I landed in Indianapolis at 6:00 a.m. the day of the fight. I was sent to document my experience at UFC 119, and to check out first hand why the UFC is the fastest growing sport on earth—plus, I needed to make sure our Miss TransWorld SURF model, Brittany Ward did her job and represented us well. I slept for most of the day, then got up and started walking around Indianapolis at about 3:00, to say this town was buzzing about the UFC would be a gross understatement. Every human within a ten-mile radius of Conseco Arena was geared u in Tap-Out, UFC, Affliction, and any other fight-style garb you could name. I was wearing skinny jeans, and not fitting in.
I sat at bars, struck up conversations, tried in vein to blend in with the local UFC fans, and guess what, they were all super nice and even bought me drinks at various watering holes.
When I got to the fight, I met up with Brittany, who was even hotter in person than she was in pictures. The other two "official" ring girls were probably pretty bummed cause Brittany outshined them by a mile, and she was the "guest" ring girl. "I'm ready!" laughed Brittany sitting ringside. "I'm a little bit nervous but really all I'm doing is, walking around this ring holding a sign, the guys inside the ring are doing the real work."
Brittany, who was handpicked by Dana White looked like ring girl professional—strutting her stuff and getting mad-cheers from the crowd. I felt like a proud father, or brother. Yeah, lets go with proud older brother.
Brittany, who entered the Miss TransWorld SURF Model Search "for fun" is now a national celebrity! Blogs are going nuts over her, and we're pretty sure this is not the last time we'll see her in that hot little UFC bikini—Dana, make it happen, make her a "real" ring girl!
Anyway, I had a crazy all access pass (thank Heidi from the UFC) so I sat about 15 feet from the ring and could hear every punch, knee, and kick. The fights were pretty good, there was some blood and a knockout knee to the face (from Mir to Cro-cop) and the rabid fans of Indy actually behaved themselves for the whole evening. I was surprised that there was not one fight in the stands—the crowd was awesome and respectful.
I did manage to take a few pictures of my journey, which lasted a grand total of 24 hours. My first UFC fight experience was an epic mini-adventure and I highly recommend checking one out in a town near you. As for me, I won't be getting in any rings any time soon, but you can bet that I'll be headed to another fight in the near future.—Chris Coté