Spartan MMA students claim medals at Australasian 'The Gathering Brazilian jiu jitsu' championships

SPARTAN SUCCESS: Spartan MMA members (left to right) Chris Smith, Lachlan Dartm, Alish Smith, Jackson Fary, Melanie Mason, coach Tra-ill Dowie, David Gibb and Sam McCarthy. Picture: Susie Giese
SPARTAN SUCCESS: Spartan MMA members (left to right) Chris Smith, Lachlan Dartm, Alish Smith, Jackson Fary, Melanie Mason, coach Tra-ill Dowie, David Gibb and Sam McCarthy. Picture: Susie Giese

WARRNAMBOOL’S Spartan Mixed Martial Arts gym’s reputation is growing after claiming a swag of medals at the Gathering Brazilian jiu jitsu championships.

The gym brought home five gold, two silver and four bronze medals from the Australasian championships, with strong performances across the board from the group of eight it took to the event.

The in-form Ailish Smith won gold medals in her weight and age categories, as well as in the open category, which includes all weight groups.

Melanie Mason won an open gold medal and a silver in her weight and age.

Sam McCarthy claimed gold in his weight class and bronze in the open, while Lachlan Dart in his weight class, Gavin McKenzie in his age and weight class and Chris Smith in his weight class all won bronze.

Spartan coach David Gibb, who claimed an open gold and weight class silver of his own, said it was a strong return from the club, which is still only young.

“I’m really proud,” he said. “Particularly being an Australasian championship, so it’s all of Australia, all of New Zealand and some islands as well.

“We went last year, to the same competition, and we had some success then, but this year we took more competitors and had more success.

“Everyone just did really well. It’s a really competitive tournament.

“Just being still a young Brazilian jiu jitsu club, particularly in the south-west and Warrnambool, it just means we’re building and growing good athletes down here.”