Judging by the IBJJF’s official competitor list for the 2012 Jiu-Jitsu World Championship, which kicks off this Thursday, there will be gis with the red shield of Gracie Barra as far as the eyes can see.
There are 277 Gracie Barra athletes on this year’s lineup—around 10% of the entire competition. The team members converging in California for the tournament hark from the far reaches of the globe, like Brazil, Canada, Russia and Hungary, and their objective is simple: win or learn.
So to make the most of so many thick-skinned visitors, Carlos Gracie Jr.’s school set up a special program of congresses and lectures, which begins the day after the championship in Long Beach.
“Firstly, were counting on our team to put in a good showing at the Worlds,” said team coordinator Marcio Feitosa. “Zé Radiola along with the other instructors put together training camps and managed to inspire and unite one burly team. We’re going there to take first place,” wagered the Jiu-Jitsu professor.
(Watch Carlos Gracie Jr., 56, training with the group heading to the 2012 Worlds:)
Right after the competition wraps up, the GB USA, Brazil and Canada conference season begins. There will be events mixing Jiu-Jitsu seminars (open to all the students) and meetings (for the brown and black belts and school-certified instructors).
“We’re already focused on the GB conferences, something that’s been a major help in bringing the team together. The June 4 conference in Orange County will be one of the biggest events for the school in 2012,” added Feitosa.
The conference is the brain-child of Carlos Gracie Jr., whose aim with the event is to demonstrate ow GB schools are looking to offer the utmost comfort so its teachers may teach safely and in peace—a move that has also meant comfort to the students.
“Everyone who holds a leadership role at Gracie Barra schools will see great benefits from the presentations, learning new techniques and getting a better understanding of how the in-house Gracie Barra structure works. From there, they’ll realize how they can best make use of this structure,” states the team founder in an interview posted on the official school website.
Two conferences have already taken place this year, one in April in Texas and the other in May in Orlando. Check out the schedule for the upcoming events:
* JUNE 4, ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA
With: Master Carlos Gracie Jr., Professors Marcio Feitosa, Flavio Almeida, Marco Joca, Ricardo Almeida
*JUNE 23, CAMPINAS, SÃO PAULO
With: Professors Marcio Feitosa, Flavio Almeida and Carlos Liberi
* JULY 28, ATLANTA, GEORGIA
With: Master Carlos Gracie Jr., Professors Fabio Costa, Marcio Feitosa, Flavio Almeida and Marco Joca
* AUGUST 17, SEATTLE, WASHINTON
With: Master Carlos Gracie Jr., Professors Rodrigo Lopes, Marcio Feitosa, Flavio Almeida and Marco Joca
*OCTOBER 26, VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA
With: Master Carlos Gracie Jr., Professors Rodrigo Carvalho, Marcio Feitosa, Flavio Almeida and Marco Joca