It’s a been a huge couple of weeks for GroundControl. On February 11 Shayne Young was back in the cage fighting to keep his undefeated record intact. After weathering a storm in the first round Shane fought back hard to take out the second and show real dominance in the third to win a unanimous decision. The win a testament to his composure under fire and exceptional conditioning. This brings Shane’s undefeated run to 5 straight victories.
Then on February 18 we had BJJ 4th degree black belt and our head coach, John Will back in the house. John once again showed why he is the best at what he does, taking us through a range of not just new techniques but as always training concepts that can be applied on and off the mat.
John’s visits are also a fantastic opportunity to recognize the progress folks have made and award some well deserved ranks. And this time round there were a bunch! Going to the highly regarded rank of blue belt were Shane Young, David Grant, Matthew Tusa and Bryan McKenzie. All of whom have shown outstanding dedication to their training and have developed some formidable skills.
Speaking of formidable it was an absolute pleasure to have John award the rank of purple belt to Jason Kelly. Jase has been a central part of the culture at GroundControl for many years now and his dedication to training is simply awesome. A big man who has the rare ability to roll heavy or light with a thorough understanding of BJJ’s technical landscape this significant rank could not be more deserved.
The injection of more blue and purple into the auckland mat will give another boost of learning to everybody there, and we’re excited about the future prospects.
As if that wasn’t enough, the following day in Hamilton John also awarded the purple to Errol Watson. Errol, assisted by Travis, has been leading the charge in BJJ development in Hamilton for many years now, and it’s fantastic to see him rewarded with this grade. Well done my friend.
There’s a lot more to come this year, with ICNZ and several grappling comps just a few weeks away, more seminars from John to come, and the Will/Machado NZ nationals in the planning stages. 2012 is shaping up to be even bigger than 2011 was.