Burton setting sights on gold
MIXED martial artist Carl Burton will be going for gold when he takes part in the IMMAF Amateur World Championship 2015 in Las Vegas next month.
The Macclesfield fighter will compete at bantamweight for the United Kingdom in the tournament from July 6 to July 11.
It will be the second straight year that Burton will be in action at the event, finishing in third place in 2014.
The championships are held in conjunction with a major UFC event that week, and Burton is hoping to reign supreme.
“It’s a huge opportunity to showcase my skills so it’s an honour to be selected,” he said.
“I came third last year and that left a bitter taste in my mouth as you can never win a bronze medal, you can only lose a bronze.
“I went there with the intention of getting my hand raised at the end of the tournament and this time around I’ll know exactly what I’m heading into.
“I performed well but then I came up against quite an experienced wrestler last year that just ran through pretty much everybody.
“There is a good possibility we will meet again this year but I won’t go out there looking for revenge.
“If it comes along it comes along but I will relish any challenge that I am given and I’m certainly not afraid to fight anybody.
“I’m the only person to get re-selected from last year’s squad so that’s an achievement that I’m quite proud of.
“It’s great to be competing in Las Vegas alongside a UFC event too, especially when you get to be shoulder to shoulder with some of those high calibre fighters.”
Along with preparing himself for next month’s event, Burton trains others at his 12 Gauge Martial Arts gym in Macclesfield.
That coincides with him also having a full-time job, and Burton admits it is hard to balance everything whilst trying to raise money for the trip too.
“It is tough finding the time to do everything as I have three jobs essentially,” he said.
“We have to find our own sponsors to help fund the trip as well so that can be quite frustrating.
“People seem to forget that this is basically our Olympics, but because we are competing in MMA then some people deem the sport to be unethical.
“I’m basically having to fork out £1000 of my own money to get punched in the face, so that is always going to leave a bit of a sour taste in my mouth!
“I have received a lot of support from my current sponsors Chrome Motors, East Cheshire Mortgages and Rustic Coffee though.
“Louis’ Gym, Mec Construction and JG’s Windows have helped to sponsor me too so I want to say thank you to them all for helping to get me to Las Vegas.”
Burton currently has a GoFundMe page running on his ‘12 Gauge Martial Arts Macclesfield’ Facebook website for anybody who wants to help contribute to his journey.
‘I’m the only person to be re-selected from last year’s squad so that’s an achievement I’m quite proud of’
●● Mixed martial artist Carl Burton