A few years ago, Chris Tran was just a stubborn kid who only ate bagels (true story) but had entered training to become a Jiu Jitsu competitor. He cleaned up the mats from the start, winning most of his matches from the beginning, but after a fateful day in June, he disappeared as quickly as he had arrived.
We are glad to report that Short Round has returned and made his first post-Worlds showing.
Chris left the Academy Friday afternoon with the kids/teens Medal Chasers from Camp Springs to head to Morristown, New Jersey with plans to take on four separate divisions; teens gi and no-gi and adult Blue Belt gi and Adult Intermediate no-gi.
While Chris trains daily in the Crazy 88 competitor practices with the adults, he is not so himself. Only sixteen, and prohibited from fighting adult divisions in the International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) until 2013, Chris set his sights this weekend on the Grapplers Quest Adult blue belts and intermediate no-gi competitors. “You don’t need hair on your chest to win adult division,” Chris said.
Chris’ friends and role models from Camp Springs are all powerhouse competitors and often fight and usually win Adult divisions well before they can even get drivers’ licenses. Thus, Chris was in good company traveling with this elite young group – Master Donnie at the helm.
Chris tries to push himself constantly, especially in the months immediately after the Mundials, which is a time often used to re-calibrate and make game plan adjustments for the year to come.
Chris began his Grapplers Quest weekend in the deep end of the pool with adult intermediate no-gi. Chris had three solid matches (and won them all). Chris won the first match by an advantage point, second 5-0, and he submitted his final opponent with a kimura from his guard. Gold Medal #1 – check!
Sunday Chris changed gears and began the day with the teen blue-belt and teen advanced no gi divisions. In teen no gi, Chris won his first match 5-0, and his second match by rear naked choke. In the gi division, Chris fought the same opponent from the finals of no gi two more times and beat him two more times; once in a points match (17-0), and then in the finals with a brabo choke. Gold Medals #2 & #3!
As he planned, Chris ended his reign with the adult blue belt division. Chris submitted his first opponent with an arm lock and won in the finals by a staggering 17-4. GOLD Medal #4 – a clean sweep!
These are the weekends that Chris lives for. Chris spends most, if not all, of his time at Crazy 88 BJJ training, drilling, doing chores, watching film, and taking it all in. Clearly his efforts are paying off. Competition Jiu Jitsu has afforded Chris the opportunity to travel the United States with his friends and team. Chris attributes his success to “the process” created by Master Julius, Master Lloyd, and Master Donnie as well as to his dad for driving him to and from the school every day and night. “Thanks Dad,” Chris said after collecting his medals.
While Chris’ weekend was great, he still has a lot of work to do and he will continue to revolve his goals around the ultimate goal to be an adult IBJJF world champ. Keep an eye on “Sourpatch” Tran as chases his medals all the way to the Mundial 2013.