What a difference a year can make.
In 2010 Felipe Pena, a fledgling purple belt didn’t make it onto a podium at the Worlds.
In 2011 the tune he was listening to as he made his approach was metal on metal.
With two gold medals dangling from his neck, the Minas Gerais native didn’t make the slightest attempt to disguise his joy.
A student of Draculino and Rômulo Barral, the 19-year-old had ten matches at the 2011 Worlds and submitted seven of his opponents.
In the absolute he overcame Marcus Sosa, the same one he faced in the medium heavyweight decider.
What made the difference? “Mat time,” replied Felipe.
The two golds also marked a farewell for Pena.
Asked whether he would come back as a brown belt, “I don’t know,” was his response.
Draculino and Barral cleared up any doubts by fastening a brand new brown belt around his waist.