Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on November 21, 1959, Rickson is a jiu jitsu 7th degree black belt Open Class Champion of the Gracie family and undefeated mixed martial arts champion. As the third son of Grandmaster Helio Gracie, Rickson was born into jiu jitsu, started to compete at the age of six and was immediately acknowledged and esteemed as one of his kind. At the age of fifteen, Rickson was already a purple belt. However, this did not stop him from controlling and demolishing his opponents with more advanced belts. Without any surprise, Rickson received his black belt when he turned eighteen, the youngest age that one can receive a black belt. At the age of twenty, Rickson fought a Brazilian brawler called Zulu, who had a 140-match undefeated record. Rickson’s win over Zulu earned him immediate recognition in his home country and a reputation as the top free-style fighter. Zulu requested a rematch and five years later, Rickson once again beat Zulu before an audience of 20,000.