Champions Gather at Chuck Norris’ Ranch

Champions Gather at Chuck Norris’ Ranch

If you’ve studied my work in the martial arts industry for any length of time, you’re probably aware that I’ve had the honor of interviewing many well-known individuals from Zig Ziglar and Tony Robbins to Jean Claude Van Damme and Jackie Chan.

But here’s an interesting fact you probably do not know.

Based upon the feedback, the extensive audio interview and magazine cover story I did with my good friend Joe Lewis – Echo of Greatness – may have been the most popular interview I’ve ever done.

No kidding.

One guy even wrote me saying that he had listened to the entire two-hour interview thirteen times!

Others literally studied the content, claiming it finally gave them the answers and inspiration they had been seeking for so long.

Anyhow, during the interview, Joe commented about his longtime friend Chuck Norris, whom he has had tremendous respect for over the years.

Furthermore, when Joe recently submitted the Afterword for my new book – The Martial Arts Business Bible – he wrote, “I like to associate a quote of mine that always reminds me of my friend and world karate champion, Chuck Norris – ‘What personal value is served by being a champion in the ring if you’re not also a champion in life?’”

Good stuff!

Joe Lewis and Chuck Norris Fighting

Joe Lewis and Chuck Norris Fighting

Well, it’s clear that the two champions are still quite close to this day and continue to share a mutual admiration for one another.
In fact, Joe was one of only a few people that Chuck invited to stay at his 1,000-acre, Texas ranch, for four days, during the recent 4th of July holiday.

The group photo that I’ve included at the top of this post was taken in front of the pond in Chuck’s backyard and features Joe Lewis, Bill Wallace, Chuck Norris and Alan Steen. (As a martial artist, I’m part of Steen’s lineage.)

Now this photo, which I’ve published with Joe’s express permission, is noteworthy for many reasons. However, I’d like to point out two “biggees” that should not go unnoticed:

1) The 1967 issue of Black Belt Magazine featured the first rating system in the sport of martial arts.  Three of the top five fighters on that initial rating system are seen in this photo — Norris, Steen, and Lewis.

2) In 1983, a poll to determine “the greatest fighter in the history of karate” was conducted by Black Belt Magazine and then later published in their second magazine, Karate Illustrated.  The results? Lewis was voted number one. Norris and Wallace tied for second place. So the top three fighters of all time, in early sport karate, are pictured in this photo — Lewis, Norris and Wallace. Also, Wallace became the first undefeated World Champion full contact kickboxer.

Bill Wallace, Chuck Norris, Gena Norris and Joe Lewis at Chuck's ranch.

So if you’re a martial arts history buff like me, I’m sure you enjoyed this post.

After all, it’s not often that you see four of our most recognizable martial arts “forefathers” together in one place…having a blast and looking good…nearly five decades after they each established themselves as “kings of the ring.”

Very, very cool!

By the way, start making plans to join me at the next Joe Lewis Research Conference in Tampa, Florida. The event will be taking place October 6- 9, 2011 and it’s one you definitely won’t want to miss.

For more information, you can visit this link: http://joelewisfightingsystems.com/calendar/default.html

I hope to see you there.

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