Photo (left to right): Justin Rader (black belt), Robert Harper (black belt), Rafael Lovato Jr. (black belt), Rafael Lovato Sr. (black belt), Travis Serna (black belt), and Jesse Sunderman (brown belt).
OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma — On Saturday, January 21st, Lovato's Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma had a very special belt promotion ceremony that literally doubled the number of Black Belts gracing the Sooner State's premier Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Submission Grappling academy.
Before Rafael Lovato Jr. made the big announcement on who would be joining him, his father, and Justin Rader in the presitigous "black belt club" at their academy, they first promoted four new Blue Belts: Gonzalo Bruckman, Austin Adkins, Josh Hatley, and Cole Osbourne. Next came the promotion of his newest Brown Belt: Jesse Sunderman. The brown belt was well deserved as many people in the south became familiar with Sunderman, after he won the Advanced division at the UFC Fan Expo in Houston, Texas last fall.
Then came the moment everyone was waiting for as Lovato Jr. promoted his two new Black Belts: Travis Serna and Robert Harper. Serna and Harper have both dedicated a decade of their lives to Jiu-Jitsu and their instructor couldn't have been more proud of his student's achievements.
Lovato Jr. would elaborate, "I couldn't ask for two more deserving warriors to promote to Black Belt! I have now promoted four people to the rank of Black Belt! On top of all that (the two Black Belts, Brown Belt, and four Blue Belts), there were people who received their Yellow, Orange, and Green Belts (in his kid's program). I gave out a bunch of stripes to some blue, purple, and brown belts and we had a killer training session for over two hours at the end of it all! I'm so happy and proud of everyone! Now you will find five Black Belts at my academy and a killer squad of lower belts. This is going to be an amazing year for Lovato Jiu-Jitsu!