Expanding North West MMA promotion Budo Fighting Championships has revealed that all professional fighters on the promotion will be subject to mandatory blood tests.
The measure, put in place by Budo Fighting Championships promoter Chris Clarke, will come into effect on June 1. From then, it will be a requirement for all Professional fighters to complete a blood test prior to competing at a Budo event. The promotion has hosted many fighters that have gone on to compete on the European and global stage.
While SAFE MMA has worked to encourage similar fighter safety under their own remit, this positive step taken by Clarke is a first for an individual promotion.
Speaking to AddictedOTR.com, The Budo promoter said: ”I’m a big advocate for blood tests, and going forward within UKMMA, I believe that all promoters should make fighters’ safety an absolute must if we’re going to make it a mainstream sport in the UK.
This isn’t something we’ve just thought up over night, it’s already being done but our format is going to be a little different. Initially this will only cover Professional contests and there’ll be no registration fees or costs to any participating fighter. A lot of the time you can get a standard blood test done at your GP for free – this will highlight any blood poisoning or disease. At worst, these tests cost a few quid but it’s absolutely worth it.”
When SAFE MMA launched, few would argue that promotions should have be looking to get on board as soon as possible. This was met with some criticism from fighters and promoters with regard to the additional cost of putting on a domestic show. Budo’s new blood testing scheme will not come with added cost to the competitors, as Chris explained.
“This might annoy a few people,” he said. “But a lot of competitors on the domestic circuit compete for the love of MMA, most make nothing from fighting and can barely cover the cost of an eight-week camp. I don’t think they should be paying £100+ registration fees and additional costs.”
The additional costs are unavoidable, but where other promoters may have shied away from the responsibility of covering or even subsidising them, Clarke intends to bear the financial burden in order to provide improved fighter safety, confirming that costs incurred will be reimbursed for those who compete.
“Budo Fighting Championships will foot the bill for ALL professional fighters who will be reimbursed on the night, following the conclusion of the event.”
Following a week that has seen the mainstream spotlight shone on MMA for all the wrong reasons, for such measures to be introduced on the regional circuit is welcome news.
Budo Fighting Championships continues to grow and measures like those mentioned make the Bolton-based fight show an appealing proving ground for up-and-coming fighters.
As well as recent expansion into Yorkshire and the South, the future looks very bright for Clarke and his team, with a string of shows lined up for the remainder of the year and improving standards on fighter safety being a very positive move by the promotion.
You can keep upto date on Budo via their social media channels and by staying tuned to AddictedOTR.com.
Upcoming Budo Fighting Championships events:
Budo Fighting Championships 14 – Watford, May 21
Budo Fighting Championships 15 – Newcastle, July 23 (TBC)
Budo Fighting Championships 16 – Bolton, September 11
Budo Fighting Championships 17 – TBC
Budo Fighting Championships 18 – Bolton, December 4