Travis Stevens Fan Page

Subscribe to our Newsletter
Travis Stevens (2008 & 2012 Judo Olympian, 4x World Judo Team Member, Renzo Gracie BJJ Black Belt)

2014 IJF Grand Prix Tbilisi, Tbilisi, Georgia

Final Result

1. TCHRIKISHVILI, Avtandili (GEO)            
2. STEVENS, Travis (USA)           
3. MARGIANI, Ushangi (GEO)          
3. CHEN, Asaf (ISR)                   
5. MEHDIYEV, Mammadali (AZE)               
5. GHASEMI NEJAD, Amir (IRI)                        
7. SAFGULIYEV, Tural (AZE)         
7. SEMENOV, Stanislav (RUS)    

HUGE congratulations to Team USA's Travis Stevens, who went 3-1 to take SILVER at the Grand Prix Tbilisi in Georgia today! Stevens, ranked No. 4 in the world, was on the attack in the final gold-medal match against the No. 1-ranked Avtandili Tchrikishvili of Georgia when he was caught with a counter throw to lose the match in the -81 kg. division. Stevens (USA Judo Training Site, Pedro's Judo/NYAC, Wakefield, MA) has been on a roll lately, taking gold at the Grand Prix Dusseldorf one month ago today.

2014 IJF Grand Prix Dusseldorf, Dusseldorf, Germany

U.S. Olympian Travis Steven Takes GOLD At Grand Prix Dusseldorf

U.S. Olympian Travis Stevens went 5-0 today to take a gold medal at the super competitive Grand Prix Dusseldorf, defeating the No. 6 ranked athlete in the world and collecting points that could boost his own international standing already in the top 10.

Watch The Full Gold Medal Match Here

This is the second time that Stevens, 81 kg. (USA Judo Training Site, Pedro’s Judo/NYAC, Wakefield, MA) has taken gold at this tournament in the judo powerhouse of Germany, where the best fighters converge from throughout the world. His coach Jimmy Pedro, the U.S. Olympic Judo Team coach in London 2012, also took gold at this tournament in ’95 and ‘98.

Stevens said he started the day with some doubts but soon found his pace. “The day didn't start too well, and I was concerned due to my performance in Austria the previous week,” where Stevens finished far short of the podium. “But once I was out on the mat after my second match I fell back into my groove and remembered how to do judo again. Overall, I'm not too happy with the performance but more relieved. There is still a lot of work to do in order to get used to the new rules and the new fit to the judo gi,” both recently revised by the International Judo Federation.

Stevens started the day with a bye in his first round. Then he threw Czech Republic’s Jaromir Musil for ippon and, following that, defeated Germany’s Dominic Ressel by two yukos. That put Stevens in the quarter finals where he bested Georgia’s Ushangi Margiani with wazari then a pin for ippon.

In the semifinals, Stevens pinned Uzbekistan's Shukhratjon Arslanov for the instant-win ippon. In the final gold medal round, it took Travis a little more than two minutes to move Germany's Sven Maresch, ranked 6th in World, to the ground for a pin, an ippon and the gold medal.

Travis was ranked 10 in world in 81 kg. division as per IJF ranking roster. He collects 300 ranking points for finishing first at this Grand Prix Dusseldorf, very likely to boost his standing among the planet’s best-of-the-best.

2013 IJF Grand Prix Tashkent, Tashkent, Uzbekastan


USA Judo’s team in Tashkent claimed a gold and two silver medals at this Grand Prix with Travis Stevens taking the top spot on the podium after going 4-0 for the day  in front of a packed audience in the Uzbekistan capital, downing two top-seven fighters from the recent World Championships.

Taking the silver medals were Hannah Martin, 63 kg. (Jason Morris Judo/NYAC, Genville, NY), and Hana Carmichael, 57 kg. (USA Judo Training Site, Pedro's Judo Center/NYAC, Wakefield, MA).

Stevens dominated his rounds. In his final match, Stevens (USA Judo Training Site, Pedro's Judo Center/NYAC, Wakefield, MA) controlled the contest against Iran’s Amir Nejad, throwing him twice for yukos with osoto gari and seoi nage before the clock expired in the 81 kg. division.

Stevens said first match, against Uzbekistani Rustam Saidov, “started off a little slow … I found it very difficult to deal with his gripping strategies.” Stevens found himself tied three shidos a piece. “But on the next gripping exchange he made a very big mistake and I was able to capitalize on it and throw him for ippon.”

In his next match, Stevens fought Austria’s Marcel Ott, who took seventh at the World Championships recently. “I was very concerned that my gas tank would not hold up in this match. I was lucky enough to throw him with an O-ouchi Uchimata combo for a yuko. Then as he was trying to push the pace I was able to throw him with a standing seio for ippon.”

In his third match, Stevens found himself facing the fifth-place finisher at the Worlds, Uuganbaatar Otgonbaatar of Mongolia, controlling the match with gripping to win with two yukos.

Stevens faced Amir Nejad in the final, who reached that point winning on penalties only. “I was not worried about him throwing me, but I made a mistake early and he was up by two shidos.” Then Stevens scored with osoto for a yuko. “I knew I’d won at that point because he didn't have a way to score. I then threw him with a drop seionage for another yuko then burned the rest of the match with newaza.”

Stevens summed it up: “overall I'm happy with my performance. After having such a poor performance at the World Championship, it felt good to have dominating wins over two top-seven finishers. There is still a lot of work that needs to be done before I'm back to where I once was but today was a great step in the right direction. “

Martin, who has been on the podium regularly in the last year at international events, took silver after winning her first two matches by ippon. Heading to the finals, she faced Brazil’s Mariana Barros who took the gold in the 63 kg division.

“Yes, Abu Dhabi is next ,” said Martin. “And I am overall happy with my result. I pinned the Uzbekistan and choked the Kazakhstan girl in the semi final. I got caught in the final with a nice attack, but it was a great experience being in the finals, and this result now puts me in the top 10 in the world.”

Carmichael also won silver, taking her first two matches by ippon before facing Brazil’s Ketleyn Quadros in the final. This was Carmichael’s first time winning a medal at a grand prix tournament. “I’m proud to be part of this team,” said she said in an interview following her final match.

1. Travis Stevens USA
2. Amir Ghasemi Nejad IRI
3. Hannes Conrad GER
3. Yakhyo Imamov UZB
5. Marcel Ott AUT
5. Uuganbaatar Otgonbaatar MGL
7. Artem Vasylenko UKR
7. Shukhrat Arslanov UZB

2013 Pan American Open Judo Championships, Montevideo, Uruguay


1. Travis Stevens USA
2. Emmanuel Lucenti ARG
3. Felipe Costa BRA
3. Carlos Luz BRA
5. Szabolcs Krizsan HUN
5. Scott McGrandle CAN
7. Tony Sangimino USA
7. Gadiel Miranda PUR


Renzo Gracie Academy Massachusetts

Travis Stevens, Team Renzo Gracie MA

2012 Olympian Travis Stevens on KING 5 News

2011 Grapplers Quest World Championships, Asbury Park, New Jersey

2011 Grapplers Quest World Championships
December 10th, 2011
Asbury Park, New Jersey

Men's No-Gi Intermediate Cruiserweight (180 – 189.9 lbs)

1st Place: Travis Stevens (NYAC/Pedro's Judo Center)
2nd Place: Brian Nolan (Renzo Gracie)
3rd Place: Peter Ferroni (NJMA)

Men's No-Gi Advanced Cruiserweight (180 – 189.9 lbs)

1st Place: Tom Manelski (Bill Scott BJJ)
2nd Place: Travis Stevens (NYAC/Pedro's Judo Center)
3rd Place: Adlan Amagov (K Dojo)

Men's BJJ Blue Belt Cruiserweight (180 – 189.9 lbs)

1st Place: Travis Stevens (NYAC/Pedro's Judo Center)
2nd Place:Fred Thomsen (Lloyd Irvin)
3rd Place: Michael Pennini (Best Way BJJ)

2011 IJF Grand Prix Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

October 16-18, 2011
2011 IJF Grand Prix Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Men's -81 kg

1. NAKAI, Takahiro (JPN)
2. ELMONT, Guillaume (NED)
3. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
3. VOROBEV, Ivan (RUS)
5. ATTAF, Safouane (MAR)
5. CANTO, Flavio (BRA)
5. MARIJANOVIC, Tomislav (CRO)
5. RAJABLI, Elkhan (AZE)

Travis Stevens takes bronze
At Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

October 18, 2011 – USA Judo’s Travis Stevens, a fighter likely to represent the United States at the Olympics next year in London, took a bronze medal at the super competitive Abu Dhabi Grand Prix that ended today.

Big ranking points and big dollars lure the best fighters in the world to this tournament. A combined purse of $200,000 went to athletes who won a spot on the podium. The points are critical to athletes hoping to qualify for a spot on an Olympic team.

Stevens, 81 kg, (Team FORCE, Wakefield, Mass.) captured the bronze medal in the 2nd day of the three-day competition, going 3-1 to the podium in a very deep field of competitors.

In the first round, Stevens beat Micha Egger from Switzerland by 2 shidos. In the 2nd round he faced Antoine Valois-Fortier from Canada and got up by 2 shidos and then threw the Canadian with Harai Goshi for waza-ari and the win.

In the quarterfinals, Stevens faced Elkhan Rajabli from Azerbaijan. After one minute, the opponent dropped onto his back sumi gaeshi and Travis pinned him for ippon with his special split-the-legs technique.

In the semi-final, Stevens looked to avenge his loss to Guillaume Elmont of the Nederlands, who beat him at the 1st round of the World Championships in Paris earlier this year. Unfortunately this uneventful match ended the same way as it did at the Worlds with Stevens losing, two shidos to one, despite making most of the attacks in the match. Elmont went on to win the silver medal.

In addition to Stevens’ bronze, other judoka placing from the U.S. included Marti Malloy, 57 kg (San Jose State University, San Jose, CA), Nick Delpopolo, 73 kg (Jason Morris Judo Center, Glenville, NY) and Kayla Harrison, 78 kg (Team FORCE, Wakefield, Mass.), who took 5th place slots.

For complete results, click HERE.

2011 World Cup Tashkent, Tashkent, Uzbekistan

September 17-18, 2011
2011 World Cup Tashkent
Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Male -81 kg

1. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
2. KAWAKAMI, Tomohiro (JPN)
3. IMAMOV, Yakhyo (UZB)
3. KACHUR, Kalem (CAN)
5. ELIAS, Nacif (BRA)
5. KABULOV, Farmon (UZB)
7. ALDIYEV, Duman (KAZ)
7. EGGER, Micha (SUI)

September 18, 2011 – Collecting points and training toward the Olympics in London next year, Travis Stevens took a gold medal for Team USA at a World Cup competition over the weekend in Uzbekistan.

Stevens is a favored fighter to win a medal for the US at the Olympics. He won all four matches in the 81kg division to take the World Cup gold at the tournament in Tashkent, the nation’s capital city.

"Travis travelled to Uzbekistan with the mission of winning Gold and gaining 100 points to help secure his spot in the 2012 Olympics and remain in top 8 on world ranking list," commented said Jimmy Pedro, two-time Olympic Bronze Medalist and Steven’s coach in Wakefield, Mass. "Mission accomplished!"

"I am very proud of Travis' win as the US has not had many gold medals in International World Cup events,” Pedro said. “This is a great confidence booster for him."

2011 IJF Grand Slam Brasil, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil


2011 IJF Grand Slam Moscow, Moscow, Russia

May 28-29, 2011
2011 IJF Grand Slam Moscow
Moscow, Russia

Male -81 kg

1. MARESCH, Sven (GER)
2. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
3. BOZBAYEV, Islam (KAZ)
5. KIM, Jae-Bum (KOR)
5. MAGOMEDOV, Sirazhudin (RUS)
5. MAMMADLI, Elnur (AZE)

FLASH: TRAVIS STEVENS takes SILVER today at Moscow Grand Slam!!!

May 29, 2011 – USA Judo’s Travis Stevens scaled the podium for a silver medal at the Moscow Grand Slam today, one of the toughest tournaments in the world, winning his first two matches with arm bars and then defeating Russian Ivan Nifontov in the quarterfinals – sweet revenge on Russian soil after Nifontov beat Stevens last year.

In his first match, Stevens battled Venezuela’s Mervin Rodriguez. The match was tie shido to shido when Stevens caught Rodriguez with his first arm bar of the day, juji gatame, for the submission win with 1 minute left in the match.

In his second match, Stevens caught Antonio Ciano of Italy with another quick juji gatame for win by submission in the first 30 seconds.

Then, in the quarterfinal, Stevens defeated Ivan Nifontov of Russia by yuko. He pinned the Russian for 15 seconds for the yuko victory. "The win against Nifontov was huge for Travis," said his coach, two-time Olympic Bronze medalist Jimmy Pedro, who led the team to Moscow. "The Russian defeated him last year. And this was sweet revenge in front of the Russian crowd."

In the semi final, Stevens faced Kazakhstan’s Islam Bozbayev. "Travis really dominated the match but could not find a way to score," Pedro said. Then the match went to sudden-death overtime. "Travis' relentless pace from the beginning finally took its toll on the exhausted Kazakhstan fighter. Travis caught him with a juji that he turned into a pin for the ippon victory."

In the final, Travis faced Sven Maresch from Germany who won the Abu Dhabi grand prix last year. The final was an intense gripping battle, and Travis' hard day finally caught up to him because he was physically drained by the end of the match. He lost a very close 2-1 penalty match and had to settle for the silver.

"I am extremely pleased with Travis' performance," Pedro said. "He really proved today that he is one of the best in the world. His transition into newaza was phenomenal, and really made the difference today."

"I had a great day today," Stevens said, "but I am never satisfied with losing to anyone. I especially don't like losing the way I did. I was not peaking for this event and my cardio and recovery are not at the level where I need them to be right now. I look forward to fighting in Brazil next month."

Stevens is a strong contender for the 2012 Olympic team headed for London. Among his recent laurels, Stevens took gold at the highly competitive Dusseldorf Grand Prix in February, defeating the 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist, Ole Bischof, on the climb. Bischof took third in Moscow today. And Stevens took a bronze at the Paris Grand Slam last year, another of the toughest tournaments in the world.

Placing 5th at the Moscow Grand Slam for Team USA were Kayla Harrison, who also trains on Team FORCE under Pedro in Wakefield, Mass., and Marti Malloy from the National Training Site at San Jose State University, where she is coached by Yosh Uchida.

-- Story by Ernest Pund

Travis Stevens: Ippon Seoi-Nage Highlight Video

2011 Pan American Judo Championships, Guadalajara, Mexico

April 1-2, 2011
2011 Pan American Judo Championships
Guadalajara, Mexico

Men's -81Kg

1. Leandro Guilheiro - Brazil
2. Travis Stevens - United States
3. Emmanuel Lucenti - Argentina
3. Antonie Valois Fortier - Canada

Travis Stevens, took silver, losing his final match by a mere yuko to Brazilian Leandro Guilheiro. Stevens, another hot prospect for London next year, was the first American to win gold at the Dusseldorf Grand Prix in Feburary, defeating the 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist, Ole Bischof, on the ascent.

2011 New York Open Team Tournament


2011 IJF Grand Prix Dusseldorf, Dusseldorf, Germany

February 19-20, 2011
2011 IJF Grand Prix Dusseldorf
Dusseldorf, Germany

Male -81 kg

1. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
3. MAMMADLI, Elnur (AZE)
5. ATTAF, Safouane (MAR)


February 20, 2011 – U.S. Olympian Travis Stevens battled his way to gold at the super hot Dusseldorf Grand Prix today, defeating the 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist, Ole Bischof, on the climb.

Stevens came out fast and fierce, slamming his first opponent, Thomas Davis of Britain, in just 47 seconds with a stunning uchimata, one of the sport’s most beautiful throws, for ippon.
“He just planted him,” said Pedro Sr., in charge of the elite competition teams at Pedro’s Judo Center in Wakefield, Mass., home of Team FORCE where Stevens trains under Pedro Sr.’s son, two-time Olympic Bronze Medalist Jimmy Pedro.

Stevens may have added to history with his gold win, Pedro Sr. believes, because he is probably only the second American to win a gold at this A-Level tourney. Jimmy Pedro was the first, Pedro Sr. said.
Stevens went on to nail another ippon in his second match against Slovenian Aljaz Sedej after leading him with penalties almost through entire match.

These players have given Stevens trouble in the past, Pedro Sr. said. Stevens barely beat the Englishman in golden-score at a recent tournament. And the Slovenian beat Stevens at the Worlds in 2009.
Fights didn’t get any easier. It was in his third match that he bested Ole Bischof of Germany by yuko, but what a victory that was! Bischof took gold at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Stevens came in 9th at that Olympics, his first.

This was a different Stevens today, Pedro Sr. said. This fighter was technically savvy and operating on his experience like never before.

“Today was his best day yet,” Pedro said. “He fought great technically, he fought really great matches all day.” And, today, Pedro said, Stevens fought like an experienced fighter, like someone who was learning from past matches and training. “The English kid never expected this,” the uchimata, Pedro said.

Stevens last two matches were against Russians. “Usually the Russians will pick you up when you make a mistake and throw you,” Pedro Sr. said. “He didn’t give ‘em that chance. They couldn’t get him.”
Stevens won both his last matches by yukos, very tough fights, Pedro said, against Arsen Pshmakhov in his fourth match and Murat Khabachirov in the fifth and last match.

Stevens is a strong contender for the 2012 Olympic team headed for London. Among his recent laurels, Stevens took bronze at the Paris Grand Slam last year, another of the toughest tournaments in the world, and he took gold at USA Judo’s 2010 Senior National Championships.

Stevens was among 500 competitors from nearly 70 countries at the two-day Grand Prix Dusseldorf this weekend, an A-level event tempting athletes with 15 ranking points for a gold medal win, nine points for silver and six for bronze. The only thing higher includes A+ tourneys like the Olympics and World Championships.
Coaching the US team in Germany were Eddie Liddie, USA Judo’s Director of Athlete Performance who oversees training of all elite athletes sparring for Olympic team spots, and Jim Pedro Sr. USA Judo sent 13 judokas to the tournament. For complete results, visit

-- Story by Ernest Pund

2011 World Cup Budapest, Budapest, Hungary

February 12-13, 2011
2011 World Cup Budapest
Budapest, Hungary

Male -81 kg

2. SCHMITT, Alain (FRA)
3. VOROBEV, Ivan (RUS)
5. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
5. SIDAKOV, Azamat (RUS)
7. GESS, Robert (GER)
7. LUCENTI, Enmanuel (ARG)

2011 IJF World Masters, Baku, Azerbaijan

January 15-16, 2011
2011 IJF World Masters Baku
Baku, Azerbaijan

Category Male -81 kg:
Contest Sheet

1. MAMMADLI, Elnur (AZE)
2. GUILHEIRO, Leandro (BRA)
3. BURTON, Euan (GBR)
3. NAKAI, Takahiro (JPN)
5. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
5. MARIJANOVIC, Tomislav (CRO)
5. CLERGET, Axel (FRA)
5. ATTAF, Safouane (MAR)

Travis Stevens Upsets World Medalist, Places Fifth at World Masters Championships
Nicole Jomantas January 19, 2011

Photo: Karin Schulz Photography
.Travis Stevens (81kg)
(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Competing for the first-time at the World Masters Championships, 2008 Olympian Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE / 81kg) placed fifth in Baku, Azerbaijan on Sunday.

Added to the international calendar for the first time in 2010, the World Masters Championships is an invitation-only event in which the top 16 players in each division compete for medals and nearly as many Olympic qualifying points as the Senior World Championships. USA Judo sent a team of three athletes to compete in the event.

“It was a different experience. We didn't have the warm up rounds like we would have in normal events,” Stevens said. “But when you think about it, it's no different than the other tournament I fight. When you go to Grand Slams and Grand Prix events, you are going to have to be these types of players to medal and that's always the goal.”

In a division stacked with World and Olympic medalists, Stevens drew 2010 World medalist Masahiro Takamatsu (JPN) in the first round of the 81kg division.

“Takamatsu is a tough first match there were definitely easier first rounds that I could have had,” Stevens said. “Style-wise I match up well with him, though, so I just had to make sure that I kept pressure on him all the time, mostly on the ground. If I could make sure he was nervous about being on the ground, he would hesitate with his throws.”

At the conclusion of the five-minute regulation period, neither player had scored and the match was sent into Golden Score (overtime) where Stevens threw Takamatsu with an uchimata (inner thigh throw) for a yuko (quarter-point) score.

“It was a long match and I could tell he was just as tired as I was,” Stevens said. “Knowing that gave me some confidence that I could pull it off.”

With one more win needed to reach the podium in the single-elimination event, Stevens fought two-time World medalist Euan Burton (GBR) – the player Stevens lost to in the fourth round of the Senior Worlds last year.

Unfortunately, Stevens racked up four penalties and lost the quarter-final match.

“The match with Burton is one that is going to haunt me for a long time,” Stevens said. “I lost that match because i didn't stick to the game plan that Jimmy and I had come up with. I was just too tired from the match before. He is a guy I can beat and I just needed to stay mentally tough in order to pull that one off.”

Although Stevens earned Olympic qualifying points, falling short of the podium left the 24-year-old disappointed with his performance.

“I'm not happy with the way I fought. Yes, I beat the guy who took third at Worlds and second at the Tokyo Grand Slam, but I hold myself to a higher standard I expect to win regardless of the draw. I know I have the judo to beat anyone in the division. I just have to start pulling the trigger and throw.”

Stevens will have the opportunity to fight again for another chance at a podium finish when he fights at the Paris Grand Slam on Feb. 5 – an event in which he earned a bronze in 2010.

During the next few weeks, Stevens plans on working on his standing game.

“The goal is to always win. My second goal is for all of my matches to end with a throw. I don't want to win on shidos,” Stevens said. “For me, winning a medal at a big event doesn't provide me with comfort that I will do well in the next event. I think that this year's Paris tournament will be a lot tougher then last year’s as well.”

2010 Grand Prix Qingdao, Qingdao, China

December 16-17, 2010
2010 Grand Prix Qingdao
Qingdao, China

Men's -81kg

1. MAGOMEDOV, Sirazhudin RUS
2. LI, Maojian CHN
3. STEVENS, Travis USA
5. SI, Rijigawa CHN
5. BOTTIEAU, Joachim BEL
5. HA, Ji-Soo KOR
5. SEDEJ, Aljaz SLO

Travis Stevens Wins Bronze at Qingdao Grand Prix
Nicole Jomantas December 21, 2010

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) earned his first Grand Prix medal and secured himself the chance to compete at the 2011 World Masters Championships at the Qingdao Grand Prix on Sunday.

Stevens earned his first win in the 81kg division by two waza-aris (half-point each) over Yewen Li (CHN).

In the second round, Stevens led Srdjan Mrvaljevic (MNE), a 2009 World Championships fifth-place finisher, by a yuko (quarter-point) before ending the match by ippon with two seconds left on the clock.

Stevens advanced to the quarter-finals where he defeated Joachim Bottieau (BEL) by a yuko.

With a medal guaranteed, Stevens fought in the semifinals against Sirazhudin Magomedov (RUS), but lost by ippon – the first score Stevens gave up all day.

In the single elimination event, Stevens placed third overall. Stevens’ bronze medal finish also moved him into a #15 ranking on the World Ranking List and will qualify the 2008 Olympian to compete at the 2011 World Masters Championships in January in which the top 16 athletes in each weight division will face off.

2010 IJF Grand Prix Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

November 22-23, 2010
2010 IJF Grand Prix Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Men’s 81kg
1. Sven Maresch (GER)
2. Aljaz Sedej (SLO)
3. Vitalii Dudchyk (UKR)
3. Artem Vasylenko (UKR)
5. Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE)
5. Francesco Bruyere (ITA)
5. Tomislav Marijanovic (CRO)
5. Elkhan Rajabli (AZE)

Also representing the NYAC and USA Judo National Team FORCE, four-time World Cup medalist Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass.) narrowly missed the podium with a fifth place finish in the 81kg division.

Stevens opened the tournament with a first-round win over 2009 Qingdao Grand Prix medalist Mohamed Darwish (EGY) whom he threw for ippon (instant win).

In the second round, Stevens defeated 2008 Paris Super World Cup Champion Sergiu Toma (MDA) by two penalties.

Stevens advanced to the quarter finals, but fell short of his quest for bronze when he was footswept by four-time World Cup medalist Vitaliy Dudchyk (UKR).

Stevens’ fifth-place finish marked the third top-five finish for Team USA during the first two days of competition.

2010 El Salvador World Cup, San Salvador, El Salvador

June 27-28, 2010
2010 El Salvador World Cup
San Salvador, El Salvador

Category Male -81 kg:

1st place ELIAS, Nacif (BRA)
2nd place STEVENS, Travis (USA)
3rd place FERREIRA, Marcelo (BRA)
3rd place VALOIS-FORTIER, Antoine (CAN)
5th place BENCOSME, Jose (USA)
5th place IMAGAWA, Justin (CAN)
7th place AMAYA, Juan (ESA)
7th place HIDRO, Rodrigo (CHI)

2010 Lisbon World Cup, Lisbon, Portugal

June 11-12, 2010
2010 Lisbon World Cup
Lisbon, Portugal

Mens -81 kg

1. CANTO, Flavio (BRA)
2. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
3. EGGER, Micha (SUI)
3. NAKAI, Takahiro (JPN)
5. BURGES, Milan (HUN)
5. VIRTA, Antti (FIN)

Travis Stevens Wins Silver at Lisbon World Cup
Nicole Jomantas June 14, 2010

Photo: José Antonio Fernandes
.Travis Stevens (far left) receives his silver medal in the 81kg division.
(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Beijing Olympian Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) won his second medal on the World Tour this year on Sunday with a second place finish in the 81kg division at the Lisbon World Cup in Portugal.

The win marked the first time Stevens, a two-time Grand Slam bronze medalist, advanced to the finals of a World Tour event. With qualification for the 2012 Olympic Games kicking off last month, Stevens also earns valuable points on the World Ranking List.

“I'm glad to have gotten some wins under my belt, but there is still a lot of work to get done,” said Stevens who will compete in three more World Tour events before the Senior World Championships are held Sept. 9-13 in Tokyo, Japan. “I just hope I can put it all together when it counts in Tokyo.”

Stevens won each of his first four matches by ippon (instant win) to qualify for the finals.

After a first-round bye in a 45-person division, Stevens began his match with Robert Conrad (GER) by trying to slow down the German who later went in for a right drop seoi nage (dropping shoulder throw). Stevens survived the attempt and choked Conrad while they were on the ground to end the match.

In the third round, Stevens threw Miguel Medeiros (POR) several times with variations of standing seoi nages, but it wasn’t until late in the match that Stevens caught Medeiros with a throw in the last 15 seconds for a waza-ari (half-point) score that he rolled into a pin to win the match.

Stevens’ quarter-final match pitted him against Milan Burges (HUN) who was coming off an upset over 2009 Junior World Champion Loic Pietri (FRA). Stevens controlled the match from the start, however, and pinned Pietri for the win.

In the semifinals, Stevens met Micha Egger (SUI) who he defeated last year at the Warsaw World Cup. Although Stevens threw him once with no score, he was successful on his next two attempts, earning a waza-ari off his first standing seoi nage and ippon off the next.

Stevens drew another familiar opponent in the finals – Flavio Canto (BRA), the 2004 Olympic medalist who Stevens had defeated to win the 2007 Pan Am Games and 2009 Pan American Championships.

This time, however, it was Canto who earned the win by several scores. Early in the match, Canto pinned Stevens at the end of a 30-second groundwork exchange. Stevens escaped less than 20 seconds into the pin, but now had a yuko (quarter-point) score to catch up to. Stevens went in for a huge attack, but was countered by Canto who threw Stevens for a waza-ari and pinned him to end the match.

2010 Pan American Judo Championships, San Salvador, El Salvador

April 10-11, 2010
2010 Pan American Judo Championships
San Salvador, El Salvador

A two-time Pan Am Champion, Travis Stevens (Wakefield, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) earned his fourth straight medal in the 81kg division.

Stevens began his day with a win over Kalem Kachur (CAN). After throwing Kachur for an early waza-ari, Stevens racked up three yuko scores (quarter-point each), including a final throw at the buzzer to win his match after a first-round bye.

In the semifinals, Stevens was caught during an early exchange by Osmay Cruz (CUB) who threw him for ippon.

Fighting for bronze, Stevens took care of business quickly, throwing Mervin Rodriguez (VEN) for ippon in 14 seconds.

“Although Travis had to settle for bronze, he is still the best in 81kg in the Pan Am,” Coach Pedro said. “Judo is an unforgiving sport and one mistake is all it takes to ruin your day. For the bronze, Travis threw a tough Venezuelan for ippon in 14 seconds. He is chomping at the bit to get revenge on the Cuban in the team competition on Sunday.”

Men’s 81kg

1. Flavio Canto (BRA)
2. Osmay Cruz (CUB)
3. Emmanuel Lucenti (ARG)
3. Travis Stevens (Wakefield, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE)
5. Kalem Kachur (CAN)
5. Mervin Rodriguez (VEN)
7. Juan Amaya (ESA)
7. Gadiel Miranda (PUR)

2010 Paris Grand Slam Judo Championships, Paris, France

February 6-7, 2010
2010 Paris Grand Slam Judo Championships
Paris, France

Male -81 kg

1. GUILHEIRO, Leandro (BRA)
3. JEANNIN, Antoine (FRA)
3. STEVENS, Travis (USA)
5. RAJABLI, Elkhan (AZE)
5. SONG, Dae-Nam (KOR)
5. TOMA, Sergiu (MDA)

2010 Belgian Open Judo Championships, Vise, Belgium

January 30-31, 2010
2010 Belgian Open Judo Championships
Vise, Belgium

Mens' 81Kg

1. Bruyere Francesco (ITA)
2. Stevens Travis (USA)
3. Schmitt Alain (FRA)
3. Bottieau Joachim (BEL)
5. Boussiron Vincent (FRA)
5. Grossklaus Ciril (SUI)
7. Joubert Quentin (FRA)
7. Aminot Maxime (FRA)

Travis Stevens Wins a Silver Medal at the Belgium Open
Nicole Jomantas February 02, 2010

Photo: Lincoln Han
Travis Stevens (far left) receives his silver medal in the 81kg division.

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) - Beijing Olympian Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) won a silver medal in an 81kg division with 91 players at the USA Judo Senior B-Level Belgium Open in Vise on Sunday.

Stevens' win is the first medal for a U.S. player at this event since Ryan Reser (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center) won bronze in 2006.

Stevens won six straight matches to advance to his first Belgium Open final.

Neither Stevens nor 2009 British Open medalist Steven Cnudde (BEL) scored during the first five minutes of their first-round match. With the Golden Score (overtime) period winding down, Stevens countered an attack by Cnudde and threw him for ippon (instant win) with an uchimata (inner thigh throw).

Stevens defeated Gesualdo Scollo (ITA) by four penalties to win his next match and earned his third win against 2009 Birmingham World Cup silver medalist Tom Reed (GBR).

After throwing Albert Fercher (AUT) for ippon in the fourth round, Stevens advanced to the quarter-finals where he armbarred Vincent Boussiron (FRA).

With five matches under his belt, Stevens continued to look strong as he threw Ciril Grossklaus (SUI) with a seoi nage (shoulder throw) for a waza-ari (half-point) score to win the match.

In the finals, Stevens fought well against 2005 World silver medalist Francesco Bruyere (ITA), but lost a close match to win the silver medal.

2009 Birmingham World Cup, Birmingham, Great Britain

September 20-21, 2009
2009 Birmingham World Cup
Birmingham, Great Britain

Men’s 81kg
1. Euan Burton (GBR)
2. Tom Reed (GBR)
3. Dennis Huck (GER)
3. Murat Khabachirov (RUS)
5. Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE)5. Flavio Canto (BRA)
7. Adam Bick (GBR)
7. Szabolcs Krizsan (HUN)

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Two-time Pan American Champion Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) had his best finish at a European A-Level event on Sunday when he placed fifth in the 81kg division at the Birmingham World Cup in Great Britain.

The finish is the second top-five placing on the World Tour for Stevens who won a bronze medal in July at the Brazil Grand Slam.

Stevens led in his opening match by a yuko (quarter-point) when Bastien Puget (FRA) committed two penalties. With just over a minute left in the match, Stevens added another yuko to his tally. Stevens was given two penalties of his own in the final minute, but still produced the win.

In the second round, Stevens and former European U23 Champion Nick Hein (GER) also fought for five minutes before Stevens won the match by a yuko score.

Down by a yuko score off an early attack by Szabolcs Krizsan (HUN), Stevens came back quickly in the quarter-final match where he defeated Krizsan by ippon (instant win) late in the first minute of the match to advance to the medal rounds.

In the semifinals, Stevens met 2007 World medalist Euan Burton (GBR) and, while he kept Burton from scoring, Stevens lost the match by a trio of penalties and Burton went on to win the gold.

Fighting for bronze, Stevens attacked seven-time World Cup medalist Dennis Huck (GER), but was countered and thrown for a waza-ari (half-point). Stevens forced Huck into two penalties to earn a yuko score, but couldn’t pick up the third penalty he would have needed to send the match to Golden Score (overtime) and placed fifth overall.

June Meet The Athlete: Travis Stevens Goes For Gold

June Meet the Athlete: Travis Stevens Goes for the Gold

Nicole Jomantas June 11, 2010

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Two years ago, Travis Stevens (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) walked off the mat at the Olympic Games in Beijing, vowing to begin his quest for gold in 2012 just minutes after placing ninth at his first Games.

Since then, Stevens’ focus hasn’t waivered and he continues to train and compete around the world with the goal of getting his hands on the top international players in the sport as he prepares not only for London, but first for the Senior World Championships that will be held Sept. 9-13 in Tokyo.

“The goal is always to win a medal,” Stevens said of his World Championship aspirations.

And while some people say the addition of a possible second player from every nation could make that quest harder, Stevens holds just the opposite philosophy.

“I like two per weight. I think there will be at least 60 guys in the division and that’s better for me and my judo,” he said. “There’s only a few guys in the world that I worry about and this will give me a chance to do well.”

While Stevens may have been a relative unknown in Beijing, now he has become more familiar to his opponents as he has medaled twice at the Pan American Championships and earned bronzes at the 2009 Brazil Grand Slam in Rio de Janeiro and the 2010 Paris Grand Slam.

The win in Paris placed Stevens in an elite club of U.S. men to medal in Paris as he joined the likes of past medalist Jimmy Pedro (Methuen, Mass.), Bobby Berland (Chicago, Ill.) and Jason Morris (Glenville, N.Y.) – an elite group that also holds four Olympic medals among them.

“Unlike a lot of athletes who hope for a good draw at an event or who choose easier events to compete in, Travis always wants to fight the best athletes in his division and opts for the hardest competitions, like Paris or Moscow. This to me shows how bad he wants to be the best and what he is willing to do to get there,” said Pedro who coaches Stevens at the USA Judo National Team FORCE program at Pedro’s Judo Center in Wakefield.

While most 23-year-olds are enjoying summer vacation, Stevens left this week for what will be a whirlwind tour of dojos, nations and tournaments leading up to the Senior Worlds.

First up? The Lisbon World Cup in Portugal where Stevens will aim for his second A-Level medal on European soil when he takes to the mat on Sunday.

From there, Stevens will return to suburban Boston where he will train with his USA Judo National Team FORCE teammates for just over a week before leaving for the El Salvador World Cup in San Salvador that will be held from June 26-27.

There will be no time for Stevens to brush up on his Spanish as the next stop for him is the Moscow Grand Slam over the Fourth of July weekend.

“I’ve always wanted to fight there and I like the bigger tournaments,” said Stevens who admitted he doesn’t have a lot of experience fighting Russians and players from Eastern Europe, but said he looks forward to both the event itself and the training camp where he expects to be able to work with National Team members from Russia and surrounding nations.

Next on the schedule, Stevens will continue to spend the rest of July training at camps in Germany, Spain and Belarus before returning to Wakefield just in term for the USA Judo World Team Training Camp from Aug. 2-6.

With so much time on the road, one might question whether Stevens gets lonely, but the three-time Senior National Champion prefers it that way.

“I like it, actually. I prefer to be by myself or with small groups when I’m travelling,” he said. “When I’m on my own it lets me focus better and things are on my schedule and my terms.”

The travel and training that comes with Stevens’s medal quest doesn’t come without a cost. Not only are more than a dozen international trips a year expensive, but being a full-time athlete makes it difficult to hold down a job.

As one of the top Olympic hopefuls for USA Judo, Stevens has not only the majority of his travel and training expenses covered by the sport’s National Governing Body, but he also receives a stipend that has ranged from $1,000 to $2,000 a month this year for living expenses.

“The money’s been a godsend. Without it I wouldn’t have been able to afford an apartment, trips to Europe, any of it,” Stevens said. “You’d be surprised how much things can add up over time, but without USA Judo’s support I wouldn’t be able to work out three or four times a day like I do now. It allows me not to have to worry about juggling a job or calling in sick because I was coming back from Europe. I can just focus on winning medals and being the best I can be."

Travis Stevens Places 9th in the 2008 Olympic Games, Beijing, China

August 12th, 2008
2008 Olympic Games
Beijing, China

Judo - Men's -81kg Results

1. Ole Bischof, Germany
2. Kim Jaebum, South Korea
3. Tiago Camilo, Brazil
3. Roman Gontiuk, Ukraine
5. Nyamkhuu Damdinsuren, Mongolia
5. Guillaume Elmont, Netherlands
7. Euan Burton, Great Britain
7. Robert Krawczyk, Poland
9. Travis Stevens, United States

Travis Stevens, in blue, throws Tiago Camilo of Brazil in the 81 kg judo competition Tuesday at the Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

(Beijing, China) – Within an hour after 22-year-old Travis Stevens (Glenville, N.Y. / Tacoma, Washington) placed ninth in the 81kg division on Tuesday, he was already making plans for tonight’s workout, tomorrow’s workout and the gold medal he hopes to win in London four years from now.

A Pan American Games Champion who won his first international gold medal at the U.S. Open less than two years ago, Stevens began his Olympic Games with a first round bye and a second round match that ended in just over three minutes when he soundly defeated Franklin Ceisneros (ESA). After Cisneros was given a penalty, Stevens threw him for a yuko (quarter-point) score and later armbarred him to win the match.

In the next round, Stevens was penalized twice against 10-time World Cup medalist and former European Champion Ole Bischof (GER) and thrown for a koka (smallest points) score. Although Bischof was given a penalty as well, Stevens lost the match.

“He was really strong and he changed up how he fights which I didn’t expect,” Stevens said. “The German brought a whole new game plan and let me make mistakes.”

In one of the day’s biggest upsets, Bischof dispatched reigning World Champion Tiago Camilo (BRA) in the

quarter-finals which kept Stevens’ medal hopes alive as he moved down to the repechage where athletes can fight through for bronze.

“It’s a new day!” Stevens said after finding out he was going to have another chance at a potential medal.

An uneducated spectator never would have known that Stevens’ next opponent, Mehman Azizov (AZE), was a 17-time World Cup medalist who placed fifth in Athens as Stevens controlled the entire match from the first minute.

Azizmov was awarded the first penalty of the match and a pair of penalties for both players soon followed before Stevens threw Azizmov for a waza-ari (half-point) score.

In the final minute, Azizmov still hadn’t attacked and was given a third penalty which, combined with the throw for a waza-ari earlier in the match, combined to give Stevens the win with 54 seconds remaining.

Stevens’ next opponent was Camilo who won the 2007 World Championships in spectacular fashion, throwing all of his opponents for ippon (instant win).

Down by two penalties, Stevens was thrown by Camilo for a koka score, but still didn’t give up, nearly tying the match with a throw that was scored as a yuko in the fourth minute.

Camilo held onto the narrow lead for the final 90 seconds to win the match while Stevens placed ninth.

“I think I got a couple bad calls during the day, but if you don’t come back from that you don’t really deserve to win,” Stevens said.

After his last match, Stevens described the competition as being a valuable experience toward his goal to become the best judo player in the world.

“I didn’t perform my best, but I did a lot of things right and I’m going to learn from my mistakes,” Stevens said. “Now that I’ve been here, I’ve had the experience and I’ve shown that I can compete at this level.”

While many players will take time off after the Games, Stevens insists there will be no break in his focus for gold.

“I’m going to go back to the village and go for a run tonight and then do a workout tomorrow. I want to get right back into training and go through the tapes. If you wait a month, you start to forget things so I’m staying through freestyle wrestling and then I want to get back in the dojo.” said Stevens who plans to return to international competition in the fall with stops at the U.S. Open and Rendez-Vous Canada as well as a trip to fight in Europe.

For Stevens, the countdown to London starts today: “I’m ready to be on the top of the podium in 2012.”

For more on Stevens' performance, read Morris' blog, "Live at the Olympics," at

Daily Gazette Article

King 5 Olympic Report

*Photo courtesy Lou DiGesare/

Travis Stevens winning the 2008 USA Olympic Team Trials, Las Vegas, Nevada

Travis Stevens earned quick wins in the 81kg division by ippon against Danny Satinsky and Andrew Hung.

In the final, Stevens fought Aaron Cohen for the first time this year. Although Stevens won four of their five matches in 2007, the crowd expected a close match and both players had nearly a hundred supporters in the stands.

“I’m from Tacoma and then I trained in San Jose and now I’m on the East Coast so I have a big group of people cheering for me,” Stevens said.

The match was scoreless and went into overtime when Cohen threw Stevens for a koka' While Cohen celebrated on the mat, the referee jury convened and overturned the call, resuming the match for both players.

Stevens came back several attacks later, throwing Cohen with a pickup for ippon.

“It means a lot too because that would’ve been a lot of pressure to come back and beat him two more times,” Stevens said. “I was just happy [after the throw for ippon] because I knew it was official.”
Clinic with 2008 Olympian, Travis Stevens at Ippon Judo Dojo(Lakewood, Washington)

***Photos by Lou DiGesare,