Widely recognized as one of the top MMA coaches in Asia, Team Lakay head coach Marquez “Mark” Sangiao is highly regarded by the mixed martial arts community in the Middle East. When he celebrated his birthday on March 25, 2018, he received numerous greetings from people from around the world including Hari Bhagirath, the Chief Creative Officer of the Bahrain-based MMA promotion Brave Combat Federation.
“We at Brave Combat Federation wishes coach Mark Sangiao a happy birthday,” Bhagirath said. “The Kingdom of Bahrain is focused on developing the sport of mixed martial arts into a path that drives holistic development of the youth alongside inculcating a healthy lifestyle. His life and works are inspiring and honorable as it touches the life of youth and is an inspiring example of social commitment that extends beyond the sport of mixed martial arts.”
Sangiao was an athlete himself prior to founding the famed Team Lakay from Baguio City, Philippines. He was one of the original champions of the Universal Reality Combat Championship, an MMA promotion based in the Philippines.
Team Lakay was instrumental in training top athletes from the Philippines who compete in top MMA promotions around the world including Brave CF. As the Team Lakay head coach, he is the mentor of the reigning Brave CF Bantamweight Champion Stephen Loman.
In 2004, Sangiao taught at the Criminology department of the University of Cordilleras while completing his Master’s degree. In the university, he is looked upon as a father figure who had a significant impact upon many students who later embarked an MMA career at Team Lakay.
Under the leadership of Sangiao, Team Lakay has produced three titles in ONE Championship and currently the Bantamweight Championship in Brave CF. Under Brave CF, Filipino athletes had represented the Philippines in several countries including India, Jordan, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Brazil in multiple occasions.
As a mentor, Sangiao instills the values of honor, humility, perseverance and kindness in his students. Aside from Loman, Brave CF fighters Jeremy Pacatiw and Crisanto Pitpitunge are also among the members of Team Lakay who are training under the tutelage of Sangiao.