Gilbert Burns, known as Durinho, impressed everyone in the last Jiu-Jitsu World Championship when he defeated lightweight favorites like Lucas Lepri, and was hit only at the end by the champion Michael Langhi.
This season, the Atos Jiu-Jitsu black belt hopes to do well in all the competitions and at the first opportunity will be in the European Championship, which takes place on the 28th to the 31st of January in Lisbon, Portugal (Register here).
Check out the fighter’s chat with GRACIEMAG.com.
How are preparations going for the European Championship?
I’m already enrolled, nearly at weight, and training very hard to do well again. Everyone is focused here in Rio Claro, São Paulo. Guto Campos arrived from the South, the Mendes brothers are also training hard, and Bruno Frazatto will arrive soon. We also have some new black belts who are coming strong, like Rodrigo Caporal, who will fight featherweight with Rafael Mendes. Everyone is very focused on showing up prepared for the European Championship, to later soar at the World Championship.
Last year you impressed everyone for the lightweights at the World Championship. Are you fighting in the European Championship in the same category?
I’ll be in lightweight. My weight had gone up a little at the end of the year, but I’m almost there and I’ll be strong in the category. I’m training to continue the work that was done last year. The guys are fighting there, saying they are number one, and I’m just here training. Jacaré in lightweight is getting there! Frazatto will decide if he’s going lightweight, too, and I hope that we can do well together there.
What is the main focus for you and the team this season?
The main focus is always the World Championship. We won’t leave out on other competitions, like the Abu Dhabi Championship and others. We want to fight them all, but mainly it’s the World Championship. Ramon (Lemos) is making a timeline here for us and we’ll organize it. We want to be at the Pan and at the Brazilian, too. We’ll do it for all the fans and the team, which shortly will be one year old.
You recently took a series of trips through Asia. What did you learn there?
They were needing a black belt to give lessons in Singapore, a project that Ramon is in charge of. At first, there were only six students and I got a good response. It was very productive, and in the end we already had around 30 students. We have three branches in Asia and there will be more. It was important because I could train the muay thai and boxing part a lot, since up ahead something could happen at MMA. Now, in January, another group will go there to keep working. I loved it. I’d never been to Asia and was very well received in Singapore, the Philippines, and Hong Kong.