Branko Cikatić (Croatia)

Branko CikaticMartial Arts Legend

Branko "The Croatian Tiger" Cikatić (born October 3, 1954) is a Croatian former heavyweight kickboxer, the first Croatian born fighter to achieve international success. He was the first K-1 World Grand Prix tournament champion held on April 30, 1993 in Japan.

Biography and career

Cikatić began his martial arts training at the age of 12 when he took up Taekwondo, and later Shotokan Karate at 16. He eventually earned a black belt in both of these disciplines, as well as a blue belt in Judo. When he was 18 years old, he took up boxing before switching to kickboxing.[1]
He surprised the martial arts world by storming the 1993 K-1 Grand Prix tournament, knocking out all three of his opponents in one evening, including Ernesto Hoost in the final match. To date, Cikatić is the oldest winner of the K-1 Grand Prix at 38 years and 208 days.

He extended his athletic resume to include mixed martial arts in 1998, fighting in the Pride Fighting Championships. His PRIDE debut was fought against Ralph White under K-1 rules format. Cikatić lost via disqualification after kicking the head of the downed White. Cikatić returned at Pride 2, fighting under MMA rules and facing Mark Kerr. He was again disqualified after holding the ring ropes when Kerr attempted a takedown, refusing to let go when directed by the referee, running away through the ring ropes, and delivering several illegal elbows to the back of Kerr's head. His next fight at Pride 7 ended in a submission loss to Maurice Smith by forearm choke.
Towards the end of his sports career, Cikatić tried his hand at acting, playing a villain in a 1997 B-movie Skyscraper, starring Anna Nicole Smith.


Professional Career:

  • 1998 World Champion WMTA (Zagreb)
  • 1995 K-1 Grand Prix 3rd Place (Tokyo)
  • 1993 K-1 World Grand Prix Champion (Tokyo)
  • 1991 World champion in Thai boxing 86 kg (Berlin)
  • 1990 World Champion IKBF in kick-boxing 86 kg
  • 1989 WKA in kick-boxing 86 kg
  • 1987 World champion in Thai boxing 82.5 kg (Amsterdam)
  • 1986 European champion in Thai boxing (Paris)
  • 1985 European champion in Thai boxing (Amsterdam)

Amateur Career:

  • 1983 European Championships in Caen (Full-Contact)
  • 1982 European Championships in Berlin (Full-Contact)
  • 1981 W.A.K.O. European Championships in Dublin -79 kg (Full-Contact)
  • 1981 W.K.K.A. World Championships in Miami 79 kg (Full-Contact)
  • 1980 W.A.K.O. European Championships in London -79 kg (Full-Contact)
  • 1979 W.A.K.O. European Championships in Milan -79 kg (Full-Contact)

Damir Škaro (Croatia)

Damir Skaro

Martial Arts Legend

Damir Škaro started his boxing carrier in 1967, during his high-school days. From the beginning he showed talent, and soon after his first accomplishments began. At the Balkan championship, held in Athens, wearing sport’s uniform of the club Trešnjevka, he won a gold medal at the junior competition, in the junior light middleweight category.

As a result of his successes, from the start, Damir soon begin to compete for the national boxing team, and in consideration of his progress, he was transferred to senior competition. He left his previous boxing club and transfered to the “Borovo” boxing club in Vukovar. For that club he won the National Senior Championship title in the middleweight category in 1980. The same year he qualified for his first Olympic Games in Moscow. Unfortunately, the winner of the Olympic Games, the winner of a gold medal, Viktor Savčenko – host of Olympics, eliminated him from further competition.

After the Olympics in Moscow, Damir accomplished the following triumphs: Balkan championship in 1983 and 1984. Following that he went to his second Olympic Games, this time to Los Angeles, where at quarterfinals, very closed to a medal, he was defeated by gold medal winner Virgil Hill, again by the host of the Olympics.
He achieved an extraordinary success at the World Championship in Reno (USA) 1986, where he won a bronze medal. After that he won a gold medal at the Mediterranean Games 1987 in Syria and the flattering title “Mediterranean Champ”.

Damir Skaro 1986At the World championship in 1988, held in Belgrade, Damir brought home the silver medal. That 1988 was crucial in his carrier, in that year he degraded his “old rival” Virgil Hill, the one that won a gold medal at the Olympics in Los Angeles. Then, at the pre-Olympic tournament in Seoul, South Korea, he won a bronze medal, which offered a very good insight into the future development of events. Damir won bronze a medal at the Olympic Games in Seoul, October 1988, in very tough match, with broken ribs and bleeding by the eyebrow. His participation at the Olympics was ended by this match due of a string of health problems when doctors prohibited him from participating at the finals.

After Seoul, Damir, at the peak of his career, left boxing where he left a large footprint. In about 450 matches he had 12 defeats. Among celebrated Mate Parlov, and Ante Josipović, he is the only, and the last, Croatian with an Olympic medal in boxing. He is the winner of the prestigious award “Franjo Bučar” in 2007, which in only given for exceptional achievements in sports in Croatia.

With winning the Olympic medal, Damir achieved his boxing dream and returned to his first love – SOCCER – playing at numerous tournaments, called small soccer, which is played indoors on a smaller court size. In 1993 his friends from Vukovar and Borovo invited him to join them to play regular soccer for the Veteran club VUKOVAR ’91, which was competing inside of ZNS league.

With the return of refugees in 1997 to Vukovar after the Civil war, Damir transferred to another team, RIZ ODAŠILJAČI, and the team won the title of National Veteran Championship. 2002 deceased Stjepan Radić invited Damir to play for the veteran team HRVATSKI DRAGOVOLJAC, and Damir became the captain of the team and later on the president of the club. Damir’s leadership qualities and his winning élan brought the team from the bottom to the top and won them the title of National Veteran Champion four times in HNS and ZNS league.

Herbert Forster (Switzerland)

Herbert ForsterGold Life Achievement Award

Herbert E. Forster je počeo prije 40-ak godina svoju borilačku karijeru u St. Gallenu s Kyokushinkai karate a zatim se preselio u Njemačku gdje se počeo baviti sa Ju jitsu i aikido

Godine 1995. Herbert E. Forster prvi put otvorio vlastitu dvoranu, Budo Martial Arts Academy u Austriji a potom je 2000.godine otvorena Budo Martial Arts Academy u Švicarskoj u prekrasnom Neckeru gdje se nalazi njegov Seibukan Shorin Ryu Karate Kobudo. Herbert E. Forster je studirao i još uvijek trenira i druge stilove poput Kyokushinkai karate Bushido karate, Kyusho Kai-jitsu i kickboxing.  Član je švicarskog karate saveza i glavni sudac u udruzi ISSKA (Međunarodna Shorin Seibukan Karate Association). Nositelj je  1 Dan Kobudo, 1 Dan Kyusho-jitsu i 4 Dan u karateu.

U uskoj suradnji sa Soke Heinz W. Köhnen 9 Dan (Soke Shodai Tamashiiryu) usavršeni je stil Toitsu Seishin Kai (um i tijelo u cjelinu) koje se i dalje razvija a sustav Toitsu Seishin Kai je službeno priznata od strane Kokusai okinawan unije Borilačkih vještina. Herbert E. Forster je nagrađen s titulom Shihana.

Na zahtjev Heinz W. Köhnen Soke, koji je osnovao IOBF Njemačka (Interantional Okinawa Budo Federacija) točno prije 20 godina, Herbert E. Forster je preuzeo predsjedanje.

Toitsu Seishin Kai Karate je prepoznat na međunarodnoj razini u različitim zemljama a veliki uspjeh u drugima su zabilježeni uglavnom u Italiji, Hrvatskoj, Turskoj i Njemačkoj.

Dragan Primorac (Croatia)

Dragan Primorac Dedication to the Martial Arts

(born June 7, 1965) is a university professor, pediatrician, geneticist and forensic science expert who became a politician as a member of Croatian Government, serving as the Minister of Science, Education and Sports between 2003 and 2009.

Early life and career

Primorac was born in Banja Luka (Bosnia and Herzegovina) but his family soon moved to Split where he graduated from elementary and high schoo  While he was living in Split he was trained in soccer clubs “Split”, “Hajduk” and “Solin”, as well as track and field in the athletic club “Split 80” (today Hajduk) On November 17. 1987 he founded the Tae kwon do club “Kocunar” and since then he is president of the club  Shortly thereafter, Robert Prusac, vicepresident and Mile Mamic, second vicepresident joined the club. Since 1987 more than 6000 participants have been trained in the Club, and many of them won a number of medals in national and international competitions.

Career in science and education

Primorac is professor of pediatric medicine at University of Split and University of Osijek, Croatia; professor of forensic sciences at University of Split, Croatia; adjunct assistant professor of forensic sciences at The Pennsylvania State University, USA and adjunct associate professor of forensic sciences at the University of New Haven, USA. Currently, Primorac is a fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Science, a member of the American Society of Human Genetics, Croatian Society of Human Genetics, and the Croatian Society for Osteogenesis Imperfecta.


Primorac entered the first government of Ivo Sanader in December 2003. Primorac's commitment to build a society based on knowledge and to acknowledge the key role of education and science has been reflected in a growing investment into the education and science system, with the budget increase between 2004 and 2009 totaling 56%.
Within the area of science project for the return of Croatian scientists from abroad was started and since 2004 over 120 scientists have returned to Croatia. The programme Unity through Knowledge yielded approximately 40 competitive research projects with returnee and Diaspora (Croatian professionals working abroad) participation.
On June 16, 2009, weekly magazine Nacional announced that “Primorac will soon become the first minister in the history of Croatia to resign at the peak of his political career
The award for numerous efforts made in the Croatian educational system is the recent survey of the famous Newsweek which rated Croatia 22nd in education ahead of 12 countries from the G20 group.

Humanitarian work

Primorac has participated in numerous humanitarian activities all around the world. Currently he is president of Charity Foundation Cro Unum  and he is member of Advisory Board of American International Relief Organization, Bridge Foundation

Ismir Jusko (Bosnia&Herzegovina)

Ismir JuskoOustanding Contributions in the Martial Arts

The President of the Budo Federation of BiH and the President of the Commission for the awarding the Black Belts in Karate Associattion of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

School/Federation name: Mix Martial Arts Club  BUSHIDO-Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

School/Federation website:,,
Highest rank: 4. DAN-Jiu Jitsu, 4.DAN Karate

Award received:

The best Sportsperson of Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2010 and a special prize for the Special Role and Contribution  in the Martial Arts Development and Education in State Anti-terrorist Unit by Ministry of Security


From 1994 to 2012 won many sports results both at European and at global level.  He is the coach of Karate and Jiu Jitsu athletes who continuously have been winning European and World medals. He is head couch of the best athletes in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In Bushido Martial Arts club wich is one of the largest Martial Art clubs in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the region and has about 300 members in the range of  5-55 years of age. He is the chief Martial Arts Instructor for the State Anti-terrorist Unit and also holding trainings to Bodyguard Teams, Prison Police, and Private Security Agencies.

In the period from 1991 to 1997 he was a member of a Special Police Unit of Bosnia and Herzegovina and from  1997 to 2008 and also  worked for the USA State Department as Chief Antiterrorist Team to the U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo. Beside that, he in the organization of safety of many U.S. senators, congressmen,  
Besides working at the club and contribution to the work of these alliances, he is currently employed at the Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Agency for Police Support on the position of Chief of cabinet.