Young, Braulio & Carl
Young is one of the worldÕs most renowned and sought after martial artists; always
eager to expand and adapt new training principles, Rick has travelled the globe
to train with best, including Dan Inosanto, Erik Paulson, Rickson Gracie and Rigan
Machado. Having been bitten by the BJJ bug, Rick has been busy training and competing
at the grand old age of 42 and has since been awarded his brown belt from Mauricao
Gomes. Rick brings to the table years of training with the very best and this
can only be of benefit for the GBUK organisation and I had the pleasure of his
company and support at the recent Braulio Estima seminar in Bolton, with Rick
travelling down from Edinburgh just to trainÉÉÉÉ.. It gives me great pleasure
in bringing you the Rick Young Interview.
Fisher: ItÕs a great pleasure and privilege having you down on the mats in Bolton
supporting the seminar, was it worth the trip?
Young : Thanks a lot Carl, itÕs great to be here, IÕve enjoyed myself a lot. IÕve
been training with Braulio since last November and am now making the effort to
train with him as much as I can and thatÕs why I came down.
Fisher: What do you think of the club?
Rick Young : I really like it, I like gyms that have a good atmosphere, I like
the old pictures on the walls and the pictures on the roof and the list of world
and Olympic champions on the wall, it has tradition and history.
Fisher: When did you start on the BJJ path?
Rick Young : It was about July Õ89, I met Erik Paulson in North Carolina and he
told me about a guy called Rickson Gracie and not many people had heard of him
then, so I went to LA and met Rickson and had a private with Royce which was at
the house, they didnÕt have the Torrance Academy then, it was in the garage. I
went there to train with Rickson with Paul Vunak and Rickson took all the classes
and he was phenomenal, I canÕt measure how good he is as I couldnÕt touch him.
In about Õ95, Dan started training with the Machados so I ended up training with
Rigan, John and JJ and I received my blue from him in about Õ97 and I never really
saw Rigan after that whenever I went back. My training in BJJ was kind of sporadic
after that, I was mainly training Judo with Billy Cusack and Mark Preston, then
I met Mauricao and he switched me back on to the BJJ, he didnÕt hold anything
back he was technically brilliant and I made four trips to Brazil since then and
am under Mauricao and proud to be part of Gracie Barra.
Fisher: When did you get the brown belt?
Young : Last year, I got my purple the year before; what happened is IÕd been
a blue for a while and Mauricao didnÕt want to step on anybodyÕs toes, but I hadnÕt
seen Rigan for a while and I was training a lot with Mauricao and I ended up with
the purple belt and I got the brown last year at the Mundials in Rio. The brown
belts a great thing, but to be honest I still think of myself as a white belt,
IÕm always learning and trying new things and I think there are a lot of brown
belts out there at a better technical level than myself.
Fisher: Regards the academy in Edinburgh, whatÕs on offer Rick?
Young : WeÕre based in Leith on the port side of Edinburgh and I teach Muay Thai,
JKD, Kali, Filipino martial arts and BJJ and no gi classes, as well as basic kickboxing.
ItÕs been there for three and a half years and if anyone wants to travel to the
club from this area they are most welcome, they can train for free.
Fisher: Scotland is one of the few places in the UK I have not trained at; whatÕs
the BJJ scene like up there?
Young : ThereÕs another Brazilian brown belt called Ronaldo whoÕs just arrived
and I think Royce Gracie has some guys as well, IÕm sure they train in Glasgow.
There are other guys that train around the areas but I donÕt think theyÕre affiliated
Fisher: Are you competing this year?
Young : Yes, the Pan Ams in three weeks and of course the Mundials in August so
IÕll be out in Brazil training with Mauricao to get myself ready.
Fisher: Braulio submitted everyone at the end of the session, taking out all the
big guys with ease, there were some tough guys there today. What is it that you
think set him apart from the rest of us, you know we train three four times a
week and think Ôyeah IÕm getting goodÕ and then Braulio comes along and ÔbamÕ
Young : I think itÕs technology; number one youÕre training in an art thatÕs truly
evolved, itÕs like someone firing a hand gun and the other guy has a machine gun
you know. Better ammunition to use when sparring, the guys a naturally trained
athlete, a motivated man who trains hard and trains with the best in the world.
Put those together and you cannot help but be the best. You go to Gracie Barra
at 9am and when I went it in in the morning I counted out six world champions
on the mats that was in the morning. I rolled with Roleta for fifty minutes and
itÕs like ÔwowÕ. When youÕre surrounded with quality like this you canÕt help
but elevate yourself and the problem in the UK is that this level of quality isnÕt
there yet, but once this base gets here we will progress. ItÕs like the Judo with
the Japanese dominating the world and then Geesink beat a Japanese in Õ61 and
then B J Penn beat a black belt in Brazil itÕs kind of opened the floodgates.
In another ten years there will be a massive change thanks to the work of Roger,
Felipe, Braulio, Mauricao, Atalla, Roger Brooking and the quality levels will
rise. If you keep getting Braulio up once a month and the others at different
times youÕre being touched by excellence so you canÕt go wrong.
Fisher: Rick, your mealÕs arrived, IÕll leave you in peace; thanks again for the
support and interview.
Rick Young : Cheers Carl, itÕs been a pleasure.