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Eight years and counting
by MAC

Eight years ago tomorrow, on the 11th August 2006, ten of us started up this site as a place for Rafa fans to get together and share information.

At that time, Rafa had just 17 titles of which two were Grand Slams and six were ATP Masters. Since then, he has achieved a career Grand Slam, winning at least one major every year (bringing his total to 14), won a Gold Medal at the Olympics and added a further twenty one ATP Masters titles to give him a record number.

To help celebrate this momentous occasion, I asked our current members to let me know their highlights.

The classic Wimbledon final of 2008 was one a lot of people chose.

In particular, there were a lot of mentions of how much being part of vamosbrigade enhanced that highlight.

For me the highlight will always be the Wimbledon final 2008. It was such a dramatic match, highlighted by a thunderstorm of dimensions hanging over Oslo. If it hadn't been for the company and comfort of VBers, I wouldn't have made it through. Attitudette

Being in the cheering thread for the 2008 Wimbledon final. It was a remarkable day, I will never forget. rudy3

My first highlight is how we endured the delicious ordeal of the 2008 Wimbledon final along with each other in the cheering thread. That was an EPIC experience! Maggy Bassett

Other Rafa highlights include :

AO 09, cloud 9 Roland Garros, and every one of Rafa's Monte Carlo wins. Too many to mention here. marron

2010/2013 US Open wins. 2009 AO semi and Final, considering AO is sort of unlucky for Rafa. Every year he wins RG the season is saved for me. alexa

Winning Wimbledon twice, winning USO, AO and all those FOs, that interview at the Aus Open when the reporter asked him about his Armani shoot. juanita

Rafa's responses to questions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwfY-knTwS0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acNUrlKp8t0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1u24V830 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3fuB7J60jjc feetofclay

2010 USO Final. 2009 AO SF vs Verdasco. 2008 FO final. 2013 Come Back Year. 2014 9th FO title tamsin

Rafa's 2013 run through the the clay court and U.S. hardcourt seasons - astonishing. oliva

DC in Cordoba. Rafa's comeback and titles after the long lay off - inc. USO 2013. Olympic gold and the fun he had at the tournament. daisy

Each RG title is so special for me = the highlight of each tennis year! but RAFA's first USO and W have been incredible moments too! these highlights are even better with all the pics, info and articles found on VB! flo

My all time favorite Rafa Moment would have to be at the USO 2010 when Rafa completed his career slam fashionista

The second one is how we all came together to make the Get Well video in 2009. Maggy Bassett

The overwhelming highlight for many people, however, has been the friendships formed and the opportunities to meet up with other members at tournaments around the world.

Since discovering Rafa & then VB, I've met so many wonderful people & had experiences & been to places that I would never have had otherwise. My life has definitely been enriched by being part of this group & the friendships forged from it. woody

Cheering for Rafa with Ana Canada and Silvamine in Madrid and Rome. Such a fun coming to Roland Garros and meeting MAC and Jen, arriving in Monte Carlo and seeing Natalie et al! VB rules! All over the world! hen

I joined shortly after Rafa's first Wimbledon and haven't looked back. My mom got on board as well and we have had boatloads of fun and memories from seeing Rafa play. Some of the best memories are the lifelong friends we've made watching Rafa! bluebird

Joined in 08 to lurk and find out more about the man behind the glorious smile. No idea then that it would bring me a bunch of wonderful friends and some fantastic experiences - shared fun,laughter,world travel,stress and best RAFA info! cathieb

VB is the place for all things Rafa, but the BEST thing is the VBers themselves. Since 2008 I have spent many wonderful hours with VB friends cheering, laughing, crying, drooling, chatting & chasing Rafa around practice courts. Wonderful times. alegriaH

When I joined in2010,never imagined I'd make so many fab new friends. Without VB I wouldn't have gone to MC or RG,or seen Rafa practice in Mallorca! tiggi

By far the best part of VB for me has been meeting VBers in person at tournaments and being able to share our love for Rafa together! I hope we're all here for many years to come! AnnieK

Being able to indulge my heart & soul in Rafa's career and dwell in this fabulous place called VamosBrigade is the highlight for me. Getting to meet some of our fellow VBers in Melbourne and Monaco, is the icing on the cake. Thank you Rafa. Lillian

April 2010, my 1st trip to Monte with the VB gang. An Icelandic volcano erupts whilst we are there watching Rafa win his 1st title in 10 months. All flights are grounded so we spend a joyous 2 days driving back across France together. Most fun ever! janken

(Read Jen's hilarious blog of that journey)

Rafa Nadal
Rafa Nadal
Rafa Nadal
Rafa Nadal

Members have also been highly complimentary about the one-stop shop that is vamosbrigade.com.

Discovering the phenomenon that is Rafa, the next thing you need is someone to share& enjoy with & Voila, you find VB. Everything you ever needed to know-intelligently delivered with humour,integrity &mutual admiration for the incomparable Rafa silvamine

OMG! Eight freaking years with you guys have been a thrill in my life. You cannot imagine how much I needed you at one point of my life. You were there for me even though you didn't know. Loving Rafa playing has brought so much joy in my life *María Laura*

I so appreciate and love the quantity of info, quality of info, the commitment of members to keep up the info, & the perseverance and patience of mods/founders to keep it all going for us. Bless you all, and Happy Birthday!!! bebe

I am very affectionate towards VB.
I have been part of it since the  beginning, and it's hard to find a particular moment to remember. It has become such a pleasant "daily routine" that I cannot imagine what I would do without it. Long life to VB.COM!

VB helped me learn more about Rafa. The generosity of fans sharing pics/vids/encounters at tourneys is amazing. jharper

(Check out all our Fan Experiences.)

Anyone not involved with VB misses out on the sheer delight of celebrating and sharing the inspiration & precious person who is Rafa. So many fabulous times, so many fabulous new friends. Thank you & many congratulations dear MAC & the other mods! loobyloo

I love VB! Happy Anniversary! I check in several x/day as Rafa & y'all are never far from my thoughts. Love the community here, the positivo & all the news, pics, info, translations, generosity & internat'l comraderie in triumph & otherwise. XOXO suzyq

Vamosbrigade has been the online "home" for many Rafael Nadal fans. It's a peaceful place, made by dedicated fans and that shows: it's simply the best place to get the latest info on Rafael Nadal. As a bonus: many of us made some good friends here. Moondancer

I've been following VB since it's inception. Best run website for Rafa fans by a mile! I remember when there was very little info about this talented, charismatic player from Mallorca, but look at you now...a Rafapedia of Rafalicious facts highpockets

VB is a great place for Rafa fans because everything you need to know about Rafa is one place. Through VB I have been able to meet and communicate with wonderful Rafa fans from all over the world. Thanks to all of you who have made this possible ana canada

Finally, a huge thank you from me to all the wonderful members who trawl the internet for every snippet of information, to the mods who keep the place clean and tidy and to all the fabulous friends I have made over the years.

Here's to our continuing journey.