Published on July 12, 2013
Richard Arsenault has been spending eight hours a day training in the lead up to his chance this September to vie to become Canada’s first Ultimate Fighter. The tryout, coincidentally, is on his first wedding anniversary, which is Sept. 22.
Nancy MacPhee/Journal Pioneer
Published on August 21, 2013
Local mixed martial arts fighter Richard Arsenault spars with Logan O'Brien at Green's Shore, where he can be found nearly every afternoon. Arsenault has been training harder than usual lately, as he's set to take on Ricky Goodall in a rematch of a title fight a year ago, just prior to the Ultimate Fighter tryouts.
Ryan Cooke/Journal Pioneer
Local MMA fighter trying out for UFC Sunday.
TORONTO – Richard Arsenault will face a personal moment of truth on Sunday.
The 35-year-old native of Wellington will join a great many other mixed martial artists on Sunday in Toronto as they audition for next season of The Ultimate Fighter television show.
Arsenault said on Friday that he’s at peace with himself and his chances.
“I feel really good … I’ve trained this hard and I’m very confident. We’ll see, I’m not really worried about it,” he said.
Sunday will be the culmination of years of grueling training and months of preparations for Arsenault.
Up until this this spring he and his new bride Courtney were living and working in Alberta when they heard The Ultimate Fighter was coming to Canada to gather hopefuls for this year’s Canada vs. Australia themed season.
They struggled with the decision but ultimately chose to drop everything, and move home to P.E.I. so Arsenault could train full-time in preparation.
On Sunday, he will be put through his paces with all the other hopefuls. If he’s chosen to move on, he’ll travel to Montréal with 32 others for a chance to fight for a place in The Ultimate Fighter house.
But as much as he’s looking forward to the physical aspects of the competition, Arsenault admitted to some nervousness regarding the reality TV aspects of the audition.
“I find that a lot of guys on their shows they have big egos or a lot of attitude. I don’t know really if I can do that or not,” he chuckled.
But come what may on Sunday Arsenault is buoyed by the fact that if he doesn’t make it onto the show, he’ll have another chance in a couple of months to make it into the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) itself.
The league will be coming to Halifax for the first time in early 2014 and Arsenault likes his chances to fight his way into the league.
“They’ll be looking for a lot of Maritimers … so it’s kind of like a second opportunity,” he said.
But win or lose on Sunday he wanted to give thanks to his community for their support.
“I dropped everything to come back from out west and train – the support I got from so many people on the Island was unreal. I feel great, I’m in top shape and I can’t wait to get going.”