One group of competitors in particular drew a lot of attention from those attending the 2011 World Championship.
Decked out in yellow shirts with a map of their nation emblazoned on it, thirty Mongolians set an example in dedication to the gentle art and the desire to compete.
The competitors from the Asian nation faced an almost 10,000-kilometer flight from Ulanbattar to Long Beach.
They had just two layovers along the way, in Chicago and San Francisco, before reaching their final destination.
In their luggage they brought with them great desire to compete and learn.
Besides the distance, they face a dearth of Jiu-Jitsu schools in their country of birth.
“Truth is, we’re all judo practitioners,” said one of the integrants of the team.
Among the thirty members of the committee, the only belt color missing was black belt, but all the other belts were represented.
And on the flight home they’ll carry some excess weight in their luggage, with the gis and souvenirs they picked up adding to their medals.
Still early afternoon, when the Blog spoke with them, they had already reaped two gold and two silver medals.
Stay tuned to complete coverage of the 2011 Worlds here on the GRACIEMAG at the Worlds Blog.