Travelling Teams: Peter Thompson, GFTeam Glasgow
With a taste for BJJ24.7 competition following last month’s hugely popular Scottish
Open. Peter Thompson, hailing from Port Glasgow, Scotland, took it upon himself to
register for the next possible event, meaning he was heading south of the border to
compete in Manchester Open.
Just one of many travelling competitors at BJJ24.7 events, Peter tells us his story,
where he came from and where he’s going in his Jiu-Jitsu journey.
“I have been training since the beginning of 2013 out of Grappling Fight Team or GF
Team for short. My own coach is Purple belt Chris Carmichael who travelled,
coached and trained with Fabio Coringa Nunes at GF Australia in 2014. The head of
GF team is Julio Cesar Pereira. His students include multiple world champion
Leaving Scotland on Friday, Peter slung his competition gear over his shoulder and
hit the road. He explored every possible angle to ensure he could get to the event for
as cheap as possible, highlighting that with proper planning, all BJJ24.7 are
accessible, even those with a small budget.
Furthermore, he travelled alone and fought with nobody in his corner on the day.
“Nothing glamorous about the trip down!” Peter chuckled. “The cheapest way
possible was a MegaBus from Glasgow to Manchester during the day on Friday. I
stayed over at the Britannia hotel nearby the venue as the Ibis hotel even closer was
sold out! Bus, hotel, comp fees all came to 120 pounds.
But why bother when there are closer competitions, well, you can come away with
much more than a medal for your efforts, as Peter explained:
“I enjoy competing and I have travelled to train previously. I thought I’d combine the
two and try and another type, location, different fighters and ultimately a different
weight category. Manchester was not too far so I thought why not, I am glad I did to
be fair. I will be returning I am sure of that.
I’ll be keeping an eye on the schedule and making sure I get to a few, maybe not on
my own this time!”
So how did he get on? Peter did well, very well in fact and proudly left the Sugden
Sports Centre with three medals around his neck on the day, representing his team
in the best way he could and his two golds and a silver show that.
“I went to a higher weight class than usual at under 94kg for Gi and over 94kg for No
Gi. I managed silver in No Gi. I won gold in Absolute No Gi and gold in under 94kg
Gi. All in all it was a good day and well worth the trip.
I am a white belt in the Gi. Manchester was only second no -gi competition. I do not
think any competitor gets anywhere without team mates, training partners and
coaches. We have a small, close knit team at GF Team West of Scotland and
wouldn’t be anywhere without them.”