The Light-Heavyweight division has given fight fans some of the most exciting and explosive fighters the Mixed Martial Arts circuit has to offer. The amateur scene is especially ripe with these phenomenal athletes that are looking to make a name for themselves in the lion’s den.
For Gabe Rednose, he has accomplished so much over the last 5 years and reached the peak of the amateur scene, ranking #1 in Latin America, Oklahoma and Mexico.
I caught up with Gabe, to reflect on his amateur journey and gain some insight into what the future holds for one of the most explosive amateurs in the US today.
Gabe ‘The Freight Train’ Rednose (7-2-0) is an American amateur Mixed Martial Artist currently competing in the Light-Heavyweight Division, representing Lovato Jiu-jitsu & MMA. Gabe has competed for Rage in the Cage OKC, Gladiator Cage Fighting, Tuff-N-Uff, Martial Combat League, North West Fighting Alliance and the IMMAF Pan American Championships.
I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for taking the time to speak with me today Gabe, and giving me the opportunity to speak to you on your amateur journey thus far.
“Yes sir, thank you for the opportunity. You’re all over my Facebook, it’s been a goal of mine to one day talk to you, so I appreciate the opportunity.”
My pleasure Gabe, I’m glad we’ve finally got the chance to speak.
Each and every individual that takes the violent yet exhilarating walk to the changed enclosure, has a story to tell on what led them to take their Mixed Martial Arts journey.
What led you to venture out on your amateur career back in 2018?
“Well, I’ve wrestled since the 5th grade and I’ve always been pretty active in sports throughout school growing up. I wanted to wrestle at a college after high-school but I realised that really wasn’t for me, I’d rather just come back home and maybe try the workforce out. I got back home and I was really hungry to compete, I had a few buddy’s who actually did MMA, they were strikers. They’d always ask me to come in during their fight camp, and help them with wrestling. One of them talked me into getting on the same card as him, that’s how everything got started.”
And what a success story it has been thus far, from capturing Heavyweight with 2 organisations and also Light-Heavyweight gold, to representing your country and becoming the number 1 ranked amateur Light-Heavyweight in the US, Mexico and Latin America.
An achievement no doubt you are extremely proud of?
“Absolutely yeah, it’s been quite the journey you know. I’ve always been a bigger guy, after having my kids I took a break from Fighting, I got really fat and out of shape. I looked at myself in the mirror one day and I didn’t like what I saw, I made the switch in my head and from that exact moment I knew I needed to make a change because I’m a father now and I wanted to lead my kids by example. In my head I knew I had to make a change so I flipped that switch and the journey was on, I ended up losing 94 lbs and got down to 200 lbs and I was feeling really good. I started training MMA again and it just so happens I got a call from North West Fighting Alliance over in Arkansas which is the state over from me. They said I see you haven’t fought in a while, I have this undefeated wrestler I can’t match, would you be interested in fighting him? This was my debut at 205 lbs and it was for a title against an undefeated fighter, I said sure. Made the journey over to Arkansas, and I think it was a minute and 36 second 1st round TKO. Getting the victory felt really good getting the victory, I think I weighed in at 203 lbs, and that kinda started a new journey for me. It just so happens that Joe Stevenson, who is my MMA Coach now, happened to be there as a special guest commentator and he’s actually the director of the USA team. He came up to me afterwards, that’s how I got involved with team USA.”
A tremendous honour for you to be handed selected like that no doubt.
“Yes sir, it was a blessing and I was very grateful for the opportunity.”
And such a quick transition into Light-Heavyweight, is that where you see yourself competing as you continue on your career?
“I for sure feel great at 205 lbs but honestly, I feel like I can push it a bit more and make my pro debut at 185 lbs. I’m walking around at about 228/230 lbs now, but that’s with me kinda eating whatever and not sticking to a strict diet plan. So if I’m.locked in and I’m committed to that diet and my cardio is up and I’m doing everything the right way, I feel like 185 lbs might be my next move or contemplate my pro debut.”
Being such a highly ranked individual on the amateur scene, I’m guessing that would be in the not so distant future, as I bet it’s becoming increasingly hard to get matched?
“Yeah, it’s been really hard. I actually had a fight booked for May 13th right here in my backyard in El Reno Oklahoma. It was gonna be for a promotion called Martial Combat League and I was gonna fight for their 205 lbs title. People think I’m trying to say this as if I’m a big tough guy, but nobody wants to fight me. I’m not saying it to brag or any of that, I was so frustrated because we have literally asked like 30 top prospects in multiple different states surrounding Oklahoma. We’ve reached out to people in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, New York, throw in a state and you name it we asked their top prospects, we could never really get anyone to commit and the card kinda fell apart, but I’d already been in camp for it. Then my Coach Joe Stevenson called me and said that we got offered the California state title at Cruiserweight which is at 230 lbs, so I’m actually going up a weight class. It kinda worked out perfectly you know, it was a blessing in disguise because the California state title is a very prestigious title, it’s one of the biggest titles you can fight for here in the United States at amateur level. So I’m really blessed that my coach and I got the call. I’m prepared for war and do whatever I need to do to make sure that title comes home with me.”
I can hear your determination, definitely. What can the fans come to expect from you once you make that long awaited return to action after nearly a year out?
“They can expect violence and a 1st round finish.
I wish I was a bit closer, I’d definitely come to witness you out there.
“That’d be amazing, I’d love to have you there.”
It’s definitely on my bucket list to venture to the states, so I hope one day I can make the trip.
5 years on, you have a lot to reflect on. What have you taken from the past 5 years in the lion’s den?
“I’ve taken a lot from it, you know. This MMA game isn’t for everyone, and it has taught me ninot only to be a good man inside of the cage, but it has taught me to be a good man outside of the cage. My Martial Arts journey in general has taught me so much about life, if that makes sense. My biggest advice would be to find a Martial Art that you like, there’s a Martial Art out there for everyone and I’m a big believer in the fact it teaches you about different things in your life, it can really cater to real life situations and real life relationships. I’m.very thankful for this journey that I’ve been on thus far.”
I completely agree with your outlook on the sport, it really does have so many benefits.
Looking forward, you got a taste of fighting international opposition, would you entertain travelling abroad for future outings?
“Absolutely, I would absolutely love to do that. I feel like I have made a name for myself here on the amateur scene in America. I would love to go back to the IMMAF Pan American Championships again, but I just don’t know how much longer I’m going to be an amateur. But as an amateur or pro, I would love to travel abroad and fight overseas.”
I’m sure the UK would entertain you, there’s plenty of shows here that would be interested in your signature.
“I’m a phone call away, that would be amazing.”
There’s so many great tests for you over here.
It’s been an absolute pleasure speaking with you today Gabe, I wish you all the best for your continued training, your upcoming opportunity for the California state title and all the best for the future.
“Thank you sir, I really appreciate you taking the time, I know it’s really late there at the moment. This is a big blessing for you to help get my name out there, and give me a platform to talk to you on. I follow you very closely and I enjoy all of your articles that you write. I’m a big fan of yours and very grateful for the opportunity.”
The pleasure is all mine man, and I appreciate the kind words.
Last but not least, do you have a message for the readers and anybody you’d like to give a shout-out to?
“I would like to give a shout-out to all my friends, fans and family, thank you all for supporting me last, even the haters. If I’ve got any out there which i’m sure I do, thank you for giving me that extra fuel whenever I need it. I’m blessed with a great life, I love my kids and my family and on June 16th I’m ready to go to war, I’m.coming with everything I’ve got. I’d also like to give a big shout-out to all my teammates at Lovato Jiu-jitsu & MMA here in Oklahoma City. I’ve been grinding with these guys for the past 3 to 4 months almost every single morning and making it to noon classes when I can with the MMA guys. So a big shout-out to them for getting me prepared and sharpening the blade for this next one.”