Leandro Lo is one of the biggest standouts of the 2011 competition season. The Cícero Costha student won the World Pro, the Brazilian Nationals, and the Rio Open. Furthermore, he’s been showing he’s got what it takes to hang in the absolute. Last weekend at the World Pro tryouts in Natal, Brazil, Lo won both the under-74kg division and the absolute. Here’s what the black belt had to say to GRACIEMAG.com:
What did you think of your performance at the event?
I had a lot of tough matches against athletes I wasn’t yet familiar with. There was a guy from Roraima, one from Rio Grande do Norte, one from São Paulo… I also came up against a really tough group in the absolute, really strong athletes. I faced folks I didn’t know of yet.
Did facing athletes you knew nothing about make things harder?
That’s certainly a factor that makes things a lot harder. Folks here have a different game, one I wasn’t familiar with yet. It was a really tough competition, and I really enjoyed it.
You’ve been standing out a lot in 2011, to what do you owe that?
The secret is training a lot. Things are clicking in training, so that helps in competition.
What about the World Pro? There’s still some time to go, but how do you plan to keep the pace up until then?
I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing. I’ve been competing every weekend for the past five weeks, so I’m keeping up the rhythm. I can’t stop.
Is it better to compete in so many competitions, or might you at some point overdo it?
I feel competing a lot is better; that’s how I see it. I like competing whenever possible. It keeps me in rhythm.