STORM Grand Prix Coming,
Fontinelli to be Back and
Submission Wrestling Shaking Things up in Brazil!
The Brazilian Beat:
The holidays are now over and things are starting to get busy again for the fighters in Brazil, as the events are starting to approach and soon all the camps will be competing again. With the return of Abu Dhabi this year and the fact that the event will be held in Brazil, the mats all over the country have been as sweaty as ever as the top grapplers are preparing to compete in the Abu Dhabi Brazilian Trials. Submission Wrestling has becoming a fever in Brazil, new events are popping up everywhere and FCF is getting a hold of them all for you. However, strikers also will get their taste of work in the first months of the year as well… the first ever STORM Grand Prix promises to take the event to another level and Sergio Batarelli is also working hard to bring K-1 here. Also, early 2003 is looking way better than the end of 2002 to NHB veteran Claudionor Fontinelli, who is about to be back on the streets. There’s plenty to report and we’re still traveling, but keeping a close eye on the news, as "The Beat" continues hot on FCF in the even hotter Brazilian summer!
- PRIDE Middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva and Chute Boxe team coach Rudimar Fedrigo went to Japan this last Monday, January 13th of 2003 to attend at a memorial service for DSE’s late president Naoto Morishita. The news of Mr. Morishita’s death took everyone by surprise in Brazil, and Silva and his master had to almost jump on a plane to Japan while still shocked by the news. Both Silva and Fedrigo are expected back in Brazil this weekend.
- Speaking about Wanderlei Silva, his recovery after the knee surgery he took close to a month ago has been amazing. Silva has been doing the treatment accordingly and his knee has been reacting very well. The champion is already walking without the help of crutches and expects to resume his training in the coming weeks, and may be back in the ring before expected.
- IVC, MECA and UCC veteran Claudionor Fontinelli is about to be released in custody from prison. Fontinelli was allegedly caught robbing a store in Brazil along with four other men, while three of them managed to escape the seasoned fighter and one other were arrested and Fontinelli has been in jail since his arrest. However, with the help of part of the Brazilian NHB community and his lawyer, Claudionor is expected to be released soon to respond to the accusations in freedom, and expects to fight in the next MECA if the chance is presented.
- The return of the world’s biggest Submission Wrestling event in 2003, the Abu Dhabi tournament, is attracting a huge amount of attention in Brazil. The fact that the tournament will be held in Brazil, along with the absence of the event in 2002, is creating a bigger than ever interest for the event in the country, and the Brazilian trials for Abu Dhabi 2003 are promising to be "the thing" this late January in Brazil! Lots of top athletes from both Jiu-Jitsu and Luta-Livre will be appearing in the trials, to be held on January 22 in Rio de Janeiro, and only a select group of 500 guests will be able to witness the event which will determine what Brazilians may represent the country in the brackets of Abu Dhabi 2003 in Sao Paulo. FCF will be there covering all the action!
- With the return of the Abu Dhabi event in 2003, the interest for Submission Wrestling has been growing enormously in Brazil, and events are popping up all over the country. One of the premier events about to take place is the Second Submission Wrestling in Campos, Rio de Janeiro, as reported in the previous "Brazilian Beat" edition. The event will include a superfight between Brazilian Top Team member Carlos Barreto and Ruas Vale Tudo fighter Alexandre Cacareco, fighting for a prize money of 4,000 Reais (more than U.S. $1000). In addition to the superfight, plenty of famous name from the fighting game will be performing, such as Jiu-Jitsu icons Fredson Paixao, Ricardo De La Riva, Eduardo Jamelao and Vinicius Draculino, NHB veteran and Luta-Livre legend Johil de Oliveira, as well as Ruas Vale Tudo team members Gustavo Ximu and Antoine Jaude. The 65kg division is stacked with the presence of Fredson, De La Riva, Draculino and BTT member Boca among others, and the 87kg division promises to be thrilling with the likely duel between Jamelao and Ximu. FCF plans to cover the action and will keep you posted about the event.
- Since Brazil is not only about grappling, plenty of exciting stand-up fighting events are also on the horizon. The Chute Boxe team is organizing the first-ever STORM Grand Prix, likely for February of 2003. STORM has been growing a lot lately and establishing itself as the country’s most important Muay Thai event. Now promoter Rafael Cordeiro feels it’s time for a bigger step and the Grand Prix will put eight of the best Muay Thai fighters (up to 80kg) in Brazil to compete in a tournament format, where one man will have to win three fights in one night to become the champion. Additionally, the event will also feature some single fights on the card, with the likely appearance of STORM veteran Marlon Matias, likely facing MECA veteran Alex Gaze, and a possible, although not certain, return of Ninja’s brother Mauricio "Shogun" Rua to the STORM ring. FCF will keep you posted on the details.
- IVC promoter Sergio Batarelli is also working on promoting stand-up fighting events in Brazil, and his next project is to promote a Brazilian version of K-1, likely on the 23rd of February. The event include the presence of official K-1 representatives and plans to follow the same structure as the famous Japanese event. The initial plan is to make the event at the Maksoud Plaza Hotel, a luxury venue where some WVC’s and IVC’s were held in the past and the event also will probably have television coverage in Brazil. FCF will continue to follow the developments.
- Chute Boxe fighter and PRIDE veteran Murilo "Ninja" Rua went back to training immediately as the Chute Boxe team’s vacations came to an end on January 6th, despite the eye injury he suffered in his match against Kevin "The Monster" Randleman at PRIDE 24. Ninja removed the stitches while on vacation, just to sadly find out that the doctor who removed them left three stitches above his eye without being removed! Without further implications the three "forgotten" stitches were also removed during vacation and as soon as he got back to Curitiba Ninja immediately got back to his regular training routine. The young PRIDE contender is preparing hard to compete in the PRIDE Middleweight Grand Prix, likely to be held later this year, and told FCF he will come back better than ever.
- According to the Brazilian NHB press, as reported by Tatame magazine, PRIDE veteran and Jiu-Jitsu black belt Allan Goes is now back in Brazil after a long stay in the USA. Goes is now living and training in Rio de Janeiro, and expects to be back in PRIDE during the first half of 2003. In addition, Allan is reportedly under consideration to appear in the next UCC, with rumors including Jeremy Horn as an opponent. There’s also a possibility that he may fight in the next MECA as well.