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Luana Carolina under strict COVID-19 testing ahead of UFC fight with Ariane Lipski

Luana Carolina (right) made her UFC debut in May 2019, defeating Priscila Cachoeira via decision.
Photo via Lucas Martins

UFC athletes and staff are tested for the COVID-19 virus upon arrival for fight week. But Luana Carolina’s team felt the need to get more testing before flying to Las Vegas.

Carolina is booked to face fellow Brazilian flyweight Ariane Lipski at UFC’s upcoming event on June 13, and her coach Lucas Martins, a UFC veteran who runs Capital da Luta gym in Sao Paulo, partnered with a testing provider to have everyone involved in Carolina’s camp monitored.

“Capital da Luta provided COVID-19 tests not only for her and myself since Luana signed the bout agreement,” Martins told MMA Fighting, “but also two professional athletes that live in a lodging I have, and we’re doing weekly tests to guarantee the safety of Luana and their family, because their parents are a bit older.”

Carolina’s boyfriend was assigned with the task of driving her to and from the gym every day, and he’s also being tested once a week to make sure he’s not infected.

Overall, Capital da Luta is investing $400 a week in tests. So far, all results have come back negative. Another round of tests was done on Tuesday morning, which marks the third test for Martins and Carolina and the second one for everyone else.

“We’re doing six tests a week so Luana has the confidence to train well and have the best camp possible in the midst of this pandemic,” Martins said.

The UFC did a trio of events earlier this month in Jacksonville, Fla., and Ronaldo Souza’s camp was the only group of people that tested positive so far. “Jacare” had his middleweight bout with Uriah Hall scrapped after his test results came back following the weigh-ins, and Martins wants to make sure Carolina is healthy when she arrives in Las Vegas.

“Everything that can be done to guarantee the athlete’s safety is valid,” Martins said. “But there were a lot of (UFC) events, and only ‘Jacare’ was confirmed (positive). In the midst of all this, I think everyone is being very cautious. We’re doing this because Sao Paulo is one of the peaks (of cases) in Brazil, so we had to do this for Luana.”

As of Wednesday morning, the state of Sao Paulo recorded 6,423 of the 24,593 deaths caused by the disease in the country.

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