On the week of the 2012 European Jiu-Jitsu Championship, GRACIEMAG.com caught up with Guto Campos while he was overseeing the makeover his school in the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre is undergoing. The Southern Brazilian was mulling over ideas regarding the female dressing room with the architect, but at the same time he was laying out his plans for the season.
“I didn’t get to be at the Euros [he won the absolute division there in 2010] because of this refurbishment. But next week I’ll head to São Paulo to train with my teammates at Atos, focusing on the Abu Dhabi tryouts in Gramado. I want to secure my spot in the Middle East so I can go into the IBJJF Pan with my mind at ease. And I’ll keep up with the Europeans over the internet; I want to see who’s at the head of the pack at the start of the season.”
EYES ON OPPONENTS ON THE MATS ABROAD
Another Southern Brazilian who is sitting out the European Open, due to injury, but will be keenly watching the results as they surface is Vinicius Corrales, otherwise known as “Pulga”, from Sul Jiu-Jitsu academy: “I got back to training this week; I want to be solid for the Gramado tryouts. The results from the Europeans will help me analyze my likely opponents.” Last year Pulga won the No-Gi championship and took runner-up in the Gi Jiu-Jitsu championship in Abu Dhabi, losing in the final of the under-83kg division to Cláudio Calasans, Guto’s training partner at Atos.
Now Rio de Janeiro native Igor Silva is in Portugal and planning to take the first half of the competition-year by storm, making a stab at the Europeans, Gramado tryouts, and the Pan. Sport Jiu-Jitsu superstars Marcus Bochecha, Moacir Mendes, Mário Reis, Giovane Guedes and Bruno Frazatto and others are all tipped to be at the Abu Dhabi tryouts in Brazil’s south as well.
So the first half of the Jiu-Jitsu year is indeed promising. The Abu Dhabi tryouts in Gramado by themselves will serve up top-caliber competition. And on March 10 and 11 the WPJJC tryouts in San Diego will bring even more excitement.
What do you think, who will be the big names to arise early this season, from the Euros to the Pan and on to Abu Dhabi?