Honorio “The Rock” Banario, 28, and Eduard “Landslide” Folayang, 34, are two of the veteran fighters of Team Lakay. The mentorship and brotherhood between the two Filipino mixed martial artists are something that other athletes should emulate.
“I am extremely honored to have Eduard as a mentor and as a brother,” Banario said in an interview with ONE Championship. “A huge part of my success, I owe to him.”
Banario reigned as the ONE Featherweight World Champion from February 2, 2013 to May 31, 2013. Folayang was the ONE Lightweight World Champion from November 11, 2016 to November 10, 2017.
For Banario, getting to this point in his career was certainly no easy task. Now that he finds himself resurgent in ONE Championship’s stacked lightweight division, he wants to give credit where credit is due.
A huge factor in Banario’s re-emergence as an elite competitor is his time spent with his Team Lakay mentor, a man whom he considers as close as it gets to family. He and Folayang have been each other’s main sparring partner for the greater part of their careers, and together, they have been able to help each other become among the promotion’s top talents.
For Banario, having Folayang in his corner helping him throughout his career has been a blessing. When Banario hit rock bottom in his career as a professional martial artist, he found solace in Folayang’s encouraging words, telling him to constantly push through no matter the adversity.
On September 8, 2018, Banario will compete in ONE Championship for the 14th time. In the co-main event of “ONE: Beyond the Horizon” at the Baoshan Sports Center in Shanghai, China, he will compete against Singaporean contender Amir Khan, 23, in the lightweight division.
Watch one of the previous ONE Championship bouts of Banario here: