Royler Gracie - 1st Ever Fighter To Win Three Consecutive ADCC World Championships

Royler Gracie - 1st Ever Fighter To Win Three Consecutive ADCC World Championships

1. Royler Gracie’s Details

Name Royler Gracie
Pro MMA Record 5-5-1
Nickname N/A
Date of Birth December 6, 1965
Nationality Brazilian/ American
Born Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Height 5’7”
Weight 160 lb
Stance Brazilian Jiu-jitsu
Last fight September 14, 2011
Weight Class Featherweight/ Lightweight
Rank 7th Degree Coral Belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu under Rolker Gracie and Rickson Gracie
Career Disclosed Earnings $5 Million Approx
Fought out of Gracie Humaita Academy
College/University N/A
Trainer/Coach Helio Gracie
Team Gracie Humaita/ Victory MMA
Foundation Style N/A
Lineage Mitsuyo Maeda -> Carlos Gracie -> Helio Gracie -> Royler Gracie

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2. Royler Gracie’s Biography

“Everyone should compete at least once.”

(Royler Gracie)

Royler, born on December 6, 1965, in the Gracie family, is a legendary jiu-jitsu professional fighter. He is the son of the Grandmaster and founder of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, Helio Gracie, and brother of Royce and Rickson Gracie.

Royler is a 7th-Degree red/black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He is one of the two fighters in the world to win the gold standard of submission grappling titles - ADCC World Championship, three times in a row, and is currently the director of Gracie Humaita Academy.

2.1. Royler Gracie’s Early life and Amateur Fighting 

Royler Gracie was born on December 6, 1965, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

At the age of three, he was taught by his father Helio Gracie in a playful manner. He played soccer when in school but as he grew up, his interest in martial arts stayed and the rest faded away.

At the age of seven, he started training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with his cousin Rolls Gracie. 

Royler claims that his childhood was the most prestigious period of his life.

When he was in Botafogo, Rio de Janeiro, Royler used to go to Copacabana by bus with his brothers Rolker and Royce to train at his cousin’s academy. The classes took place from 5 pm to 6 pm every day, but he often used to stay there longer to watch the adult training classes, observing their methods and questioning professionals about them.

Rolls Gracie the Cheerleader

Rolls Gracie boosted Royler’s confidence, encouraging him throughout his childhood. He instilled a belief in Royler that he could be the next BJJ champion in the Gracie legacy.

Unfortunately, on June 6, 1983, Rolls passed away in a tragic accident at the age of 31. It left Royler in shock but did not stop him from growing better in BJJ.

Royler Gracie once said:

“There is an era before and another one after Rolls.”

Royler Gracie Under the Supervision of his Father

Soon after, Royler shifted his training to Rickson Gracie’s camp where he started training under his father. 

His brothers and father pushed him to take the competitions more seriously as he was growing up and thinking of pursuing his BJJ career professionally. Helio Gracie would often offer him to fight, saying, “if you win , I will give you $5. If you lose, I will give you $10.” At first, it was difficult for Royler to comprehend his father’s intentions, but later understood that it was his father’s way of keeping Royler from feeling pressured. 

2.2. Royler Gracie’s Remarkable Win Streak & an Unexpected Setback

After years of consistent training and determination, Royler became a formidable fighter. His achievements became supreme in submission grappling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, maintaining an undefeated record for several years. 

Until in 1987, at the Copa Cantao Competition, he was defeated by De La Riva via sneaky guard where he lost the sweep.

In 1998, Royler competed against Ze Mario Sperry, a Super Heavyweight champion, defeating him via submission.

Gracie Humaita Academy

When Rickson moved to the USA, Royler took the responsibility of fulfilling Rickson's Gi students at the Gracie Humaita Academy. He took this responsibility seriously and pushed his students to reach perfection. Many well-known famous fighters were trained under Royler, such as Xande Ribeiro, Vinny Magalhaes, Saulo Ribeiro, and others.

Royler Gracie’s Constant Hard Work in Brazilian jiu-jitsu

Royler has always tried to improve his jiu-jitsu skills. He has trained in judo at two different clubs, Judo Team Sion and Clube de Regatas do Flamengo, learning different grappling forms to enhance his skillset.

In 1996, he started competing in Japanese martial arts competitions and earned a silver medal in the Judo Brazilian Nationals.

In 1997, Royler competed in the Open Weight Division of the World Championship. He fought in six matches to make it to the semifinals.

Royler faced Amaury Bittetti, where he tried to gain the advantage from a top position. Unforutnalte, Royler’s opponent overpowered him and lost the bout by two points. He got 3rd place in the Openweight Division Challenge.

2.3. Royler Gracie’s Mixed Martial Arts(MMA) Career

In the late 1990s, Royler decided to compete in Mixed martial arts and started training with Claudio Coelho to improve his skills. He mainly worked on improving his stand-up technique training, his coach being a great help in encouraging him to keep moving forward.

In 2000, Royler fought against Kazushi Sakuraba, a middleweight MMA fighter. Kazushi had a weight advantage of around 190 lbs. Royler was the first in the Gracie family to submit to the Japanese fighter, losing to a kimura lock in round 2.

In 2003, in the quarterfinals of the ADCC Tournament’s u 66 kg Division, Royler competed against Eddie Bravo. Eddie fought exceptionally well against Royler relying on submission techniques (triangle and sliding guard passes).

In 2010, Royler considered living between Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and San Diego, California. Royler decided to permanently move to the USA. He wanted to find a peaceful space where he could be more relaxed and surf on the beach more frequently. 

In March 2014, at Metamoris III, Royler had a rematch with Eddie Bravo in a submission-only competition. Despite the submission and groin stretch attempts, the match ended in a draw.

2.4. ADCC Championship History 

Royler has won three ADCC Championships in a row in 1999, 2000, and 2001. 

2.5. Hall of Fame 2022 Inductee

Royler earned himself a reputation for winning three consecutive times at the ADCC, the Pan-American Championships in 1997 and 1999, and the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) in 1996, 1997, 1998, and 1999 in the Absolute Division.

Royler has officially reached the ranks of the ADCC Hall of Fame.

2.6. Royler Gracie Published Books

Royler Gracie has co-written three instructional Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu books:

  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Theory and Practice
  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Submission Grappling Techniques
  • Gracie Submission Essentials: Grandmaster and Master Secrets of Finishing a Fight with his late father Helio Gracie

2.7. Royler Gracie’s Historic Fights

Royler Gracie vs Eddie Bravo

Royler Gracie suffered an unexpected defeat at the hands of inexperienced brown belt Eddie Bravo in the semifinals of the 2003 ADCC Championship. GRaie accepted defeat with grace and had another chance to redeem himself from the defeat in 2014 at the Metamoris 3 event. Though the fight ended in a draw, Royler Gracie, who had retired by this time, showcased excellent BJ skills and prowess and proved that he was one ofthe best.

Year Event Opponent  W/L/D Method  Stage  Weight Class Location
2014 Metamoris 2 Eddie Bravo Draw N/A SPF ABS Los Angeles, Claifornia

Royler Gracie vs Alexandre Soca

Royler Gracie confronted an equally talented grappler, Alexandre Soca, at the finals of 2000 ADCC Championship. The two fighters grappled for more than 15 minutes. After non-stop combat Royler Gracie managed to dominate his opponent. With sharp BJJ skills and fluid movements, Gracie won the prestigious ADCC Championship and bagged a gold medal.

Year Event Opponent  W/L/D Method  Stage  Weight Class Location
2000 ADCC Alexandre Soca Win Points 5x5 Final 66 kg Abu Dhabi

Royler Gracie vs Leonardo Vieira (Leozinho Vieira)

In 1999, Royler Gracie managed to secure his place at the IBJJF World Championship final. It was not an ordinary accomplishment as the 70 kg bracket was brimming with exceptional BJJ talent.

In the final bout, Gracie confronted Leonardo Vieira (Leozinho Vieira). The two fighters tried to submit each other but couldn’t. When the fight ended, the referee raised Royler Gracie’s arm and declared him the winner.

Year Event Opponent  W/L/D Method  Stage  Weight Class Location
1999 World Championship Leonardo Vieira Win Referee Decision Final 70 kg Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

2.8. Royler Gracie’s Championships and Accomplishments

  • 4x Gold Medalist at World Jiu-Jitsu Championship
  • 1x Bronze Medalist at World Jiu-Jitsu Championship
  • 3x Gold Medalist at ADCC World Championship
  • 2x Gold Medalist at Pan American Championship

3. Royler Gracie’s Main Achievements

  • World Champion (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999)
  • Pan American Champion (1997, 1999)
  • ADCC Champion (1999, 2000, 2001)

4. Royler Gracie’s Main Achievements (Belts)

Year Event Belt/Weight Position/Medal
2001 ADCC World Championship Black/-65Kg GoldGold_medel_Icon
2000 ADCC World Championship Black/-65Kg GoldGold_medel_Icon
1999 ADCC World Championship Black/-65Kg GoldGold_medel_Icon
1999 World Jiu-jitsu Championship Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon
1999 Pan American Championships Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon
1998 World Jiu-jitsu Championship Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon
1997 World Jiu-jitsu Championship Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon
1997 Pan American Championships Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon
1997 World Jiu-jitsu Championship Black/Absolute BronzeBronze_medel_Icon
1996 World Jiu-jitsu Championship Black/Featherweight GoldGold_medel_Icon

5. Royler Gracie’s Professional Record Breakdown

5.1. Mixed Martial Arts Fight Record

Professional Record Breakdown
11 Matches 5 Wins 5 Losses
By Knockout 0 2
By Submission 4 1
By Decision 1 2
By Advantages 0 0
By OT 0 0
By DQ 0 0
Draws 1

5.2. Royler Gracie’s Grappling Record 

Professional Record Breakdown
40 Matches 34 Wins 6 Losses
By Points 19 3
By Submission 10 2
By Decision 1 1
By Advantages 4 0
By OT 0 0
By DQ 0 0
Draw 0

5.3. Submission Methods W/L

Submission Methods 10 Wins 2 Losses
RNC 2 0

5.4. Royler Gracie’s Mixed Martial Arts Fight Record History

Year Event  Opponent W/L/D Method Round Weight Class
2011 Amazon Forest Combat 1 Masakatsu Ueda L Decision (split)  3  N/A
2006 K-1 Premium Dynamite!! Hideo Tokoro L Decision (unanimous)  3  N/A
2005 Hero's 3 Norifumi Yamamoto L KO (punch)  2 Lightweight Grand Prix
2005 Hero's 2 Koji Yoshida W Decision (majority)  2  N/A
2004 Rumble on the Rock Kazuyuki Miyata W Submission (triangle choke)  2  N/A
2004 K-1 MMA ROMANEX Genki Sudo L KO (punches)  1  N/A
2001 Deep – 1st Impact Takehiro Murahama Draw Draw  2  N/A
1999 Pride 8 Kazushi Sakuraba L Submission (Referee stoppage)  2 Royler demanded special rules:
No stand ups, no judges
1998 Pride 2 Yuhi Sano W Submission (armbar)  1  N/A
1996 Vale Tudo Japan Noboru Asahi W Submission (rear-naked choke)  1 Royler demanded special rules:
No strikes on ground
1996 Universal Vale Tudo Fighting 2 Ivan Lee W Submission (rear-naked choke)  1  N/A

5.5. Royler Gracie’s Grappling Record Breakdown

Year Event  Opponent W/L/D Method Stage Weight Class
2000 ADCC A. Hamlet W Pts: 10x0 SF 66KG
1994 Brasileiro Alexandre Soca W N/A F 70KG
1997 World Champ. Alexandre Soca W N/A SF 70KG
1999 ADCC Alexandre Soca W Leglock F 66KG
2000 ADCC Alexandre Soca W Pts: 5x0 F 66KG
2003 ADCC Alexandre Soca W Pts: 8x0 3PLC 66KG
1997 World Champ. Amaury Bitetti L Pts: 2x0 SF ABS
1997 World Champ. Arthur Ignarra W Points R2 ABS
2000 ADCC Baret Yoshida W Pts: 2x0 R1 66KG
2001 ADCC Baret Yoshida W Pts: 2x0 F 66KG
2003 ADCC Charles Pearson W RNC R1 66KG
1987 Copa Cantao De La Riva L Referee Decision NA NA
2003 ADCC Eddie Bravo L Triangle 4F 66KG
2014 Metamoris 3 Eddie Bravo D --- SPF ABS
2002 Night of Champions Henry Matamoros W Choke SPF ABS
2000 ADCC J. Wakabayashi W Pts: 22x0 4F 66KG
1998 World Champ. Joao Roque W Pts: 2x0 SF 70KG
1999 ADCC Joao Roque W Adv 4F 66KG
1999 ADCC Juan Valles W Triangle R1 66KG
1997 World Champ. Leo Dalla W Points 4F ABS
1997 Copacabana Leo Dalla W Choke from back SPF ABS
1999 World Champ. Leonardo Santos W Adv SF 70KG
1999 World Champ. Leonardo Vieira W Referee Decision F 70KG
1997 World Champ. Luis Amigo W Submission R1 70KG
1997 Copa Pele Marcio Feitosa L Pts: 2x0 SPF N/A
1998 Oscar de JJ Marcio Feitosa L Pts: 4x2 SPF 74KG
1996 World Champ. Marco Aurelio W Points 4F 70KG
1998 World Champ. Marcos Aurelio W N/A 4F 70KG
1999 Pan American Marcos Matta W Pts: 0x0, Adv F 70KG
1998 World Champ. Mario Sperry L Clock choke SF ABS
2001 ADCC Martin Brown W RNC R1 66KG
1999 ADCC Melchor M. W Pts: 12x0 SF 66KG
2001 ADCC Mike Cardosa W Straight ankle lock 4F 66KG
1997 World Champ. Octavio Couto W Submission 4F 70KG
1985 Vansport Cup Pascoal Duarte W Points F 68KG
2001 ADCC Robson Moura W Pts: 2x0 SF 66KG
1986 III Copa Company Unknown W Points F 64KG
1998 World Champ. Vinicius Cruz W Armbar R1 70KG
1996 World Champ. Vinicius Draculino W Points F 70KG
1998 World Champ. Vinicius Draculino W Pts: 2x0 F 70KG
1997 World Champ. Vitor Shaolin W Adv F 70KG

6. Royler Gracie Retirement

Royler Gracie officially retired on September 14,2011 after his last fight lost to Masakatsu Ueda by split decision.

7. Fighting Video Links

Royler Gracie vs Vitor "Shaolin" Ribeiro / World Championship 1997

Kazushi Sakuraba vs. Royce Gracie

UFC 5 Free Fight: Royce Gracie vs Ken Shamrock 2 (1995)

Royler Gracie vs Baret Yoshida ADCC 2000

Photo credit: @gracieparramatta

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