Bermuda Combat Club Holds Grand Opening

August 14, 2017

The Bermuda Combat Club Ltd. held their grand opening Saturday [Aug 12] featuring Bermuda’s first ever Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Submission Grappling tournament titled: “Bermuda Combat Club Submission Grappling Championship” and showcased 16 out of its 35 members’ men & women ranging from 115lbs to 208lbs.

Mark Prior, CEO of Bermuda Combat Club Ltd. and Founder and Assistant Head Coach of BTT Bermuda addresses those in attendance during the Bermuda Combat Club grand opening

Bermuda Combat Club opening August 13 2017 (1)

Attendees witnessed for the first time live Submission Grappling fights which resulted in Theresa Andrade becoming the Women’s Champion in the Absolute division [no maximum weight limit], Shadaunte Tucker becoming the Featherweight Champion, Chad Nelmes becoming the Middleweight Champion, and Jason Trott becoming the Heavyweight Champion.

After fighting through their respective divisions, the champions then squared off to determine the Absolute Champion – a unique feature to grappling competitions. Chad Nelmes, submitted Jason Trott via arm triangle to be crowned the Absolute Champion.

Mark Prior, CEO of Bermuda Combat Club Ltd. and Founder and Assistant Head Coach of BTT Bermuda, said: “The overwhelming support from the community is appreciated from the bottom of my heart. This is a passion of mine that required a lot of sacrifice and risk, but it’s something I love and I’m thankful to be able to share my passion with my country and have it received well.”

Competitors of Brazilian Top Team Bermuda Stand together with Head Coach 3rd Degree Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt Prof. Marcos Túlio [Black Shirt] and Asst. Head Coach Mark Prior [Blue Shirt]


Describing the importance of the business and Martial Arts Team, Mr. Prior explained: “We want to become a resource for organizations and charities and show how they can benefit from our experience and services never before seen in Bermuda.

“From our unique family BJJ class that focuses on the bond between parent and child, to the private group corporate training and special programs designed to empower vulnerable persons – we are Bermuda’s first world-class resource for all of those.

“And to already have the overwhelming support from the community, Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, and also both the PLP and the OBA – it just shows we are on the right track and we are most grateful for the opportunity we’ve had to prove it.”

Chad Nelmes submits his way through the Middleweight division and Absolute division enroute to becoming the Absolute Champion of the Bermuda Combat Club Submission Grappling Championship


The event went on from 1pm to 4pm and had the venue packed members of the public and special guests who attended and gave remarks included:

  • Walter H. Roban, Acting Premier
  • Jahmal Simmons, Minister of Economic Development and Tourism
  • Zane DeSilva, Minister of Social Development & Sport
  • Erica Smith, Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, Executive Director

A free draw was had with prizes including:

  • A free 45 min Personal Training session with Head Coach Prof. Marcos Túlio [worth $65] in either Mixed Martial Arts, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai or Boxing
  • 10% off a Joseph A Pereira Mobile Massage Therapist massage
  • 10% off a custom mouth guard from FAME Custom Mouthguards
  • A free rash guard
  • A free BTT Baseball Cap

The ribbon is cut at the Bermuda Combat Club with fight team members of BTT Bermuda and special guests Walter H. Roban, Acting Premier, Jahmal S. Simmons, Minister of Economic Development and Tourism, Zane De Silva, Minister of Social Development & Sport and Erica Smith, Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, Executive Director

Bermuda Combat Club opening August 13 2017 (4)

Recently reuniting with his team, Brazilian Top Team, Mark hired an elite world-class Head Coach in 3rd Degree Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt Marcos Túlio. Prof. Túlio, is one of the top students of former UFC Middleweight Champion and a Brazilian Top Team Founder, Murilo Bustamante.

Prof. Túlio coached professional fighters most of his life for professional fight teams like American Top Team, Blackzillians, and others in North America and Brazil. Túlio himself, is an active professional fighter and his pupils are world famous pro fighters now in the Ultimate Fighting Championship [UFC] and other MMA leagues, like Alistair Overeem, Rashad Evans, Melvin Guillard.

“This is world-class training and it’s putting Bermuda on the world stage. What makes us authentic is that our lineage is directly from the creation of BJJ, and has been tried and tested at the highest levels of unarmed combat around the world.

Mark Prior, CEO of Bermuda Combat Club Ltd. and Founder and Assistant Head Coach of BTT Bermuda, gifts a team white belt rash guard to special guests Walter H. Roban, Acting Premier

Bermuda Combat Club opening August 13 2017 (5)

“Anyone can easily prove who we are and see what we do works at the highest level – from the very beginning with Mitsuyo Maeda to Carlos Gracie, onto Carlson Gracie, then to Murilo Bustamante and to my instructor, Túlio.”

“What makes us different is that we aren’t old-school traditional Martial Arts – this is modern Martial Arts. Our techniques aren’t secret, our training methods focus on technique and conditioning, we explain, demonstrate and practice before we test each technique in live rolling – or sparring – with members of all sizes, shapes, athletic abilities and levels of aggression.”

Mr. Prior explained Brazilian Top Team Bermuda prepares its members for the typical altercation they could find themselves in on the street against the average stronger and bigger aggressor, while also preparing and training them to protect themselves from opponents who know how to fight in competition.

“Since the early days of the UFC when it was style vs style in unarmed combat – the world saw exactly how Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu matched up against other styles. Brazilian Top Team is known for being one of the best, and we prove it on the mats daily here at BTT Bermuda.”

Mr. Prior started Bermuda Combat Club Ltd. and was the first to introduce BJJ and MMA to Bermuda by bringing down professional fighters for seminars, as a new tourism initiative that saw collaboration with local hotels and businesses that gave exclusive discounts to participants.

Their Anti-Bullying Campaign was first held at Cedarbridge Academy where former UFC Featherweight contender Mark Hominick spoke to students about being bullied himself and the importance of pursuing an education while competing professionally as a Mixed Martial Artist.

For more information on classes, private training, corporate and charity collaborations contact Mark Prior at Facebook and Instagram.

- Photos by Jevaughn Simons & Peter Aldrich

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  1. PSJ says:

    Great stuff! Congrats to my bro for becoming the Heavyweight Champion.