It was a blast. Too bad it didn’t last longer.
That’s how Brian Gibbons was feeling after winning top spot in the brown belt, 90-kilogram weight class at the 2018 provincial judo championships.
Gibbons defeated Jamie Suley of Gander in a best-of-three showdown by winning two straight matches at the Power Plex in St. John’s over the weekend.
The 28-year-old Gander native, who is an X-ray technician at Western Health in Corner Brook, won the first match handily, putting a stop to the fight in a matter of seconds with a successful ura-nage (backwards facing throw).
He had a tougher time in his second match with Suley trying to get even, but he was able to win the match by two half points to seal the deal.
“It was exciting, but I would have liked to fight the third match because it was fun,” Gibbons said with a hearty chuckle.
Gibbons has been involved in judo for 13 years and also enjoys being active in Brazillian jujitsui. It’s his favourite thing to do when he’s got free time on his hands so he doesn’t see himself slowing down anytime soon because he wants to be upgraded to black belt.
“I won’t give it up. Until my body doesn’t want to do it,” he said.
Earning his black belt is something he figures will happen over the next couple of years because he’s willing to do what it takes. He’s been motivated by seeing others do it and he had that chance over the weekend when he was inspired by Jason Bolton finally getting upgraded to black belt 35 years after he got started with the sport.
A black belt is obtainable through a points system where a judoka gets so many points for competing in certain events along the way so Gibbons is confident he’s on track to another great day in his judo development.