From:graciemag.com

Photos: personal archives

A duo always at the top of the winners’ stand at major Jiu-Jitsu competitions, Guilherme and Rafael Mendes forged ahead in the world tour and the last stop was Hawaii.

“We just got home from there, our last trip of the year, and now we’ll continue our training for the European Open,” Guilherme tells GRACIEMAG.com.

“It was a great trip, Hawaii is paradise! We only stayed there for four days so as not to break our rhythm in training, but we made the most of it. We climbed mountains, saw all kinds of beaches, watch the surfers at Pipeline, dived in a cage surrounded by sharks,” he adds.

Seminar for BJ, family and friends

Furthermore, the Atos black belts conducted a seminar exclusively for the greatest fighter on the archipelago.

“We had the pleasure of being invited to teach a private seminar for BJ Penn and his brothers. It was awesome because we got to meet his family and we were really well received,” says Raphael.

The fighters are celebrating the success of the 2010 season, but are already aiming their efforts at keeping it up in the coming year.

“Thank God, we had a really great year, we won the European Open, Brazilian Nationals, World Pro tryouts, the World Pro. Rafael won the Worlds at featherweight and thus has become world champion at every belt. To wrap things up, we won the Rickson Cup in Japan, so it was a victory-filled year, with lots of training and lots of dedication. We haven’t stopped training since the Worlds. We’re on pace, now we just have to iron out some details for the European Open. We’re not even going to stop on Christmas now New Year’s, we want to get there 100%,” warns Gui.

“Next year we want more. We’re going to train a lot because we need to outdo ourselves every year. We’ll keep competing in all the tournaments and, according to the way we planned it, we’ll do what we did in the other belts, competing in the same featherweight division as each other,” he adds.

“We had the pleasure of traveling to a number of places around the world teaching Jiu-Jitsu, our techniques, and training methods. We went to Canada, Panama, Turkey, Switzerland, Morocco, Japan, and Hawaii. The students really enjoy our way of teaching and our seminars, thank God, have been a hit. We always dreamed of being successful, whether as athletes or as teachers, so it fills us with joy,” he says.

“We want to take the opportunity to thank our training partners, they’re the ones responsible for each victory. To Guto Campos, who is leading training, and to our sponsors. We wish everyone a merry Christmas and happy New Year, and may God illuminate our path even more in 2011,” say the submission wizards in closing.

Do as the Mendes’ do and participate at the European Open in Lisbon. For further information and to sign up, click here.