish in my matches. The end result is what counts, and thank God I’m managing to stay at the top of my division.
I want to thank everyone who has been involved in my wins: my teach, Atos; the folks from my hometown of São José dos Campos who are always rooting for me and helping me at the gym. Shoot, there are a lot of people to thank, many friends who support me and are always encouraging me regardless of results. My family that roots for me from home, especially my wife, who is five-months pregnant and who helps me to focus on my profession, holding up the fort at home. I’m really happy with the results! Thanks!