Two GP finals with not one Brazilian in sight. This may sound like the outcome of a tournament held somewhere not yet colonized by any BJJ schools, but it happened at the Copa Podio event held in Rio de Janeiro last Saturday, Feb. 16. The titles of the lightweight GP and Orange League were defined in duels featuring athletes from Norway, Australia and the Philippines.
In the lightweight GP, where ten athletes fought in two groups of five looking for points to advance to the semis, two casualties during the competition turned out to be decisive: Luan Carvalho and Yan Pica-Pau, two of the favorites, got injured right at the start and left a vacuum for other names to shine.
Tommy Langaker, a 2018 Worlds runner-up and Podio veteran, claimed victory after choking Tarik Hopstok, a brown-belt. The two Norwegians made up the organization’s first-ever fully foreign final.
In the Orange League, where orange-belts competed in a GP format, Australia’s Brodi Mayocchi beat Arjuna Brown, an American of Filipino heritage, in the final.
Also noteworthy were Kyle Mayocchi, the winner of the green belt superfight; David Vieira’s finish over Thales Leites in a gi superfight; and Ruan Oliveira’s win in the trials that earned him a spot in the middleweight GP scheduled for May, which sources told Graciemag will take place in the country’s Northeast.
[With reporting by Caio Ferreira.]