Gil Urias’s Karate organization, Team Gipsy, is one of the top pro teams in the country and has produced some of the most talented fighters in the country. Years ago, he joined the martial arts competition circuits and has lately produced the Gipsy Open Karate Championships. He has hosted some of the most prestigious events in the last decade. Combined with his bevy of legendary martial arts competitors he has made his events some of the best competition in the country. This year’s TKO Organization’s July 30th, 2022 Gipsy Open Karate tournament was held at the Lyndon B Johnson High School in Austin, Texas.
The event started at 9 Am with an army of euthanasic youth competition. The usual schedule for a TKO event follows a uniform schedule and that’s one of the things I like about these NBL type events. The facts are many of the champions from the NBL have found a new home in the TKO as Wayne Nguyen is one of the NBL’s greatest world champions. He has managed to attract the former SKI/NBL kids and adults like a pied piper of talented competitors including myself. Now I’m not saying there the same as the NBL but close enough for me.
In attendance was Tony Kattengil head of “The League World Championships” Tony has recently moved from California to Austin, Texas. Tony was overheard saying “no I’m not from Texas but I got here as fast as I could… Lol. I was kind of hoping he would also move “The League World Championships’ here to Texas. I think Texas has the strongest Sport Karate organizations in the country and as such could easily support a spectacular event like it.
Along with the many great competitors was an army of amazing parents who must spend countless hours and vast sums of money so these youth competitors can be champions and follow a lifestyle of fitness and success. These parents must be commended for their support of these events and their children.
The whole tournament ran thru and with so many competitors went over time not because of lack of judges or rings but because there were a lot of competitors. Another time consuming issue was big under belt Grand Championships. The black belt grand championships ran consecutive with the under black belt grand championships. But for those who waited, it was well worth a little extra time.
The black belt grand championships were a who’s who of the best in Texas and all were amazing competitors. The women’s black belt sparring grand champion ended up being Alyssa Guillen. Large men’s black belt sparring divisions culminated in championships that were a showdown between Titans of the fight game. After almost an hour of great and professional world class fights, Tyce Talbott ended up as the 2022 men’s sparring grand champion. The Junior black belt forms grand champion was Phillip Brumme. The black belt adult forms grand champion was the amazing and as of late undefeatable, Christina Subonj.
** A special thanks goes to the great men’s forms champion Robert Wilcox for helping me, Johnnie Murphy and Texas Sport Karate with this article. Robert Wilcox also won the incredible and tough men’s black belt traditional forms division.