2007 Pan American Championships

Date: March 30 -  April 1, 2007
Place: Los Angelos, CA

Huge tournament this year, something like 1500 competitors from all over the world. 

I went with my friend, Brad Hatcher and his wife Amanda. 

Many thanks to Brad and Amanda for supporting and helping me during my matches!! Thanks Guys!

Also thanks to my friend Chewy Ybarra, who cheered my on during my matches.

Congrats Chewy on winning the Senior 3 Open Weight Brown Belt division!!

And of course, thanks to my teacher Soneca.

For the first time ever, the Pan American championships had a no-gi division.
But, there were no age divisions, so I decided to compete with the young guys.
I drew the brown belt who got second overall (he almost won the final).
I didn't win this match, but I fought hard for the full time.
He won on points. Below are some pictures from this match

Here are some pictures from my gi matches

The match below was against last years brown belt Pan American Champion.

He scored a takedown, but then I took his back and won.

I lost in the final to Doug McGiffin (Who was also a former Pan Am Champ). 

Doug beat me in this match 2-0

Congrats Doug for your well deserved win!!

2007 Pan American Championship Results

Brown Lightweight Senior 2 


First: Doug McGiffin, Yamasaki Academy
Second: Richard Sparks, Soneca BJJ
Third: John Trujillo, Fabio Santos
Third: Vince Mattei, Gracie Barra Niagara

Brad also competed. He won the Pan Ams last year.
He fought a black belt from Atlanta.
He had to go down a division in age to get a match.
Kudos to Brad for stepping up to fight!

Brad's Opponent got a takedown, and tried to maintain position.

Brad tries to set up the collar choke.

Toward the end of the match, Brad's opponent tried a footlock.
Brad defended, and in the transition came on top and took his opponent's back.
Unfortunately, this happened with only a few seconds left, and Brad did not
have time to get his hooks in and score. A few more seconds and Brad
could have won the match. But he fought very well!

Marcello Garcia fought and won in the adult middle weight black belt divison!

Kron Gracie (Son of Rickson Gracie) won the adult brown belt division

Rickson and Kron celebrate his win.

My friend Amal Eason also won the masters black belt open weight division!
Way to go Amal!!

I got my referree certification at a clinic the day before the tournament.
Professor Alvaro Mansor, Director of referrees for the CBJJ

My friend John "Papa John" Gorman.

The turtle master, Edwardo Telles!

Saulo!  Saulo came late, and they were out of shorts for the no-gi division.
So, I loaned Saulo my shorts, and he won the black belt division.
That's right, my shorts won the black belt division.

Jake McKee, owner of Budo videos. Jake sells our DVDs.

The People's Knee (Dave Jacobs) broke my camera.
Three pictures of him and all of them were blurry.

Kid Pelligro

Saulo and Xande take care of some important business.


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