The current medium-heavyweight champion of Europe, Rodrigo “Pimpolho” Fajardo of Gracie Barra Curitiba will be defending his title in Lisbon this weekend.
“I’ve been preparing for this championship ever since November. Thank God I have plenty of variety in sparring partners at GB Curitiba; these days I don’t need to leave the academy to get good training,” Pimpolho told GRACIEMAG.com recently.
“This year I want to compete at everything. But what I’m dreaming about is the Worlds. It’s the first time I’ll get to be there as a black belt. Last year I finally got my visa, after being turned down three times. Just being able to be in the game to me is awesome,” added the fighter, who revealed who he feels will be his trickiest opponent at the European Open.
“I feel my biggest obstacle will be me, myself: my ego,” he theorized.
“He’s the one holding me back from taking risks. He’s asking me the whole time, ‘What will they think of you if the move doesn’t work?’ He’s the one keeping me from trying my luck with new things. He’s the one that keeps me from doing one last roll when I’m already really tired. ‘And what if you lose the roll, what will they say?’ The ego is also our rival when we win—when you’re all cocky, thinking that moment will last forever. That is being a slave to your ego. Fighters who think they’re better than the rest because they win a Jiu-Jitsu tournament, rather than moving forward in their journey and helping the community around them, they are slaves to their egos. My fight is always with the ego,” philosophized the champion.
Don’t miss Pimpolho’s fight with himself and his opponents. Stay tuned to GRACIEMAG.com for coverage.
The European Open is already underway in Lisbon.
Click here to check out the brackets.