My past 10 days in Italy were very productive, and besides the seminars and classes, I could follow the RGC squad in two competitions. After the great success last week in Livorno (read post below), we came down to Roma to participate in the III Roma BJJ Challenge.
A very well run tournament by Federico Tisi with help from Andrea Baggio and the Italian Connection, the cup had 150 people fighting BJJ under standard international rules, the structure was good for the numbers, the referees did very well overall, with only minor mistakes and I did not see any bias. All refs are active competitors and this can only be good for the growth of the sport in Italy.
Only to complain is the weather, it was really hot and the gymnasium felt like a greenhouse, making it difficult for the athletes to perform their best in that conditions. A place with better ventilation would do for next years, as in late May chances are that will often be hot in Italy.
Our team surely stole the show this year, taking the two most important trophies, the Open Divisions on the purple and blue belts.
Matteo Calamandrei took gold in the Open Purple belt. Without opponents in his weight division, Matteo won two matches showing takedowns and good control of both opponents, winning the most important division at stake (there were not brown and black belt divisions on this tournament).
Ion Condei and Ricardo Bennati (Sport Goofy), training partners, took gold and silver in the blue belt Open Division, as well as under 88kgs.
Besides that we added more experience to the other fighters, setting the pace for the next season.
Purple Belt Open Division:
1st place – Matteo Calamandrei
Blue Belt Open Division:
1st place – Ion Condei
2nd place – Ricardo Bennati
Blue Belt under 88kgs:
1st place – Ricardo Bennati
2nd place – Ion Condei
White Belt under 100.5 kgs:
3rd place – Giacomo Pani
White Belt under 70kgs
3rd place – Fabio Tondolo